AVEVA September Regatta – The Summer Series of Regattas at the Royal Southern Yacht Club concludes with a flourish this weekend with two national championships and one of the best line-ups of high performance racing yachts of the season. Several IRC classes will be racing at the AVEVA September Regatta, Peter Morton’s Salvo, 2015 Overall RORC IRC National Champion, has confirmed participation. Classic Six Metre and XOD’s will also be in action, as well as a range of Sportsboats.
The J/80 UK National Championship will have three days of racing from the 18th September and the AVEVA September Regatta, incorporating the J/111 UK National Championship, will have two days of racing starting on the 19th September.
Several hundred sailors will enjoy the unrivalled facilities of the Royal Southern Yacht Club, at the newly commissioned Prince Philip Yacht Haven. Corinthian sailors, young and old, will be rubbing shoulders with world champions and round-the-world sailors.
The AVEVA September Regatta will feature one of the best big boat classes seen at the Royal Southern YC for many years, with a bevy of yachts all capable of downwind speed in excess of 20 knots. Mike Bartholomew, will be racing his GP42 Tokoloshe II and is relishing the prospect of racing against hot competition, including Sir Keith Mills’ racing Ker40+ INVICTUS. Mike and Sir Keith, both members of the Royal Southern, have has enjoyed a tremendous battle this season. In July, Tokoloshe II got the better of INVICTUS at the RORC IRC National Championship. In August, INVICTUS beat Tokoloshe II by a single point at Cowes Week. The two yachts have raced each other 14 times in the last two months, the score is 8-6 in favour of Tokoloshe II, so September’s results will be closely watched.
“We had some superb racing during Cowes Week. In one particular race, we were never more than 15 metres apart from Invictus and Rebellion for over four hours. It was unbelievable, with the lead changing hands all the time. I must stress that we don’t just want a few boats racing, the more the merrier is the call. In recent years some regattas have dwindled in numbers but this regatta is building into a good one and it is not just about the high performance boats. Having the mix of classes provides racing for everybody, which is great for the club. There seems to be a renewed vibe at the Royal Southern, creating a happy and enthusiastic atmosphere.”
Royal Southern member, Robert Greenhalgh, added another title to his impressive sailing career last month, winning the Moth European Championship. Robert will be calling tactics on Sir Keith Mills’ INVICTUS.
“The Fast 40+ Class is in its infancy but there are a lot of people excited about it and we are expecting a great turn out this weekend.” commented Robert. “It is absolutely fantastic racing with yachts of a similar size, all going at similar speeds. Keith Mills will be driving and half the crew will be amateur sailors. This is all part of the ethos of the class we hope to nurture – owner driver and a mixture of professionals and amateur sailors.”
The Royal Southern YC has an active J/80 fleet and attracts many more of the class to its Summer Series of Regattas and the annual Grade two Match Cup. Ten races are scheduled for the J/80 UK National Championship over three days. In excess of 20 teams are expected to compete for the championship. The J/80 UK National Championship is also the final race of the Raymarine Championship, a series of seven regattas over the season, Jon Powell’s Betty currently leads the series.
“The series has attracted 32 entrants, and the national championship is the finale with anyone of nine teams capable of winning a prize, so we expect this to be a lively and competitive event.” commented Jon Powell.” I am sure that as we are racing with many other classes, the added numbers will also provide a great social event. I have not visited the Royal Southern since the alterations to the marina, although I believe they are impressive and will provide a great venue for the weekend and for the J/80 World Championship in 2017. The standard of race management is always excellent and with Stuart Childerley as PRO we are in safe hands.”
The AVEVA September Regatta will also incorporate the J/111 UK National Championship, three teams that competed at the 2015 World Championships in Newport, Rhode Island will be taking part; Tony Mack’s McFly, Martin Dent’s Jelvis and Louise Makin’s Journeymaker II. Stuart Sawyer’s Cornish team racing Black Dog winner of the class at the 2015 J-Cup is expected, as is Chris Body’s Icarus and Cornel Riklin’s Lymington based Jitterbug.
Royal Southern member, Chris Jones, helmsman for Journeymaker II, commented. “We had a fantastic World Championships in Newport and great racing at this year’s Cowes Week and Dartmouth Regatta. We are really looking forward to wrapping up the season with the national championship at the Royal Southern. Personally it is nice to be racing out of our own club, it is very noticeable that the Royal Southern has been raising their game in attracting events in by being very pro-active. The club has developed a superb facility and really good race management and you only really notice that when it’s not there. It makes a huge difference that you know when you arrive, you can just get on with your own preparation for the regatta and everything else is just taken care of.”
by Louay Habib