Harken RYA northern sailability regatta

Harken northern sailability regatta 2015

Harken Northern RYA Sailability Regatta report 2015


Testing wind shifts and fierce competition made this regatta one to remember!


"Well wasn't that fun" was the comment heard most frequently following the annual Northern Sailability Regatta sponsored by Harken which took place at Bolton Sailing Club this Thursday the 8th October. It is one of those rare annual events that everyone looks forward to and despite this year's motorway chaos which delayed the arrival of the teams from John Jamieson and John Smeaton Schools in Leeds it was again a truly enjoyable fun event.

Bolton Sailing Club sits high in the heart of the West Pennines and conditions are always a challenge but as the Commodore said on the day "even by Bolton standards these changing wind conditions would challenge the most experienced sailors "

Because of the traffic problems the first two races were limited to the four local Lancashire teams from Pendle Community High, Astley Park, Brambles, and Tom Finney Schools. All the teams faced continually changing wing conditions and indeed such were the wind conditions that the course laid for the first race was simply reversed for the second. The team of Brambles 1 (Wesley & Josh) conquered the conditions winning both races but were strongly challenged by the team of Pendle 1 (Liam & Reece) who finished a strong second. The performance of the team from Astley Park (Niamh & Dianna) deserves a special mention as they best commanded the light winds during the first race rounding the first mark well in the lead but losing the lead at the run into the finish. Throughout both races the team from Tom Finney School (Zak & Daniel) continually challenged the leaders and it was only during the run into the final marks of both races that the variable wind conditions got the better of them.

Just before lunch the arrival of the Yorkshire teams heralded a lift in the weather as they not only brought the sunshine but more consistent and predictable winds for races three and four. Team 1 from John Jamieson (Warren & Macauley ) sailed exceptionally well in both races winning race four and coming a very close second in race three to the John Smeaton boat sailed to a magnificent first place by Jess & Cloe. In both races the Brambles 2 crewed by Liam & Ryan fought strongly and picked up a well-deserved second place in race four. We should also highlight the strong competitive and at times flamboyant sailing of both the John Jamieson team 2 (Georgia & Brandon) and the Pendle 2 team of Arron & Shaun who brought a very competitive edge to both races.

The teams participating in the "Plate Final," which was sailed in excellent conditions, all exhibited the same competitive attitude which made for some very close quarter encounters at all the marks but the race was won in tremendous style by the team from Tom Finney School (Zak & Daniel) followed very closely to the finish by the Pendle 2 boat of Arron & Shaun and the equally competitive team from Astley Park of Niamh & Dianna. Special note should be made of the spirit and smiling demeanour of the team from John Jamieson 2 (Georgia & Brandon) who having been in the lead for much of the race decided at the last mark to run close to the shore as they headed for the finish unfortunately a sudden unexpected heavy gust of wind pushed them into low water and an unexpected grounding.

The teams taking part in the "Trophy Final" had the most competitive race of the day with the leader being challenged at each mark. The final sprint to the finish was contested by several boats but at the line the team crossing the line in first place was that of Brambles 1 (Wesley & Josh). All the teams in the race deserve a great thanks for making this a truly great final race of the day so thank you to Pendle 1 (Liam & Reece), to the smiling John Smeeton team of Jess and Cloe, to the competitive team of Brambles 2 (Liam & Ryan) and the team it was a real joy to watch the John Jamieson Team 1 of Warren and Macauley.

The winners of Northern Sailability Regatta were Brambles 1 (Wesley & Josh) who also won the combined Heats 1 & 2. Runners up were the Pendle 1 team of Liam and Reece followed closely by the team from John Smeaton (Jess & Cloe). Winners of the combined heats 3 and 4 were the team of John Jamieson 1 (Warren & Macauley).

Harken sponsored the event and provide all the competitors with a bag full of goodies and some excellent prizes for the first three teams

Special thanks to all the schools, their staff, supporters, Harken and the volunteers but especially to the wonderful Ann and Martin who catered and provided the most spectacular lunch that was enjoyed by everyone who attended the Northern Sailability Regatta now known to many people as "The Northern Smileability Regatta"

Northern sailability regatta winners


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