The Cowes Corinthian YC Host Superb Stoneways VPRS Racing
Yachts from the Hamble, Hayling Island and Poole, gathered in Cowes on Saturday 10th June for the Stoneways VPRS National Championships, which is now in its eighth year.
This year the event, hosted by The Cowes Corinthian Yacht Club, started early for those from Poole, with a feeder race on Friday 9th June, organised by Poole Yacht Racing Association. The fleet started just south of Poole Harbour in glorious morning sunshine and the almost predictable Easterly, a fetch to Parkstone YC buoy split the fleet avoiding a strong flood tide.
Dave & Jackie Hale’s, Elan 37, Petasus leading the larger boat classes onto the long beat to Cowes. The smaller yachts being led East by Sarah Kinnane’s, MGC27, Mojito. Racing past the Cape 31’s own Nationals, who were competing in Christchurch Bay provided many with a ring side view of several exciting starts.
Petasus was to hold their lead to the Egypt point finish line, Rob Gibson’s, First 40.7, Addiction winning class 0, and Keith Lovetts, Ecume De Mer, QT was able to close the gap on Mojito and win the smaller yacht fleet on corrected time.
A rendezvous, courtesy of Stoneways Marine Insurance on Friday evening at the Cowes Corinthian enabled all to enjoy a beer, discuss the race, play pool, and meet new competitors from other clubs.
On Saturday, the first full day of racing, under the Cowes Corinthian’s impeccable race management, Race Officer and the Club’s Sailing Secretary, Laurie Tennant had the first start of three races back-to-back, away on time.
As prescribed for the event, the fleet split into two classes, in essence 1 for larger yachts and 2 for the smaller yachts.
In Class 1, Petasus was to lead, closely followed by the Annels’ family racing their Elan 333, Energy. In Class 2, three boats reached the first mark almost simultaneously Mojito and QT, alongside George Beevor’s, Sagitta 33, Ugly Duckling, being helmed by Hedley Bewes. The larger Sagitta broke away on the next reach across the Solent, despite light winds perhaps favouring far lighter boats. Petasus eventually secured line honours, however with Energy close behind they were able to secure the first race win by just one second on corrected time. It was a similar story in Class Two with Ugly Duckling leading on the water and QT close enough on corrected time to take the win.
Race two was quickly underway and provided similar running in both classes, this time Petasus was sufficiently far ahead over the line to win in Class One, with an indentical repeat in Class Two, Ugly Duckling taking line honours however QT taking their second win.
The third and final race of the day provided Petasus with an opportunity to take the overall lead, claiming a second win of the day. In Class Two, frenetic competition saw three alternative boats jostle for the lead at different times. Again, it was QT that was able to strike out into the lead on the penultimate leg and hold their position to the finish. Ugly Duckling and Mojito fighting to the end and finishing just one second apart.
With the fleet ashore, a Stoneways VPRS Class dinner was enjoyed by all at the Cowes Corinthian. Event sponsors, The Sandbanks Brewery providing welcome day one prizes.
On day two, with one long distance race planned for double points, the competition remained wide open. In light South Westerly winds, the fleet headed west with Petasus yet again leading and Energy hot on their transom. Class Two saw QT leading, followed by Charles Lucas-Clements’ First 285, Encounter.
Following a tactical and challenging course, in Class Two’s case a nearly four-hour race around the Solent, these positions were to be maintained, giving Petasus the overall Class One Championship and Class Two to QT with 4 bullets.
Superb close racing in stunning conditions, with the whole class grateful to both The Cowes Corinthian Y C whose organisation could not be faulted, and for the support from The Sandbanks Brewery. To find out more about the VPRS class visit www.vprs.org and for boat insurance with a personal touch www.stoneways.co.uk.
|Class 1 Results||Make/Model||Sail Number||VPRS||Position||Score|
|Petasus||Elan 37||GBR 1293L||0.998||1||6|
|Energy||Elan 333||GBR 6525T||0.957||2||9|
|Addiction||First 40.7||GBR 9859||1.050||3||19|
|Vent des Globe||Figaro 2||GBR 5468L||1.042||4||25|
|Class 2 Results||Make/Model||Sail Number||VPRS||Position||Score|
|QT||Ecume de Mer||GBR 1972||0.834||1||5|
|Encounter||First 285||GBR 4891T||0.853||3||16|
|Ugly Duckling||Sagitta 35||GBR 9967Y||0.914||4||19|