This turned out to be an excellent event with 18 Solo’s taking part including 7 visiting helms.
Jonathan Otter, a member of Papercourt Sailing Club, had traveled from Surrey to take part in this three race regatta. On his return home he wrote a blog for circulation among the 60 strong Solo sailors at his local club and he is happy for me to post this here. (It also saves me writing a report!)
Yesterday I was at Teign Corinthian Yacht Club’s Solo open meeting.
The club is situated on the Teign estuary, down a single track lane, at a place called Coombe Cellars. The Teign here is about as wide as Papercourt is long and stretches a mile to the west to Newton Abbott and a mile east to Shaldon and Teignmouth. Quite similar to Dell Quay, but surrounded by steeply rising hills.
I learned that TCYC is Charlie Cumbley’s home club, having been born in Teignmouth, and more than one of the older members of the club laid claim to having first taught him to sail ! One of his Finns is still in the dinghy park there, pride of place.
The Teign lies east-west and the wind was south-westerley, so the PRO laid a Papercourt-style W course, to give us two beats interspersed with a short broad reach.
The wind was F4 mostly, gusting sharply to F5 and in the last race dropping to F3/F2 at times. We approached high-tide at 1430 and I’d planned a strategy based on a study of the chart, aiming to use/avoid the faster flow in the deeper channel.
18 entrants. Three races, but no discard, which is a bit mean for visitors I think. No pressure then!
Race 1: At the start, I lazily clobbered the leeward boat, and had to do turns, which pushed me down into 15th place. I fought back to 6th by staying left up the beats and then sailing low into the pressure on the downwind legs, where in the last run I overtook (undertook) three boats.
Race 2: I started on the pin end, whilst everyone else was at the committee boat end. After tacking onto port I then sailed across the top of the fleet and lead the race for 1.5 laps. Ian McGregor overtook me on the beat, but I managed to stay close to him, finishing in 2nd, with a large gap between us and the rest of the fleet. Needless to say, I savoured the moment.
Race 3: By now everyone else had realised the line was port biased and piled down to the pin with me. I stayed well left up the beat (it had paid off in the previous races), and rounded the windward mark 3rd, behind Ian McGregor and Simon Hunt. I got overtaken on lap 2, but remained and finished in 4th.
So with a 6-2-4, I was confident of a top 5 position, but was delighted to find out I had finished 3rd overall, behind Ian in 1st and Simon in 2nd.
Upon arrival we were greeted with free hot drinks and buttered buns — a nice touch. The afternoon tea comprised an unlimited quantity of Devon cream tea… home-made scones, jam, and rich, clotted cream. Cream on first, then jam, if you are interested.
I had a very enjoyable day’s sailing. Everyone at the club was friendly and helpful, they had excellent PRO who kept things moving along, a beach crew to help with trolleys and of course, excellent catering. And the most beautiful setting in which to sail.
A glowing report from a visitor to our Club.
I would like to thank all those members who helped to make this a very enjoyable and memorable event.
Full results can be viewed here
Finally, many thanks to Garnett Showell for his photographs and videos of the event.
Ben Miles on port tack hiding behind his sail hoping that Simon won’t see him!
Some close racing
At the start of race 2
Beating to the first windward mark
Jonathan Otter receiving his third place trophy from Race Officer Don Harrison
Overall Winner, Ian McGreger from Salcombe YC
Simon Jones (TCYC) Runner Up