Well done Gibbo!
Full report to follow, but 57 boats (wow!), great hospitality, a short AGM and some cracking sailing.
Robin Kirby wins the Silver fleet, securing his place in the Gold fleet for the next 2 years.
From Yachts and Yachting - courtesy of Alex Collins
Weird and 'not so wonderful' conditions greeted the competitors for the 2015 Supernova Inland Championship at Northampton Sailing club on the 5th of September. Light but shifty conditions were also accompanied by freak gusts and big holes, which was at the very least, tough for the sailors.
As the morning went on, more and more sailors arrived and before long, an incredible 57 Supernovas turned out for the event. After a briefing by the clubs commodore and the race officer the competitors got their boats rigged and headed out to face the ever-changing conditions.
The first race of the inlands saw Mr Consistent Mike Gibson lead straight from go. The Master showed the rest of the fleet how to do it by rounding the first mark in the lead and holding that position right to the finish. The usual suspects were at the front of the fleet in the changeable conditions with Tim Hand taking a 2nd and Alex Collins a 3rd with the likes of Andy Flitcroft, Matt Biggs and Gavin Young following closely behind.
Gibson again showed the whole fleet how it's done, by leading from start to finish with blistering pace and height. National champion Cliff Milliner recovered from a slow start to take 2nd behind Gibson after a fight with Collins and Mike Critchley throughout the first few legs. The true competitiveness of the event was becoming clear as there were battles throughout the fleet, which made for some truly exciting racing.
After a great lunch provided by Northampton's galley staff, The sailors headed out for the 3rd race of the day. Straight away, Duncan Adams (who turned up during lunch) sailed into the distance as other sailors tried their hardest to stay in contact. Tim Hand, the Critchley brothers and Alex Collins were found to be, as usual, at the top of the fleet. Gibson incurred a penalty at the first mark and after winning the first two races of the day, found himself back in 10th place. Hand had a coming together with a lump of weed on the last beat and despite stopping dead in the water and dropping to 5th, he still managed to gain back 2nd place at the finish ahead of the fast mark 1 of Alex Horlock in 3rd, Tony Critchley in 4th and Collins in 5th.
The start of race 4 saw Gibson and Critchley lead the fleet around the first mark ahead of Collins, Hand and Ian Horlock. Up the 2nd beat, Collins was able to play the middle of the beat to come out ahead of the fleet where he was chased down by the rest of the competitors. The next 2 laps saw very close racing as the likes of Critchley and Gibson battled to try and pass Collins but he was able to hold it to the line. Critchley took 2nd ahead of Gibson in 3rd, Hand in 4th and Horlock in 5th.
The first race of the day was run in light and relatively shifty conditions amongst bright sunshine. Mike Gibson lead out of the blocks to lead around the first mark followed by Alex Horlock in his mark 1, Alex Collins and Mike Critchley. On the downwind Horlock was passed by Critchley and Collins who was by this time fighting to gain an overlap at the next mark. As the leaders approached the mark, Gibson made a mistake and went the wrong way, which enabled Collins to gain the lead. From that point on, the race was led by Collins who covered Gibson until the line. Behind them, Tim Hand had gained several places to finish 3rd, Mike Critchley took 4th and Iain Horlock finished just ahead of his brother in 5th.
So with 1-point difference going into the final race It was a straight fight between Gibson and Collins for the overall event win.
Pre race, Collins followed his competitor to make sure he stayed near him for the start, but a mistake meant that when the start gun went, Collins was on the tail of Gibson straight away. Approaching the first mark, Gibson lead the front runners who included Hand, A Horlock, Andy Flitcroft, Ray Workman and Collins. As the race progressed, Collins tried everything to catch up to Gibson, but the Master sailed a perfect race to gain another race win and with it, the event. Behind him, Workman took a brilliant 2nd, Hand 3rd, A Horlock 4th and Collins 5th.
So after 2 days of full-on racing for the whole fleet, Mike Gibson was crowned the inland champion ahead of Alex Collins and Tim Hand. This was Mike's 4th time as champion, having previously won the event from 2008-2010. A big well done to Mike who is certainly having a good year with incredible pace and consistency, also a big well done and thank you is due to all the competitors who turned up for the event and also for the classes AGM which followed it.
The final thank you goes to Northampton Sailing Club for, as always, putting on a great event. The welcoming atmosphere and truly great organisation meant that the event went ahead without any problems in difficult conditions, so the class says a big thank you to all those involved.
|3rd||1130||Tim Hand||Sutton‑in‑A SC||2||‑6||2||4||3||3||14|
|4th||1079||Cliff Milliner||Cotswold SC||7||2||6||‑12||8||11||34|
|6th||631||Alex Horlock||Exe SC||10||‑13||3||13||6||4||36|
|8th||1092||Iain Horlock||Exe SC||14||‑26||7||5||14||6||46|
|9th||1104||Gavin Young||Cotswold SC||6||9||‑20||7||9||15||46|
|14th||1109||Ray Workman||Cotswold SC||25||‑40||12||14||18||2||71|
|15th||582||Alan Bishop||Girton SC||‑31||29||17||15||7||7||75|
|17th||1073||Matt Williams||Cotswold SC||16||5||23||17||20||‑33||81|
|18th||1060||Paul Undrell||Havershan SC||8||7||24||16||‑39||30||85|
|20th||1129||Chris Williams||Cotswold SC||20||24||14||21||‑25||22||101|
|21st||1124||Paul Earnshaw||Havershan SC||23||10||8||11||(DNF)||DNS||103|
|22nd||1123||Jon Pebody||Hunts SC||21||17||18||26||‑38||23||105|
|23rd||1121||Steve Johnson||Cotswold SC||19||‑25||19||23||22||25||108|
|24th||703||Brian Smith||Bowmoor SC||34||‑36||22||27||15||19||117|
|27th||1052||Phil Davies||Scammonden Water SC||‑36||21||21||25||29||26||122|
|28th||649||Anthony Bleasdale||Gurton SC||33||34||‑45||36||16||13||132|
|29th||10X||Duncan Adams||Attenborough SC||(DNC)||DNC||1||10||DNC||12||139|
|30th||1087||Mike Walker||Bowmoor SC||17||30||34||28||31||‑35||140|
|32nd||705||Richard Lambert||Blue Circle SC||35||22||30||37||33||‑41||157|
|33rd||1068||Pete Bingham||Bowmoor SC||‑49||14||46||34||34||34||162|
|34th||1059||Chris Watts||Bough Beech SC||26||41||36||35||‑44||27||165|
|35th||1093||John Walpole||Exe SC||39||27||28||31||41||(DNC)||166|
|36th||1090||Iain Barlow||Attenborough SC||29||37||43||‑46||21||38||168|
|37th||613||Mike Malcolm||Havershan SC||‑40||33||29||33||40||37||172|
|38th||1153||Paul Bloom||Snettisham Beach||38||35||26||42||‑49||39||180|
|39th||10||David Scott||Elton SC||46||51||53||(DNC)||24||10||184|
|40th||1057||Ian Casewell||Reading SC||45||‑50||39||44||28||28||184|
|42nd||1156||Rob Corner||Attenborough SC||43||‑49||37||29||47||36||192|
|43rd||1139||Sam Hood||Cotswold SC||30||45||32||‑47||45||40||192|
|44th||494||Keith Johnson||Girton SC||32||46||‑49||39||46||31||194|
|45th||1135||Gordon Tweedle||Havershan SC||‑54||54||44||52||27||20||197|
|46th||1141||Robert Hills||Cotswold SC||‑53||38||50||41||30||46||205|
|47th||639||Patrick Rohart||Welwyn GC||41||32||‑48||40||48||44||205|
|48th||684||D Bexson||Attenborough SC||28||‑52||47||38||50||47||210|
|49th||598||Serena Stewardson||Emberton Park SC||51||23||‑54||51||42||49||216|
|51st||1091||Shaun Smale||Welwyn GC SC||48||42||38||50||‑52||48||226|
|52nd||706||Marcus Shaw||Girton SC||50||53||35||32||(DNC)||DNC||228|
|55th||1099||Peter Houseley||Sutton‑in‑A SC||37||47||42||45||(DNC)||DNC||229|
|57th||707||Ian White||Emberton Park SC||55||55||‑56||54||53||50||267|