Dragon Regatta Easter 2012 11 Apr 2012
Eighteen Dragons entered the traditional Royal Corinthian Yacht Club regatta held over Easter, including four visitors and two newcomers to the Burnham Fleet. This was a really good start to the sailing season in Burnham and the whole fleet is looking forward to great racing over the next eight months. Mark and Mandy Wade, fleet captains, organised four varied days racing, starting off with a town course drifter on Friday afternoon. Luckily the wind held for the fleet to complete racing with visitor Eric Williams sailing Ecstatic crewed by Katie Cole and Andrew ‘Noddy’ Norden, coming second to local maestro Rob Campbell in Quicksilver V .
Saturday was a bit on the grey side and cold but the Quicksilver V crew of Matt Walker and Jonathan Hill helped their skipper to two bullets and a 4th. The first race set by Kim Allen and Edwin Buckley on board Phoebe was a windward leeward in a light and shifty north breeze. Navigating strong tides and muddy shallows in the Roach tested a few crews but Mark Wade and Mandy with Tom Makey in Avalanche gained a 2nd swiftly followed up by a first in the second race of the day.
The fleet was moved to the Crouch for this and the third race as the wind veered to the east. Rob Sheppard, visitor from the Medway, showed early consistency in Esoteric in the first two races including a 2nd in race three. Rob proved to be reasonably consistent throughout the series achieving 5th overall. Fleet newcomers, the Brown family, helmed by Jono, gained a morale boosting 3rd in race four with the Strauss family in their new boat Rumours also achieving an uplifting 4th. Ecstatic showed great form with two 3rds and a 2nd.
Many of the fleet enjoyed a club supper in the evening followed by dancing to local band SORTED – leading to something of a slow start for some on Easter Sunday. However the wind set in to steady 3 from the south giving us some very good racing in the Roach. Scorpio with Ian Gray on the helm posted a 4th and a 3rd and Ganador helmed by Mark Lees crewed by Jessica Makey and her old dad put by two 4ths.
The front of the fleet was very consistent, Quicksilver V showing best form with two 1sts and a 2nd over the Ecstatic team’s 3rd, 1st & 2nd. The club laid on a very good dinner for the fleet and guests on Sunday night with daily prizes of Easter eggs liberally distributed.
Race 8 was really a competition for third place (first and second already decided) held in traditional bank holiday weather – drizzly rain and a solid 4-5 from the SW. However, most teams made it out to the start and enjoyed lively and crew testing racing. Mike Holmes’ Hands Off led the fleet to the leeward mark and achieved 3rd place. Scorpio managed 2nd and ended up on series equal points with Avalanche who won 3rd overall on count back.
Eric Williams’ Ecstatic on 13 points with two discards showed most locals the way, winning 2nd overall. But the champion of the series with only 6 points and winner of the Burnham Dragon Easter Bowl was the Quicksilver V team of Rob Campbell, Matt Walker and Jonathan Hill. A superb display of consistent sailing!
Prize giving welcomes were given to newcomers to the fleet David Lenz in Furie Jacket, the Brown family in Storm and our visitors Ecstastic, Rumours, Esoteric and Scimitar. Fleet thanks were given to Edwin Buckley, Kim Allen, Team Phoebe and mark layers Mark and Roger in the club RIB for the windward leeward races, and club race officer Bruce Burnett and to Mark and Mandy for organising a great regatta with further thanks to all helpers.
Full results are available here…