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2015 Sprint 15 National Championships overall
Fleet in action - 2015 Sprint 15 National Championships© Alan Howie Wood

Sprint 15 National Championships 2015 overall

The Sprint 15 National Championships was held at Netley Sailing Club over the long weekend of the 31st July to the 1st August. The 47 Competitors included three boats from this cat-friendly club with one sailed by Luke Scott in his first ever Sprint event.

Sailors came from far and wide with the visitor from Halifax being surprised to be trumped by a visitor from New York. Numbers were down due to an unfortunate need to change the date after many had made holiday plans for the year meaning the fleet just fell out of the 50 plus club for the first time in many years.

The weather was basically perfect with sunshine and sea breezes allowing champagne sailing conditions particularly on the last day and facilitating long recovery sessions on the terrace and later on into the night on the club camp site.

Day one dawned windless but the Race Officer, David Henshall, set a postponement expecting that wind was coming early pm. His highly efficient race team laid the marks for an initially confusing but very sensible and soon to become familiar course providing two long and three shorter beats, three runs and two reaches utilising the full width of Southampton Water when required. This was the day for the light wind experts allowing Robin Boardman and Stuart Snell to shine, closely followed by Paul Grattage sailing one of the new Sprints 15s.

2015 Sprint 15 National Championships overall

Paul Craft ahead of Paul Grattage and Kevin Dutch – 2015 Sprint 15 National Championships© Alan Howie Wood

Day two was more of a mix with again no wind in the morning but an increasing breeze as the races progressed. The breeze, or breezes at times, was shifting allowing tactical advantages for those who spotted them as did the tide running down the start line making it essential to avoid the multiple piles-up at the pin end. Paul Grattage and Robin Boardman dominated with Kevin Dutch, Paul Craft and Jim Bowie featuring as the wind increased. A rare error (OCS) meant Paul Grattage had not won the event by the end of day two and had to compete on the last day. One race was sensibly abandoned after the pilot of a very large container ship had panicked somewhat when confronted by what he described as hundreds of fast moving white sailing boats between him and his destination. Surprisingly some competitors were not sure what the abandonment was for!

Day three was champagne Sunday. A gentle breeze greeted the competitors and this filled into a steady south westerly three by the time they launched. This increased over the day into a boisterous four which with a meaningful chop and sunshine showed the Sprints pedigree off to the full. The heavier conditions suited those who had shone the day before with Kevin Dutch taking Race One and Paul Grattage Race Two, making Grattage National Champion for 2015 and keeping his chances for a clean sweep of 15 major events alive. Other major trophy winners included Christine Roman who took the ladies’ prize, Henry and Simon Giles who took the two up cup, Joe Baker who took the youth prize and Thorpe Bay who won the Team Trophy.

Away from the water the fleet confounded its reputation and socialised hard with the bar full each night and much talking on the terrace serenaded by live music and a sail past by three large cruise ships on the Saturday night. The Association dinner was excellently prepared and served by catering students from Eastleigh College.

Thanks to the weather gods who allowed the locals to boast it is always like this here. David Henshall and the on-the-water team Rosie Parker ( Commodore and non-stop grafter), her son Alex overall event organiser, the shoreside team, the club caterers who were there from dawn until almost dusk and Windsport for the sponsorship and event support as efficiently provided by newbie Windsport Team Member Rosie Snell.

Overall results

Name Club Race 1 Race 2 Race 3 Race 4 Race 5 Race 6 Race 7 Points Place
Paul Grattage Shanklin Sailing Club 2 2 1 48 OCS 1 3 1 7 1
Robin Boardman Halifax Sailing Club 3 1 3 1 9 2 4 10 2
Kevin Dutch Seasalter Sailing Club 12 8 14 3 2 1 2 16 3
Paul Craft Worthing Sailing Club 5 33 48 DNF 2 4 4 3 18 4
Jim Bowie Thorpe Bay Yacht Club 6 5 20 4 3 10 5 23 5
Stuart Snell Grafham Water Sailing Club 1 3 7 7 7 6 9 24 6
Steve Healy Thorpe Bay Yacht Club 4 4 5 20 10 9 14 32 7
Chris Tillyer Thorpe Bay Yacht Club 14 6 2 8 6 19 16 36 8
Paul Roberts Dee Sailing Club 25 10 9 14 12 8 6 45 9
Ed Tuite Dalton Draycote Water Sailing Club 9 9 17 48 DSQ 17 12 11 58 10
Steve Sawford Rutland Water Sailing Club 15 7 23 10 5 48 DNS 48 DNS 60 11
Gary Sverdloff Thorpe Bay Yacht Club 21 21 6 12 13 18 12 61 12
Liam Thom Shanklin Sailing Club 13 22 4 16 15 14 20 62 13 ¹
Simon Giles & Henry Giles Shanklin Sailing Club 10 12 8 23 14 48 DNF 18 62 14 ¹
Luke Scott Netley Sailing Club 23 38 37 15 8 5 15 66 15
Howard Hawkes Snettisham Beach SC 48 OCS 24 12 19 19 7 10 67 16
Mark Hollis Seasalter Sailing Club 27 16 22 17 18 11 7 69 17 ¹
George Love Carsington Sailing Club 11 11 11 11 48 DSQ 29 25 69 18 ¹
Erling Holmberg Shanklin Sailing Club 20 14 10 13 16 48 DNF 23 73 19
John Manning Beaver Sailing Club 18 25 15 5 33 21 21 80 20 ¹
Christine Roman Shanklin Sailing Club 22 13 16 6 23 48 DNF 24 80 21 ¹
Robert England Dee Sailing Club 8 18 25 18 20 30 17 81 22
David Groom Netley Sailing Club 39 39 28 24 11 13 8 84 23
Gary Burrows Thorpe Bay Yacht Club 7 29 33 22 36 15 19 92 24
Keith Persin Thorpe Bay Yacht Club 17 17 30 21 26 23 34 104 25
Richard Harrison Netley Sailing Club 16 37 21 26 29 17 28 108 26
Roger Ackroyd Witham Sailing Club 40 28 18 9 32 28 29 112 27
Steve Roberts Dee Sailing Club 29 27 13 31 48 DNS 22 22 113 28 ¹
Jon Pearse Marconi Sailing Club 26 15 27 25 41 20 30 113 29 ¹
Joe Baker Isle of Sheppy Sailing Club 24 20 24 43 24 27 31 119 30
Gordon Goldstone Queen Mary Sailing Club 36 30 31 34 22 25 13 121 31
Donald Sloan Brightlingsea Sailing Club 32 23 32 27 40 16 33 130 32
Micheal Taylor Thorpe Bay Yacht Club 33 34 19 35 28 24 27 131 33
Gordon Deuce Brightlingsea Sailing Club 34 36 29 33 31 26 26 145 34
Rob Bailey Thorpe Bay Yacht Club 19 19 36 38 39 48 DNF 48 DNS 151 35
John Shenton Shanklin Sailing Club 28 32 34 32 44 38 35 161 36
Andy Richards RYA 35 35 40 48 DNF 21 34 37 162 37
Mark Bunyan Stewartby Water Sports Club 31 31 35 39 30 39 48 DNS 166 38
Bill Hurr Draycote Water Sailing Club 30 42 42 42 27 36 36 171 39
Andy Bunyan Stewartby Water Sports Club 43 44 45 41 25 31 32 172 40 ¹
Alan Grant Thorpe Bay Yacht Club 38 26 44 36 35 37 39 172 41 ¹
Neil Harwood Open Dinghy Club 48 DSQ 43 38 29 38 32 38 175 42
Andrew Berisford Brightlingsea Sailing Club 37 41 39 30 37 33 40 176 43
Gerald Sverdloff and Nathan Sverdloff Thorpe Bay Yacht Club 48 DNS 48 DNS 43 40 34 35 41 193 44
Keith Bartlett Open Dinghy Club 42 48 DNF 41 28 43 48 DNF 48 DNS 202 45
Eric Sales and Amy Foster Seasalter Sailing Club 44 45 26 48 DNS 48 DNS 48 DNF 42 205 46
Paul Shields Seasalter Sailing Club 41 40 46 37 42 48 DNF 48 DNS 206 47

by David Groom

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