ISO Open Essex YC (9th & 10th May 2009)

Over the weekend of the 9/10th of May the Essex Yacht Club in sunny Leigh on Sea hosted its first ISO open meeting for nearly 15 years. Along with 6 local boats and 2 visiting we raced a total of 4 windward/leeward races in varied but generally light conditions.

Race 1 saw local magician George Chambers and son Jeff take an early lead and held on to the end challenged only by travellers Ceilidh Higgs and Alex Benfield in 568. Moving into race 2 the haze cleared and as the sun warmed the Essex countryside the weightier teams hoped for a much needed sea breeze to get us on the wire.....In fact the opposite happened after starting in a dying F2 all but 2 of the fleet were 'parked up' at the top mark in zero wind and the early ebb. As we bobbed around for 20mins it was newcomer Cass Monk who picked up the first line of breeze and swiftly moved from last to first....where he would have remained had he not forgotten to gybe off towards the bottom mark! The final leg of the race proved very exciting with Team Harniman 1178 just holding off challenges from Adam Smith/ Brian Harris (913) & George/Jeff (1167). A very tight finish with the whole fleet finishing within 70sec of each other and recorded gaps of 1 second between some boats!

Day 2 brought more sunshine and also the appearance of ISO maestro Bob Ladell with newly recruited EYC crew, in a flukey breeze Bob showed the fleet the way and took victory in race 3. For the final race of the weekend the sea breeze arrived and a great racing followed; plenty of position changes,dumped kites and a few capsizes. After 3 very close (and for some wet laps) race 4 was taken by the Harnimans....this meant that after countback the winners of the whole event were Nigel and Steve Harniman 1178 (EYC), 2nd George Chambers 1167 (EYC) and 3rd Alex and Ceilidh 568 (HerneBay).

Thanks as always to race officers and support boat crews and also to the Essex yacht club, in particularly Bruce Bowler for organising a fantastic weekends racing. The Essex certainly enjoyed hosting this event and look forward to doing the same next season.

Overall Results Here