RS400 Open Meeting 13th April 2003

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The 2003 RS400 Open at IBRSC was held in glorious warm sunshine and wind, and attracted 21 boats, with 8 from Island Barn. After a training session held on the Saturday, the fleet took part in four competitive races over Sunday April 13th. The conditions produced some spectacular spinnaker runs (some captured on film) as well as a fair few capsizes when crews were caught unawares by sudden gusts. Last year we noted that grey boats were fastest; this year it appears that grey boats had the most capsizes!

Robin Kenyon and Toby Lewis from Hamble River SC took the first two races; in the first race they fought hard with Mike Curtis and Fiona Taylor from IBRSC, only overhauling them with 50 yards to go. Kenyon and Lewis stormed away with the second race, which was enlivened with several capsizes and a magnificent passing manoeuvre from Paul Browning and Jim Champ, rocketing through on the inside of four boats at a downwind mark, all planing with spinnakers flying.

Race 3 followed lunch, and Kenyon and Lewis were never challenged within 50 yards, although considerable battles were going on behind them – it was all in the correct choice of route downwind to get into the gusts. Kenyon and Lewis took their third first place and so with the meeting in the bag, decided not to sail the last race. This was won by Ian Robson and Sandy Johnson from Aldeburgh, after Curtis and Taylor had again led for part of the race. Stuart Elford and Fiona Jubb from IBRSC overhauled Curtis and Taylor on the last spinnaker run to take second place in the final race. Overall Robson and Johnson were second, with Curtis and Taylor just pipped into third as first home boat.

Thank you to the IBRSC Laser sailors who worked so hard and ran the day so efficiently, and to all our exhausted competitors who we hope enjoyed the meeting.