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Hampton Regatta Results

HAMPTON SC REGATTA 17-18 June - Richard Cannon
The Friday weather forecast indicated that it would be a very hot weekend but little wind as we were in the middle of a high. But the early Saturday Radio 4 report actually mentioned good sailing several times, especially by the coast. True to forecast there was a F 2-4 SE to SW wind for both Saturday and Sunday.
On the AQSC reach a South wind gives a lousy sail because it has come over the houses or the high reservoir. But at Hampton a South wind comes over an open green and it gave a very good sail over the handicap fleet course.
The plan was to leave AQSC at 10am Saturday for the the 11am start but two people only arrived at 10am; this caused a lot of stress. Eventually 2 Signets and 3 Graduates were towed up to Hampton after the first of several mishaps; the belt on the safety boat Dynastart came off and had come loose so it had to be hand started. Fortunately the Handicap fleet didnít start until 11:30am and we arrived in time.
At Hampton SC it is mainly Class racing (GP14, Enterprise, Merlin and Laser) so we were a major part of the handicap fleet; they also had a couple of Graduates.
The courses were very simple, just 2 port marks between the Islands, and we had very good sailing except for the bottom mark that was just in the lee of an island and the wind was very light and fickle. The races were long at about 85minutes.
The Club Graduate objected to the fresh wind and one of the stays broke causing the mast to fall down, or perhaps it was the presence of Rodger Wheeler in the boat (remember his Enterprise mast fell down). Charles Dennis arrived half way through the race. Fortunately we had a spare boat Rodger and Bryan Clements could use for the afternoon race.
Towards the end of the second race Richard Cannon was hit by a GP14 he hadnít seen, although Richard was on Port the GP had finished racing. As it was a glancing blow Richard didnít expect there to be much damage, but a substantial bit of the gunwale had been gouged out.
Between and after racing we were refreshed by an excellent selection of food.

While taking the sails down at the end of racing Richard was surprised that the jib halyard fell down, then Mark saw something fall in the water; the top jib pulley had disintegrated.
Three boats elected to sail back to the club, the other three were strung together to be towed back. As the tow started the string of boats drifted off on their own; the painter on the Club Graduate had broken and it broke again when it was being pulled up the slipway.
On Sunday we were surprised to find the mast back on the Club Graduate; Bryan had found a spare shroud and painter, and fitted them. Sunday was very much a repeat of Saturday but with more boats, we towed 7 boats and Charles Dennis sailed to Hampton SC.
It was extremely crowded on the river with a total entry of 55 boats plus the cruisers, canoeists, rowers and children swimming across the river. At times there just didnít seem to be anywhere to go, especially when the fleet collected at one mark with a lull in the wind. We probably had our largest fleet there for a long time and their Handicap fleet is normally much smaller. Very different from Bewl where there was only the same number of boats on their vast water from their huge fleet.
When we came to leave Robert found his mast had fallen down due to a pin coming out. Four boats were towed and four sailed back to AQSC. As we passed the Hampton Club house there was a resounding three cheers for AQSC; we really are made very welcome.
It was an extremely enjoyable, but exhausting, weekend and a great experience for our youth sailors who coped with the conditions very well. We didnít leave AQSC until well gone 8pm.
Our Regatta and Jazz night is on the 1st and 2nd of July; please attend to make it as successful as the Hampton SC Regatta and we hope the weather is as kind to us.