Sextant Trophy 2017

Nine skippers booked in for the Sextant Trophy at Lee Valley’s Clayton Hill venue but one was not well so could not attend.
The lake was its usual self with light, variable winds that were somewhat of an enigma.
But then everybody knew that!
To add to the mixture there was some floating weed so the pace was set to enable boats to be checked after every race.
In Race 1 Cliff Daniels and his light wind, low drag, non weed catching Prismatic got away to a good start.
After rounding the windward mark he took his eye of the ball while he checked the position of the next mark and the boat slowed to a stop while others sailed past him.
Then it was very reluctant to get going gain which seemed odd until he brought it ashore and found a large clump of weed attached to the rudder which is the only place that can catch it and usually doesn’t.  So much for being non weed catching!
Race 3 saw something similar for John Davies though he did hang on to finish 3rd.
Race 5 brought disaster for Martin Jarvis when his transmitted came off the strap and plunged into the water.  He was unable to dry it out to get it going again which was a pity as his Panther showed promise in its first outing in a competitive fleet.
By this time it became clear that Bernie’s Ravenna didn’t like going around the windward mark and there were many times, sometimes one after the other, when it fell just below the mark when on a starboard beat to it.
Race 8 saw Cliff get into his stride with a runaway win in a light spell.
Meanwhile Terry Burton and Mike Ewart had been beavering away to some useful results such that at this point Terry has 13 points, John 15, Mike 16 and Cliff 17.
The rest were some way behind although Geoff Earle bagged a win in Race 7.
Geoff was feeling the strain so dropped out of racing after Race 8 but stayed to lend moral support while resting.
We stopped for lunch at about 12:30 then continued on in much the same way with the top spots being closely contested by Terry, Cliff, John and Mike.
However Norman Clarke’s Revulsion called Levity, got among them from time to time and took a win in Race 14.
The event was sailed in good humour despite the light winds and weed and all incidents, of which there were only a few, were resolved on the water.
We got through 18 races due to some extent to Paul Clayden on the start machine being quick on the draw once all boats appeared to be able to get to the start line.
At the end Cliff and Terry were both on 39 points.
This is where the scorer failed in his proper duty! I had scored up to Race 17 so had only one to add at the end but then forgot to sort the results into order or check how the winner, which I announced as Terry, had won the tie.
If I had then I would have seen that actually Cliff won by having 7 wins to Terry’s 4.
Fortunately Terry decided to leave the trophy at Lee Valley so I will pass it to Cliff soon.
John had to leave before the last race and had he sailed things might have been a bit different as he was on a roll.
As it was he finished 3rd, 4 points behind the other two.
As Race Officer I was ably assisted by Paul Clayden, Simon Liddell and George Beacroft

Results:

Pos. Skipper Sail # Club/City Hull Score
1 Cliff Daniels 03 Lee Valley Prismatic 39.0
2 Terry Burton 76 Broads Ravenna  39.0
3 John Davies 25 Lee Valley Ravenna  43.0
4 Mike Ewart 12 Abington Park Ravenna  49.0
5 Bernie Guest 73 Broads Ravenna  56.0
6 Norman Clarke 71 Lee Valley Levity 62.0
7 Geoff Earle 147 Harwich & Dovercourt Rococo 106.0
8 Martin Jarvis 09 Lee Valley Panther 117.0
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