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24/08/2006
GUL RS200 National Championship Exe SC

  • Crewsaver EOS Champs
  • 2012 RS EOS Champs
  • Llandegfedd Open 2013
  • RS 10th Anniversary Ball
  • RS200 Eurocup, YC Carnac, May 2018
  • RS200 Eurocup, YC Carnac, May 2018
130 boats at the GUL RS200 Nationals The GUL RS200 National Championships was a run away success by any criteria you choose to judge an event on; well beyond what anyone had a right to hope for. To many seasoned Championship sailors, Exe SC re- defined how well a friendly, smallish, voluntary club can run a large Championship; believe me they have raised the bar for all clubs including the more professionally led ones. Also raising the bar were the 130 boat fleet who not only lifted the roof of the club with the socials, literally when the Gebhard clan climbed up there on the final night but also on the water with the quality of the racing. The front of the fleet reads like a who’s who of recent British one design racing and the depth of the fleet is now scary! There were a couple of very interesting and welcome additions to the fleet this year including many 420 and 29er squad sailors gaining experience of big fleets and, adding a real international flavour, two boats who had travelled from south of Tokyo to compete - very popular competitors they proved. 130 boats represents the biggest two man class championship this year even including the junior/youth classes, firmly establishing the RS200 as the number one two man boat and the class to win. The race management on the water was also to a very high standard with the designer of the RS200, Mr Phil Morrison, proving that not only is he a genius when designing boats for us all to have so much fun in, but a damn fine PRO as well. A top team backed him on the water so we had good courses even in shifty northerly winds with very little hanging around; in ten gate starts there was only one recall. The weather played ball reasonably well with full on hiking for 8 races and only one fairly ‘orrible light wind race when great big black clouds destroyed a decent south-westerly to leave a 6 knot patchy north breeze. Roger and Katrina Gilbert started like a run away train having a 1.1.1.2 scoreline after two days of decent breezes. A 2.7 on the third day left them still well clear but the ultra consistent Geoff Carveth/Fiona Clark were packing in top five results to stay in touch. On day 4 the Gilberts appeared human, leading race 7 they lost out to Carveth on a run finishing 4th and then finished 48th in the light airs of race 8. This left them 2 points clear bit with Carveth discarding a 5th so it appeared game on for the final day. The Gilberts escaped Carveths attempts to slow them down and easily led race 9 in 15-18 knots only to be caught by local hero Lee Sydenham/Jane Willan getting back to form after a whole season out with a shoulder injury. Carveth/Clark were third so there still only three points in it going into the final race, but the Gilberts were in majestic form and were clear half way up the first beat to win overall in the best possible way. The Hewitsons just won the titanic battle for third from the big improvers of the year Nick Charles/Juliet Kingsnorth. The fleet then recovered from the shock of Roger telling some funny jokes in his speech before producing another true classic final night RS party. It was just such a good week, the atmosphere ashore was so friendly and relaxed, nothing was too much trouble, the beer was cheap, top cakes, free ice creams when you tallied off, so many people enjoying themselves and the worst ever karaoke performance ever seen. I cannot wait till next year; if it’s half as good it will be legendary. Pete Vincent
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