UK Nat IOM Champs 2004

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Gosport, May 2004

I somehow found myself the Race Officer for this event (the sins of my current, if not my past, life catching up with me) and so this report is from a somewhat different perspective.  We introduced some modest event measuring, weighing the keel, and we found that a surprising number of them were over 2.5 kg.  Not by very much, it has to be said, but enough to show that, after some boat "maintenance", not all sailors had their boats re-measured.  Saturday, Sunday, and Monday were generally mild days, sometimes sunny, and wet only on Monday morning.  The wind, however, proved awkward, backing and veering for a couple of hours before settling down to give good racing in the afternoons.  The new Gosport club-house, seen in the background, was officially opened by the Gosport Mayor on the first day.  It is a lovely facility, and we don't talk about the way it bends the wind on either side...

Sixty-eight entrants allowed us to run four heats, and we sailed eleven races.  Not very productive.  Protests gave up to two hours of lost sailing time each day.  The top 10 positions after two discards were:

Skipper  Points  Design
1   Graham Bantock 17 Italiko
2   Martin Roberts 27 Gadget
3   Trevor Binks 29 Isis
4   Peter Stollery 39 Tonic (modified)
5   Philip Playle 44 Italiko
6   Michael Scharmer 53 Scharming Mk X
7 Chris Harris 60 Triple Crown
8 Ken Binks 62 Isis
9 Mark Holt 76 Italiko
10 Mark Dennis 84 Italiko

Racing was generally close, and the first windward and leeward marks could see up to 8 boats overlapped.  Here are six boats rounding the windward mark in "D" heat on day 1, and another six doing the same a little later in "A" fleet.

We had most welcome entrants from GER, and Michael Scharmer showed us his latest thinking with his own-design "Scharming Mk X".  It is an ultra-narrow design and only manages to stay within the hull depth restriction by having a flat bottom and very hard bilges.  Sail plan is as far forward as possible, giving an "L" keel.  Michael told me that his next design would not be so extreme.  All the spars are of wood (yes, mast included), the fittings are home-made, and the sails are home-made from the cellophane wrap you can buy from florists at pennies per sheet.  Absolutely marvellous!


2011 Lester Gilbert