BEWL MAY 29th-31st - Graham Thompson
The format of the event was somewhat changed this year - no longer was it an advertised ‘open event’ but rather a Bewl Water club event open to certain groups by invitation. Consequently we needed to continue making an impression - whether by numbers, or by results.
With GCSEs imminent most of the younger Aquarius members were absent. Mark Milstead (a new member from our Open Day with GCSE next year) came for the day on Saturday with his parents Bill and Carol. Barry Jones with his Hawk, Richard Cannon, Laurie Bridges and the Hattons with their Signets came for the three days.
The weather was excellent for cruising on Saturday with a NE 3-4, except for one heavy shower while we were walking from the camp site to the club.
We had a few incidents; Barry took Mark out and a shroud broke as they were coming back.
Laurie took Bill and Richard took Carol out for for their first sail, apart from the Open Day initiation. Then Richard couldn’t see ST856; disaster for Laurie they had capsized and inverted with a sudden wind shift. Carol’s first concern was for Bill’s contact lenses for him driving her home! Then just for good measure Bill fell into the water again as he was getting out at the jetty. All this didn’t deter Mark coming out again with Richard.
On Sunday, first timer at Bewl, Rodger Wheeler, brought the club Graduate, Graham Thompson brought his Bosun and we were joined by a couple of ex-BAe (non Aquarius) SigneT owners with two excellent lightweight daughters as crew. But there still resulted in a bit of a scramble for crew and the club Graduate never touched the water.
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  Although it was overcast the sailing was excellent in the NE 3-4 with two races in the slow handicap fleet of 13 boats. SigneTs did rather well taking 3 of the first 4 places; Richard was 1st and Keith 3rd.
Monday was very different. It was overcast again but much colder and with a very variable, full of holes, patchy NE 0-2 wind.
The main race was by invitation for Bewl ‘Champions’ with the rest having their own start; 25 starters ranged from Optimists to a 49er, the best 2 of 3 races counted.
There was an extremely close finish in the first race with Richard less than a second behind ST186. The conditions didn’t suit the faster boats and at one time Richard even overtook a Laser 3000 with its Geneker up.
  Aquarius and friends again did very well with Richard 1st, after a tie break with an Optimist, and other Sig
nets came 3rd and 5th. Barry Jones and I wallowed forlornly around in the Bosun, admiring the Signets, but we did not come last;
Toppers are such useful boats for salvaging one’s self esteem by coming last. Perhaps they will have second thoughts about inviting us back next year as we grabbed a major share of the bounty.
Three communal meals were organized, with Saturdays
onslaught on the George and Dragon inducing a mag
nificent decline in the establishment’s standards in only 24 hours. At least the Grasshopper visited on the way
on Monday did not have to suffer a double whammy,
service should have recovered by next year.
  Bewl results