Oliver and Peter took part in the IOM Veterans National Championship in Eastbourne on 25/26 April. 47 skippers participated, with the fleet split into 4 heats. Oliver came a very creditable 13th, with Peter slipping to 14th, after having a very good first day.

Saturday started with a drizzle and at times gusty mid A-rig wind. This was particularly challenging at the gate marks, with uncontrollable running boats trying to get through a narrow gate and then reversing course rapidly to avoid the concrete bank. Peter was completely taken out having been 2nd or third, and was awarded average points after claiming redress. Peters boat seemed to be a magnet for others throughout the weekend and he was fouled many times, costing him valuable places. Oliver had got his rig just right for the first few races, but couldn’t get it right as the wind changed. Nevertheless, at the end of Saturday, both were well placed.

Sunday started with little or no wind – and what there was changed direction before a race could be started. The first race (A fleet heat in Race 5) was delayed by about an hour, but the wind steadied up for the rest of the day. The Race Officer decided to run with 3 fleets to speed up the schedule, which worked well, with a total of 13 races being completed (including the initial ranking race). Oliver finally got his rig right – in time for the last race in which he managed a 6th.

The event was generally well run, with only one protest I believe. However, there are some competitors who seem to have scant regard for the racing rules and believe that whatever they do, they are ‘right’. The observers were again pretty good, but some had to be reminded to call attention to (blatant) mark hitting as certain skippers just sailed blithely on.

Nearly half the boats were ‘Britpops’, but it was pleasing (to me anyway) that Barry Chisam’s boats (‘Asbo’, ‘Psycho’) came 12th 13th and 14th.

Full results can be seen at http://www.edmyc.org.uk/index_files/EDMYCevents.htm and clicking on the Veterans event, and I am sure there will a full report coming out soon.