Recently Stoneways Marine Managing Director, Keith Lovett, took part in the annual Stoneways Marine VPRS National Championships which this year were held at Lymington Town Sailing Club. Here is a taster of the weekend.
A smaller than expected fleet of yachts racing under the Stoneways VPRS rating system gathered at Lymington Town Sailing Club for their annual National Championships which had been curtailed since 2019.
Under the watchful eye of Race officer Nigel Wallbank, three races back-to-back led to intense competition in the two classes racing on the first day.
In race one, two JPK 1010’s; Joy and Jaasap led the way in shifting North Easterly conditions. Race two and Joy continued to dominate, however followed home by the Prima 38 – Wild Thing on corrected time.
The Elan 333 – Energy had been working their way up the fleet, coming into their own with a convincing win in race three, Wild Thing second and Joy pushed back to third.
In Class two, a close match race ensued between the MGC 27 – Mojito and my Ecume de Mer – QT, the former with two second places and a win and the latter two wins and a second.
In the evening, 50 sailors enjoyed a superb dinner thanks to Lymington Town SC. The results remained wide open with all to sail for in a long-distance race for double points on day two.
The long distance race saw a course around the Western Solent starting with a running start from Lymington south to the Island shore to avoid Cowes to Torquay power boats racing.
Joy and Wild Thing were soon leading the pack, fighting tide towards Yarmouth. The ever-present Energy was, however, holding on. Similarly, in Class Two Mojito and QT were constantly swapping the lead and with significant tidal gates, neither boat was able to break away.
After four hours of frenetic activity, racing could not have been closer. Following a long beat eastward the fleet enjoyed a close spinnaker reach ‘drag race’ along the northern mainland shore to the finish.
In Class One it was the JPK 1010 Joy that was to secure the win and with double points the Class One National Championships. The Elan 333 Energy, the lowest rated boat in class one, coming a close second and likewise second place overall.
In Class Two, Mojito and QT had swapped place on every leg of the course, rounding the final mark with two boat lengths off each other and proceeded to reach to the finish with neither boat giving an inch. It was QT who was to win by just two seconds to retain the Class Two title that they had previously won in 2019.
Prizes, sponsored by the renowned Lymington artist Stephen Lees, were presented, wrapping up a superb weekend of racing.
We look forward to next year’s event which forms part of the International Paint Poole Regatta in May 2022. With three days of exciting racing planned, coupled with a full social programme ashore.
A final note from Keith:
“As sponsors of the VPRS rating system, it was a natural progression to help by sponsoring the VPRS National Championships. It was great to be involved in some really competitive sailing, which reflects just how well the rating system is working. Special thanks to Lymington Town Sailing Club for all their help in putting together a great event, and for providing lots of hungry sailors with a delicious evening meal on the Saturday. Special thanks as well to all the Race Officers and the rest of the Race Committee, without whom events like this couldn’t happen”.
To find out more about getting a VPRS rating, please visit the website: www.vprs.org