© Simon Cox

Lark Masters Championships Report

Justin Jones & Lucy Eva - 02nd October 2007

Frensham Pond Sailing Club hosted the 3rd Lark Masters Championships on the 29th-30th September 2007. The Saturday morning brought light and shifty conditions for the fleet of mature Larkies to contend with.

After a typical general recall the officer of the day raised the Z flag (which implied a 20% penalty) and the racing got under way. Bob Suggitt crewed by Josh Stuart took an early lead from John & Sue Billington and hour of close racing ensued and the Billingtons finally took the win closely followed by Suggit & Stuart, Justin Jones & Lucy Evans came 3rd.

Races 2 and 3 were to be sailed back to back on the Saturday afternoon but after an hour of no wind the OOD decided to abandon racing for the day.

The social on the Saturday night was greatly anticipated and about 50 sat down to a three-course meal. The evening was a success with some very interesting dance moves displayed to the music provided by the aptly named band ‘Mid Life Crisis’.

The Sunday morning arrived with slightly more breeze, Race 4 started at 11am. Justin Jones and Lucy Evans took an early lead closely followed by Andy & Katie Shorrocks. The Billingtons had a close race with Clive Eplett & Bryony Gregory, the race finished with the Shorrocks’ in 1st but had incurred the 20% penalty for being over at the start so had to take 4 points, Jones & Evans finished 2nd but they were OCS so the Billingtons took 2nd place and Eplett & Gregory were 3rd.

Race 5 started after lunch in the best breeze of the weekend Chris Ellis and Becky Hopwood led round the first mark closely followed by Jones & Evans and Suggitt & Stuart. Chris Ellis and Justin Jones broke away from the rest of the fleet with Jones & Evans eventually taking the lead and holding on until the finish with Ellis & Hopwood finishing 2nd and Suggitt & Stewart 3rd.

Race 6 was started back to back with race 5, three boats were still in contention, Billington, Jones and Suggitt. Nigel Hufton and Helen Scott led round the first mark with a lead of about 4 boat lengths. As the wind dropped it was Chris Ellis who spotted the pressure and shift on the right hand side of the beat to make a massive gain from 9th to 1st place in one beat! There was a close race between Jones, Billington and Suggitt with places changing constantly through out the race. Ellis & Hopwood came 1st Jones & Evans managed to finish in 2nd place with the Billingtons finishing in 3rd place.

This left Justin Jones and John Billington on equal points after the last race, after countback Justin Jones and Lucy Evans took the title. Thanks to Frensham Pond SC for putting on an excellent event.

Overall Results 1st 2489 Justin Jones & Lucy Evans, South Staffs 6 pts
2nd 2499 John & Sue Billington, South Staffs 6 pts
3rd 2469 Chris Ellis & Becky Hopwood, Frensham Pond 8 pts
4th 2467 Bob Suggitt & Josh Stuart, Barnt Green 9 pts
5th 2339 Andy & Katie Shorrocks, Frensham Pond 12 pts
6th 2472 Clive Eplett & Bryony Gregory, Frensham Pond 18 pts
7th 2462 Nick Marlow & Ruth Marlow, Northampton 19 pts
8th 2507 Dave Young & Amy Finney, South Staffs 20 pts
9th 2470 Nigel Hufton & Helen Scott, Frensham Pond 21 pts
10th 2311 Emma Harris & Nikki Curwen, Waldringfield 29 pts
11th 2330 Adrian Williams & Emma Stokes 33 pts
12th 2322 Dan Shaw & Jane Maclaren, Frensham Pond 35 pts
13th 12 Philip Whitney & Lynda Whitney, Frensham Pond 35 pts
14th 2222 Graham & Sarah Castle, Banbury 36 pts
15th 2223 Fiona Gray & Helen Winward, Waldringfield 40 pts
16th 2232 Mike Owen & Karen Jewkes. South Staffs 41 pts
17th 2504 Andy & Kate Jones, Chew Valley 44 pts

Apprentice Master: Justin Jones
Master: John Billington
Grand Master: Chris Ellis
First Helm and crew over 35: John & Sue Billington
Oldest Combined Helm & Crew: Nick & Ruth Marlow
First Helmswomen: Emma Harris