This handicap race is sailed over three days with the trophy awarded to the dinghy with the highest score.
Bank Holiday Weekend 28th, 29th, 30th August 2010
The Dove cup was sailed this year over the three days of the August Bank holiday. On Saturday despite the weather forecast the day looked rather good, not too much wind and not too threatening clouds. Unfortunately, the Safety Boat driver failed to turn up so there was some chaos at the start while a replacement was organized, Ed Hipkin nobly volunteered to step into the breach and set off to drop the buoys. The race officer, Beverley Beech, ably assisted by Keren Hampson set No 5 and No 6 to port and No 1 to starboard - twice; and No 4, No 3 and No 1 to starboard, five times.
As the count-down to the start proceeded the clock, for some reason, stopped at 4 minutes, causing some consternation in the box, but the race officer, after giving the box a clout, and not knowing how long it is stopped, decided to continue and sounded a long 1 minute hooter, expecting the sailors to pay close attention to the flags. Puzzled sailors could be seen looking at their watches and Kevin shot across the line before realizing that there was a minute to go. He returned and caught up the rest of the fleet.
Shortly after the start the wind increased to a Force 3, Westerly, with some vigorous gusts, much to the consternation of Sarah Arnott, who had gamely taken out a Laser hoping to gain some experience. She certainly gained experience at capsizing, and after completing the first lap decided that she had practiced enough and called it a day. When asked how many times she had capsized she acknowledged that she had lost count.
Gallah and Katrin in Rhubarb fared a little better, they retired during the second lap. In the meantime, the laser fleet were having a great deal of fun. Robin Johnson lay second but by the second lap he gained first place and maintained it for the remaining six laps, closely followed by Peter Lee and Kevin Seebaluck with Jacques Picon bringing up the rear. Kerstin Exner and Michael Fink finished fifth and followed by Ahrat, Audrey and Silke in the Vision.
On Sunday the sailors met conditions described by Robin Johnson as amongst the most challenging he has experienced in 30+ years of sailing at LCSC. Only two sailors competed on the day, Robin Johnson and Kevin Seebaluck.
Monday saw a decent wind from the North East. The cup deed states one race can be discarded with two to count so it pays to turn out for all three races. Past president Tony Robinson was on hand to present the Cup which he reminded was donated by a previous landlord of the Dove pub and pier. Apparently a very decent party was put on to celebrate the purchase of the pub at which the pub was literally drunk dry of beer leaving guests to finish off with a choice of neat whisky or gin - no mixers either.
Anyway back to the present day. The results over three days were:
By Beverley Beech and Peter Hallett
24 to 26 May 2008
The weather on Saturday morning did not bode well. Lots of wind, NE Force 3-4 gusting 5-6, but sunny. Only five sailors turned up, Clive Kitson with Illigitimus and Beverley Beech and Tuck-Key Lock and James Wright and Andy Brownen in Enterprises.
The wind ensured an exciting launch and the tide was horrendous. Clive Kitson shot off like a rocket closely followed by Beverley and Tuck. The run down to no 6 was thrilling as the dinghy kicked up a huge bow wave while Beverley and Tuck struggled to keep the boat level. Clive gybed rounded no 6 (off the Surrey bank opposite the island) without a problem. As Beverley and Tuck neared the buoy an even stronger gust encouraged them to tack around rather than gybe. The beat back to the start line and No 1 buoy was really hard, any slight error in tacking meant that the ground gained was lost in seconds, and then some.
Clive, whose tacking was admirable, shot ahead while James and Andy struggled to right their dinghy after a spectacular gybe; even though they managed to bale out the dinghy they capsized again, and reluctantly accepted a tow from Charles Frater and Andre Gareh.
The race officer shortened the race once Clive rounded no 1. Beverley and Tuck came to grief approaching No1 with a dry capsize (that is, neither of the crew ended up in the water). Unfortunately, the the dinghy filled with water and despite four reaches across the river (much to the delight of the drinkers in The Ship) the dinghy did not empty appreciably. Being so close to the Club’s pontoon was too much of a temptation - they retired and staggered ashore utterly shattered.
On Sunday the wind had abated to Force 4 NE, gusting 5. Five Laser sailors turned up and the run down to No 6 was exciting, but without mishap. Val rounded the buoy first, closely followed by Clive Kitson, but as time progressed the fleet spread out.
Malcolm Dancy deserved a prize for determination, stamina, and management of dry capsizes. We counted ten capsizes during the race and wondered how he was not totally the exhausted, but he carried on to the end and finished in style half an hour after the leader.
On Monday the wind was now Force 3, NW and gusting, and pouring with rain. Nothing daunted, Clive Kitson, Val Nedyelkov took out Lasers and Gareth Llewellyn and Peter Druce an Enterprise with a reefed sail. As there were so few sailors a short course was laid. Three races (with two laps each) and the best of the three counting towards the final score.
Val shot ahead on the first start with a spectacular run down to No4, he generously decided to give Clive the chance to catch up by sailing half-way along the island before realising he had missed the buoy. His generosity allowed Clive a lengthy lead and he won the first race. Gareth Llewellyn and Peter Druce developed an interesting tactic of beating across the river on each tack. By the time they rounded No2 buoy to start the second lap the race officer was already signalling the start of the second race. Peter Druce took over the helm in time for them to start the third race.
Val won the second race and kept the lead for the third, sometime later the Enterprise finished, having given the race officers, Gavin Robertson and Ed Hipkin lots of thrills as they spilled the wind in the gusts but successfully avoided capsizing, despite the vigorous gusts.
Final overall results
- Val Nedyelkov - Dancing Pearl
- Clive Kitson - Illigitimus
- Gareth Llewellyn and Peter Druce
by Beverley Beech
- Race Officer: Robbie Robertson and Ed Hipkin
- Safety Boat: Charles Frater and Beverley Beech
Copyright © London Corinthian Sailing Club, 2010