Barnt Green Open Meeting Report

Richard Bennett - 03rd June 2007

Sixteen Larks appeared over the bank holiday for the annual racing at this picturesque club. The practice race was held in some very light conditions, and was won by home team Bob & Mandy Suggitt.

Race 1 was held in slightly more breeze, and a decent course set. Unfortunately the wind swung slightly to eliminate a beat. This didn’t stop the flying ‘Team Allen’ (Stuart & Julia) who, sporting a new North main took charge of the proceedings. Despite being challenged by Smashie & Kelsey (2nd), and Dave Young & Nic Booth (3rd) ran away comfortable winners.

The Single Handed race was up next and proved to be as humorous as ever. Bob Suggitt showed his experience appearing at the front of the fleet along with Dave Young and Chris Biglin – expertly flying their kites on their own. Dave proved to be multi-talented and stormed off to take the trophy leaving Bob in 2nd and Chris 3rd.

On to Sunday and much more wind for race 2. A nice 3-4 gusting 5. The fleet got off to a good clean start and it was Smashie & Kelsey leading at the 1st mark from Bob & Mandy who challenged for the lead, but once the leaders had the spinny up they powered off and continued to pull away throughout the whole race building a healthy lead. Behind the front pair was very exciting racing with place changes all the time. Chris & Ann Biglin snatched 2nd with Chris Whitehouse & Chris White climbing to 3rd.

After lunch Race 3 was away with the same course. Smashie & Kelsey again showed some coolness to appear at the front again, this time battling hard with Dave & Nic. The leaders eventually pulling clear, to grab a convincing regatta sealing victory! Dave & Nic took a solid 2nd place with Chris & Chris showing consistency ending in 3rd place.

Race 4 saw arguably the most action of the weekend! Smashie & Kelsey didn’t compete so the race for the lead was exciting with place changing all the way through the race. Chris & Ann found themselves in a good lead only to be blown in on a broad spinnaker reach! Then Chris & Chris took control before they too decided to go swimming! Eventually Stu Hydon & Hannah Showell sailed a smooth race to take the bullet (securing 3rd overall) ‘just’ ahead of the chasing Steve Chatten & Nicola Attwood. Dave & Nic took 3rd to seal 2nd overall. Commiserations to Chris Whitehouse who snapped a brand new mast in this race as the gust strength increased.

Thanks to Barnt Green Sailing club and Bob Suggitt for hosting/organizing the event.