Round 1&2 of the 2020 TT at Birkenhead

Rounds 1&2 of the 2020 TT took place at Birkenhead on 14 & 15 March.

Round 1

Conditions as the 18 sailors arrived at the club did not seem to match the forecast with a light and fitful SE breeze blowing from the clubhouse and overcast conditions.  Race Officer Martin Roberts setup for a Windward Leeward course using a spreader mark and a single leeward mark for the first few races.  Alex Cory (minus 10) convincingly took the first race having been in the right place for the breeze off the line.  John Tushingham (Scurry) then took the wins for races 2 and 3, with John Brierley (Uno) and Vernon Appleton (Argon) taking podium places in two of those races.  After fixing a problem with his boat, Tobias Laux (Nuraghe) then picked up a win in his first race, with Peter Baldwin (Pocket Rocket), taking the win in race 5, before a break in racing took place for a hot drink.

After the break the RO had moved the course around as the breeze moved to more of a Southerly direction, but with large shifts as the gusts came over the houses and down onto the water.  It was also time for a light shower dampening everyone’s enthusiasm, although the wind shifts were not making it easy for anyone. In the second session before lunch, Alex took two more wins, with John Brierley and Tobias one each.

After lunch, there was a further course change for the RO to complete as the wind was not settling down in direction and if anything increasing slightly in strength.  Alex again made the most of the conditions winning two further races and taking two seconds, with Noel Donaldson (Uno) and Peter one each.  The last session of three races, saw wins for John Tushingham, John Brierley and Tobias.

When the scores were totalled up after 16 races, there was a tie on 35 points between Alex Cory and John Tushingham, with Alex taking the overall win with a greater number of wins (5) against John who only had 3.  The final podium place went to John Brierley five points behind them.  The final results showed seven different designs in the first seven places, although the “Minus 10” is a narrower derivative of the Scurry and seemed suited to the conditions we had during this day.

Thanks to Martin Roberts, Bernie and Judith for running the racing and Chris for running the galley, providing hot drinks and serving up cake for everyone.

Round 2

Sunday was a new day and a on to the next Round, although the wind was very similar in both strength (4 knots) and direction (SE) to the start of Saturday.  This time it was down to John Brierley as RO to find the best course to set for the reduced fleet of only 13 competitors. He managed to get the fleet underway on time after a short briefing and description of the course.  At least everyone started the first race unlike the start of Saturday.

Alex Cory started the day with a win as he did on Saturday, followed in race 2 by John Tushingham with Peter Baldwin taking Race 3, Tobias Laux Race 4 followed by John Race 5 before a short drinks break.  Meanwhile John Brierley was working hard to change the course and the fleet restarted after the break with a longer course as the breeze picked up and slowly swung more to the West.  John Tushingham again took Races 6 and 9 before Graham Elliott had his first wins in races 7 and 8. With the wind increasing even more, all sailors had changed down a rig by Race 10, which was won by Peter Baldwin, before an early break for lunch was taken.  The RO moved the course further round during the lunch break and the afternoon was spent with some excellent B Rig racing and a breeze that was almost straight down the lake, with the sun putting in an appearance to warm everyone up.

Peter Baldwin took wins in Races 11, 13 and 16, John Tushingham also had three wins in races 14, 15 and 17, with Graham Elliott the only one to spoil their successes with a win in Race 12.

John Tushingham easily took the overall win with only 25 points, followed by Graham Elliott in second with 41 points and Peter Baldwin one point behind in third.

Thanks must go to John Brierley, Bernie and Judith for running Sundays racing and Chris and Jocelyn for running the galley keeping us all topped up with welcome hot drinks and yet more cake.

Finally, congratulations to everyone in the fleet for sailing competitively yet fairly over the two days. We look forward to welcoming the RG65 fleet back next year.

2019 TT – Final Results

That’s it, the 2019 TT is done. Going into the last event the winner was already secured, 2nd was almost safe but 3rd and 4th were vulnerable to a few people who would be adding their 5th score to count towards the series.

In the end all of those 4 places remained unchanged but there was some significant movement in the places thereafter.

You can see the full results table HERE

Well done to John Tushingham for securing another series title with 494 points out of a possible 500.

There was a special award made to Neil Westbrook who was the only person to take part in every round of the 2019 TT. Well done Neil.

Thanks to all 50 participants and we look forward to seeing you all for the 2020 series

Two Islands – Final round of the 2019 TT series

15 Skippers took part in the final round of the 2019 TT at Two Islands on Saturday with a number of people needing good scores to get them to move up the overall standings.

Don’t let this picture bluff you about the conditions, it is from a year or two ago

The forecast was for light winds and rain, and that forecast proved to be very accurate. At least the wind direction was quite consistent, so everyone only needed to deal with the big wind shifts caused by the houses, trees, islands etc. Nicely challenging.

it is safe to say that Tobias Laux turned up intent to repeat his performance from the recent National Championships, but he met some stiff opposition from a number of others.

Another very notable appearance on the water was Clive Cockayne’s Sith sporting a single sail rig, which his own admission, was a shot in the dark. It proved to power the boat very well and I have no doubt that we will see it again after some minor adjustments to the fullness.

Sadly we do not have any pictures of the sailing as everyone was on the water for the single fleet racing, and our resident photographer was off at another event.

At the end of the day, John Tushingham took the event win after 20 races with 30 points, followed by Tobias on 44 points and Alex Cory on 52.

The full scoresheet sheet can be viewed HERE

Thank you to all of the Race Team for running the day. Great Job.

RG65 TT8 – Two Islands

12 October 2019

The final round of the 2019 RG65 UK TT takes place at Two Islands on 12 October and entries have stared to come in.

Two Islands on Furston Lake, Milton Keynes, is a regular stop on the RG65 tour and always delivers us a good and challenging event. 

The NOR has been published so please take a look and enter using the MYA entry system HERE

Entries to date as follows (as of 24/09/2019):

  1. Peter Baldwin – Pocket Rocket
  2. Wayne Stobbs – Scurry
  3. Terry Wright – Sith
  4. Clive Cockayne – Sith
  5. Noel Donaldson – Argon
  6. Roger Dunklin – Scurry
  7. Liz Tushingham – Scurry
  8. John Tushingham – Scurry
  9. Neil Westbrook – Pocket Rocket
  10. Alan Watkinson – Pocket Rocket
  11. Alex Cory – Minus10
  12. Mike Kemp – Sith
  13. Tobia Laux – Nuraghe
  14. John Brierley – Pocket Rocket (Provisional Entry)
  15. Phil Holliday – Electronica

RG65 UK Nationals Report

It seems to have been a long time coming but the RG65 Nationals weekend finally came and participants descended on Gosport for what was forecast to be a hot and sunny weekend.  Many took the opportunity to tune up on Friday in a good breeze with a number of boats launching for the very first time.

Saturday morning saw bright sunshine but a breeze of little more than 5 knots largely easterly but with sufficient shifts to keep race Officer Chris Durant on his toes and everyone de-camping to control from the South Bank where things kicked off with the skippers briefing.

Skippers and visitors were welcomed to Gosport especially our friends from overseas, Belgian Christel Cracco, Frenchman Gerard Chauvel, Swiss Tobi Laux and Martin Gray from the US.

After a short rejig of the course Heat 1 B Seeding got the event under way and local knowledge seemed key as Nigel Brown swept to victory followed by Tobi Laux and Alex Cory.  Heat 1A with John Tushingham not starting because of repair work, saw Phil Holliday home first from Peter Moore and Liz Tushingam.

Race 2 was to set something of the tone as with the breeze holding pace but continuing to shift, Graham Elliott showing a clean pair of heels to Tobi and by now the recovered John Tushingham.

With the breeze fighting to move more southerly Graham took Race 3 from Mark Dicks and Peter Moore (Nice new boat going well Peter!)

Alex, John T and Graham, finishing Race 4 in that order gave a master class in tactical close racing with Mark, Graham and John T ending the morning’s racing in Race 5

So to lunch with the points still reasonably close.  Graham from John T, Mark, Alex, Peter M and Christel Cracco having quietly sailed pretty consistently.  At this stage also worthy of note that there were 4 different designs in the top 6 boats.  The lunch break also brought the fleet back to the North Bank.

It had been decided that the early post lunch races would be sailed conventionally for the championship but would also be chosen for 3 races to count towards Bart’s Big Little Boat Bash.  Chris was trying to keep the courses as consistent as possible in the still 4 – 6 knot range but with the shifts seemingly moving inevitable more from the South.

During the course of Races 6 – 8, Martin Gray had clearly got the bit between his teeth after a couple of relative stinkers earlier taking first in Race 6 and 7 and second in Race 8 in his brand new Uno which he saw for the first time on Friday.  Not surprising then that Martin also became the fastest timed skipper over the 3 races.

A couple of general recalls in race 8 led to 30.3 U Flag start but the inevitable urge to avoid being flagged over the start line brought a 3 way tangle between John Burgoine to windward of Phil and Graham.  Try as hard as they did to disentangle themselves, it was well over half a minute before they were able to rejoin the race, and subsequently granted redress.

Tobi took Race 8 from Martin, Mark and John.  Race 9 saw Graham and Phil being promoted back up from B fleet to take second and third behind Tobi in A fleet.  The afternoon continued with a little more settled breeze direction but the strength gradually falling away.  Race 10 saw Graham win from Phil and Martin whilst Tobi took Race 11 from John, Martin, Clive Cokayne and Graham.  This 5th place for Graham would be his second discard and the end of day 1 after 11 races showed Graham with a 12 point cushion over Martin (31), John (33) and Tobi (38).

Sunday started with bright blue skies although the very light breezes were coming from everywhere, then falling away completely.  Ken led B fleet away getting a commanding lead only to hit a hole towards the final windward mark and watch helplessly as the fleet gradually hauled him in and overtook.  After the completion of the first heat, Chris called a postponement to try and get some consistency showing in the breeze, although it was to be indicative of the difficulties that would be faced throughout the day which would lead to several course changes.

Race 12 went to Tobi, his second consecutive win and his fourth overall.  Alex took Race 13 by the end of which Graham’s lead still looked reasonably secure around the 10 point cushion mark but there was less than 5 points covering 2nd to 4th Martin, John and Tobi.

Race 14 and virtually all thereafter suffered from really tricky shifts and swings in wind speed but it still looked as if Graham could hold on, especially since at that stage only 2 more races and the third discard would cut in.

Stinkers for Martin and John in Race 15 meant the top three were bunching ever closer, Tobi taking this one from Graham leaving Graham still clear but John and Tobi inseparable.

Race 16 sailed with the third discard coming into play at the end of it.  Mark took it from Tobi although a major swing in the scores was about to take place with Graham discarding his 8th place, John discarded the 11th from Race 15 but Tobi managed to get a Race 3 15th place out of the reckoning.  10 points now covered the leading 3 boats but they were forging further ahead of Martin, Alex, Mark and Christel.

With the breeze continuing to move more Southerly, the beats more directly across the lake became necessarily shorter.  Christel started to make a move winning Race 17 from Tobi and John but Graham’s 7th place was enough to change the overall lead.  Another win for Christel in race 18 closely followed by Tobi and John meant that it was getting closer than ever and as 3.45 approached, what would inevitably be the last race got under way.  Martin led this one home, from Christel, John and Graham but could Tobi hold on to his slender lead. 

The answer was that Tobi’s 7th place was good enough for the event win with net 50, Graham was 2nd with net 54.2 and John third with net 57.  Top 6 then all different designs.

Our thanks go to the Gosport club and members for putting on a great event and especially Chris Durant and his merry gang of helpers for keeping the racing ticking over.  Stephen Ridgway, Paul Edwards, Richard Filer, Alan Butt, Nick and Christine Ward, John O’Brien, Mike Carter, Mervyn Cook, Tony Millis, Chris Judd, Robert Hobbs, Chris Moore, Trevor Cartwright, Phil Hampson and Tim Rees for their lakeside help, Sue Brown for keeping the kitchen stocked with drinks and cakes, and last but not least, John Smith for organising the event from start to finish.  We look forward to our next visit to this great venue.

Our report finishes with 2 questions, to which the answer to both was, if you were able to be at the prize giving, emphatic No’s.

Q1 Has anyone, when considering the applause and acclaim from his fellow competitors, been a more popular winner.

Q2 If you saw Tobi after the presentation, has anyone been more pleased with their performance and result.  After 7 year’s trying he had at last won his first regatta in his home designed, home built and relatively old boat.  Just goes to show that persistent time on the water pays off.


Pictures thanks to Sue Brown from Catsails – many more pictures on Sue’s Flickr Pages

Rounds 5&6 of the TT on Ilkley Moor

Saturday’s forecast for Round 5 of the TT was at best light and variable.  Who says that the wind always blows in Yorkshire.  The briefing took place as normal with Derek Priestly arriving just in time to pick up the boat being loaned to him by Michael Parkington, and then the wait started.  If there was some wind, it was not suiting the course. PRO John Sharman would get the course reset, only for the wind to die or swing through massive angles.

Racing eventually took place with John Tushingham managing to come to terms with the variable conditions over 14 races taking him to the win with Derek 2nd and Peter Baldwin 3rd.  It was great to see a mix of Scurry, Scram, Pocket Rocket, Sith, Sledge and Manta in the top 10.

The forecast for day 2 and TT6 was much the same, possibly even more variable.

Derek hit the road running with a win in the 1st race before having his mainsheet snapped in race 2 by a rogue whirlwind.  In the end this setback did not not have too much of an impact as he went on to take the event win, with John Tushingham second and Wayne Stobbs 3rd.

Thanks must go to John Sharman and his team of merry helpers for keeping things going as best they could under testing conditions.

Thanks also go to Judith and Peter Baldwin for keeping the score sheets in order and last but not least, Liz Tushingham and the other ladies in the kitchen for keeping us fed an watered during the weekend.

Watermead TT – 9 June 2019

13 Skippers turned out for the 09:45 briefing from PRO Clive Bardell at Watermead for round 4 of the RG65 TT on Sunday 9 June.

Glassy spots on the lake were an indication that the forecast was correct, but in the end the wind filled nicely for the day, well, till the last of the 16 races on the day.  Indeed, 16 races were sailed before the 16:30 cutoff and it is safe to say that the day proved be good fun for all those competing.

Mrs Tushingham beat Mr Tushingham into 2nd place in race one which clearly upset him as he went on to score 12 wins on the day, tarnishing his overall score with a 2nd place after the 3 discards.

Phil Holliday managed a brace of wins on his way to 2nd overall with John Brierley taking 3rd place on the day.

Great to see the 9 different designs of Rg65 carrying both Swing and Conventional rigs mixing up the racing proving that there is no one design that is running away with all the honours.

Well done to the race team at Watermead for running the day so efficiently.

Birkenhead TT – 12 May 2019

A good entry of 19 boats of which there were 7 different designs competing for round 3 of the RG65 TT at Birkenhead, where we were met with blue skies and a decent breeze of 6 to 8 knots straight down the lake, with all skippers opting for their number 1 rigs to start the days sailing.

We sailed 4 races before a quick cup of tea/coffee (and a piece of cake) with no one skipper quick out of the blocks. Martin Roberts did take 2 out of the first 4 but also scored heavily in the other 2 sailing a borrowed Scram for the day.

Eight races were sailed before lunch and still no one skipper dominated with 5 different race winners and only a few points separating the top 5 boats it was obvious that consistency was going to win the day.

After lunch with the breeze building and skippers going down a rig at some point during the next four races, it was tight to the finish, finally after 17 races it was Martin Roberts who ground out the win on his maiden venture with an RG65 and gave the lad a smile from ear to ear.

We had two lady helms competing at this event, both enjoyed the champagne sailing with Liz Tushingham finishing in a well placed 7th and Susan Parkington 13th.

Thanks must go to  Judith Baldwin, Bernie, Neil and Chris Westbrook for their help and not forgetting John Brierley for supplying the scones and Bara brith to have with our tea.

Bournville TT – 6 April 2019

The RG65 circus came to Bournville and what a cracking do!

18 skippers from the length and breadth of the country, Keigthly, Birkenhead to Portsmouth and most places in between. To say Bournville was surprised and delighted was an understatement, there is a burgeoning fleet of RG’s growing there and after seeing how these cracking little boats perform it will grow again. So win win for all.

The wind was a nice top suit breeze from the far end of the lake allowed RO Peter Moore to set a course that used the lake fully in a two lap figure of eight configuration.

There was a good spread of the current designs, Scurry’s, Sledges, Syth’s and the odd Pocket Rocket a mix of carbon and glass hulls, most had swing rigs.

Using the long race format Peter got in 12 races during the day with not too much time out.

John Tushingham lead the way to come out the winner on the day, Clive Cockayne was second, Mark Dicks third and Liz Tushingham fourth.

The racing, as always, was tight throughout the fleet and it was excellent sailing across the board. It can all be wrapped up with that very apt but totally applicable “A jolly good time was had by all” and Bournville is looking forward to the circus coming back again next year

Eastbourne TT Report

Skippers were greeted with a forecast of 20 mile an hour winds gusting 30 from the west. 20 Helms had pre-entered but on the day 18 arrived starting at 10 o’clock, not before people enjoyed bacon BAP‘s and egg and bacon rolls to start the day.

Roger Clifford was RO along with the usual group of Eastbourne club members and wives to run the event for which the skippers thank them enormously.

Racing started at 10 o’clock and continued at slick pace as you can see from the number of races completed. It became a war of attrition as boat and electronic failures arrived regularly during the day.

Rig choice was between B and C initially some using A- but it very soon became apparent that B rig was the order of the day until later in the morning with the gusty wind becoming even stronger most opted for C rig.

After an excellent lunch break with hot soup French bread sausage rolls and hot dogs were the order of the day as we all warmed up.

Racing resumed at 1:45 and continued until 4 o’clock. During the afternoon the wind abated and we opted to go back to B rig which most people finished up with.  At some point the wind was even light enough for people to go back to an A minus momentarily but it soon became clear as it’s was just too much sail area.

23 Races completed and the top 3 on the day were within 10 points of each other.  Ken Binks took the win, closely followed by Alex Cory and Clive Cockayne

Full results are shown below and we almost achieved a fourth discard but the clock just beat us.

Thank you to Roger Clifford and all his team along with the catering wise made it a superb day to start the season. Thanks also to the Eastbourne club for once again providing a great day’s sailing.

Thanks to Dave Pickett for the use of his photos.  Move pictures available on his Flickr Page