Fireball, Merlin Rocket & GP14 Event A Huge Success

A great big thank you to the almost 60 teams that joined us for the 2017 GP14 Southern Area Championship and Fireball and Merlin Rocket Open Meetings over the weekend of 3 and 4 June.  It was fantastic to have so many visitors with us for the weekend and the weather gods definitely smiled on us by providing warm weather and great sailing breeze with a bit of something for everyone.

The GP14s fielded 18 crews competing for the right to call themselves GP14 Southern Area Champion 2017.  It was a tight competition with Fergus Barntam and Andy Hunter of Snettisham SC taking victory by a four point margin over Peter Grey and Richard Peperdine of Staunton Harold SC with Andrew Clewer and Sarah Collingwood of Poole YC a further two points behind in third.

The Merlin Rockets fielded the largest fleet with 19 teams from as far afield as Starcross and Lyme Regis taking part.  Chris Gould and Chris Gilsby from Midlands SC put in a great performance to win the regatta counting a 1, 1, 1, 2 scoreline with their only slight stumble coming in race four where they none the less finished sixth.  The battle for second place was extremely close but victory in the final race gave Tim Saxton and Caroline Croft from Grafham Water SC the second step on the podium, with William Warren and Mark Oakley from Shoreham SC third.

Just a single point separated first and second place in the Fireball fleet with  Vince Horey and Robert Gardiner of King Georges SC claiming the narrow victory over Kevin Hope and Russell Thorne of Notts County SC.  Our own Pete and Tom Kyne did us proud claiming third place overall.

We’d also like to say a huge thank you to our Race Officer Phil Rust and his team for laying on a great regatta, to Vice Commodore Martin Worth and the Sailing Committee for all their advance work in putting the event together and managing the backroom activities throughout the weekend, to Joint Vice Commodore’s House Ian and Tina Hastings and their wonderful galley volunteers who did such a great job of keeping everyone fed and watered and to all our volunteer members who gave up their time to help make this event such a great success for both the competitors and the club.

Full results can be found at www.fireball-merlinrocket-gp14-open.sailbrightlingsea.com/results/ and we very much hope to welcome all three fleets back to Brightlingsea Sailing Club again very soon.

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