Xtremity Bosham Sailing Club Optimist Open - 17th September 2023
Published 14:53 on 19 Sep 2023
100 Optimists spread across the regatta fleet and main fleet arrived ready for a 4 race series making their way out in a blustery breeze gusting 23 knots in the harbour. Due to the easterly direction the main fleet course was set in the Gallon Reach so wasn't too far from base camp. Wind over tide made for a lively sail to the start with the young sailors testing the skills in the steep seas.
Race 1 got away on the second attempt and the fleet fought their way upwind. As they were arriving at the windward the sky darkened and it suddenly felt very unlike the end of summer. There were the odd flashes of lightning and the rumbles and the heavy rain started falling. In the race team on the committee boat we realised this was terminal for this race and it was swiftly abandoned and the sailors headed straight home where the tea hut became very popular!
With the weather system from the south west and the easterly wind, the rain and thunderstorm hung about for a bit but as it seemed to ease off the committee boat went out to see what it looked like on the race track. As time ticked on it was looking unlikely but with a bit of faith in the weather tracker the main fleet were called to launch. Not easy for the young sailors and parents to turn it around and get back out there when all was looking like it was over for the day so full credit for getting going again so swiftly.
Race 1 was a more comfortable 10 knots and with the tide starting to run with the wind the fleet split with some trying to get out of the tide but having less wind and others staying more central in the stronger breeze. The race was won convincingly by Finley Browne who had build a substantial lead by the windward mark and was never challenged. Nia Byrne followed in second, then Patrick de Salle with Pippa Shepherd fourth.
Race 2 started with sun starting to peak through the clouds and everyone started to dry out this is more like it! If only we had longer to do more races we all thought. After 2 laps of the windward leeward course and a few position changes the winner was Finn Ramus who sailed a stunning second windward leg from Pippa Shepherd (2nd), Wilbur Ward (3rd) and Tom Keegan (4th).
Unfortunately we did have to finish it there but it was great to end on a high note after a challenging day for all involved.
Xtremity kindly supported the event with some fantastic prizes and we are hugely grateful for that.
It was fantastic for Pippa Shepherd, a Bosham Sailing Club member, to receive the 1st place trophy and first Bosham boat trophy after a consistent 4,2 scoreline. Well done Pippa.
Results top 6
1st Pippa Shepherd
2nd Finley Browne
3rd Thomas Knight
4th Nia Byrne
5th Wilbur Ward
6th Finn Ramus
Last updated 14:53 on 19 September 2023