Day Boat Nationals 2002 Poole Yacht Club

This years Yachting World Day Boat National Championships where held under the burgee of Poole Yacht Club from the 11th to the 16th of August. Racing in this traditional class was as ever very close with the championship winner not being decided until the last leg of the final race.

Racing got underway on the Sunday afternoon with a long harbour race in 15 knots of breeze. For the visiting boats a lead boat was provided to show the fleet around the course. At the windward Mark one of the championship favourites Colin Rainback led from Fiona Kiely and Nigel Young sailing their new boat Pa Pa with Peter Hewitt the Rachael Bullingham the defending champions chasing hard. The course then took the fleet in to the lee of Brownsea Island against a flooding tide. It was here where local knowledge and a certain amount of luck saw Murray and Teresa Glenister sailing Day Dreamer take the lead which they were able to hold until the finish for what proved to be an extremely popular win . Second was Ron Lovett and third Peter Hewitt.

The second race for the championship got under way the following afternoon and saw the fleet sailing on their more accustomed triangle sausage courses. This certainly seemed to suit Brendon Pell who sailing with his father Geoff used safe tactics and their good up wind speed to hold of the challenges of Peter Hewitt (649) and Colin Rainback (633) to win the race.

Race three was again held in a 10 to 12 knot breeze and took the boats around the harbour again this time up towards Rockley and Wareham. This race again proved to be a good one for Brendon in Ozone friendly who took his second race win of the championship followed by Fiona Kiely, who was getting to grips with her new boat, and beginning to worry some of more seasoned day boat sailors with her speed.

The Wednesday of Day Boat week is traditionally the long distance race, the results of which do not count towards the overall championships. It also brought a slightly earlier start to the racing. This coupled with the classes antics at the previous evening’s barn dance !!! led to a few noticeable absentees from the start line.

The course for the day took the fleet around Green Island and then Brownsea Island with the finish at the Yacht Club line. With a very light breeze blowing the fleet set off towards Green Island first round was Geoff Pell, who had switched roles with Brendon (535). They had a lead that looked safe as the rest of the course was 95% reaching. However, Peter Hewitt and Rachael Bullingham (649) had other ideas and finally managed to pass the Pells 500 yards from the finish line. 3rd was James Hewitt sailing with Simon Bullingham in (652).

Thursday saw the fleet on the triangle courses again and was once again dominated by Brendon and Geoff Pell 2nd was Murray Glenister who was having a very consistent week and 3rd Fiona Kiely.

Going into the final race Brendan was looking good to take home the prize he has been after for several years. However, with 3 other boats in with a chance if things went badly wrong Brendon could not afford to slip up. With a short delay posted due to lack of wind the fleet finally got away at 3pm in a light 5 knot breeze. First to the top mark was Tim Parkinson sailing Avocet (565) proving that wooden boats are still very competitive, second was Murray (621) and 3rd was Colin Rainback (633). At this point Brendon was back in the middle of the fleet fighting desperately to make up places.

At the second visit to the windward mark Avocet held a healthy lead. He was followed by Murray who unfortunately hit the mark. This let James Hewitt and Simon Bullingham into second who were closely pursued by Peter Hewitt. On this leg the wind started to fade and the race officer took the decision to shorten the course and finish the fleet at the wing mark. With some lucky puffs and good crew work Peter managed to work his way past Tim Parkinson to win the last race, The rather lardy team of James Hewitt and Simon Bullingham somehow managed to coax their borrowed boat down the reach to finish ahead of Avocet.

With the first three results as they were this gave Brendon the overall Championship second overall went to Peter Hewitt and Rachael Bullingham and third to the very consistent team of Murray and Teresa Glenister who also won the Married Couples trophy.

The prize giving dinner was held later that evening and demonstrated what a large following the class has with well over 100 members and guests present.

Thanks must be given to Poole Yacht Club who hosted the event, the catering and bar staff who provided first-rate meals for all the crews, the race officer, Laurie Thornton - Grimes, who set excellent courses throughout the whole week. and John and Phil Lokier whose efforts in organising the event were greatly appreciated by all those who took part in this fantastic week of sailing and socialising.

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