Two members of EDMBC were due to compete in this Marblehead National Event for the Mermaid Trophy held at Guildford's Abbey Meads Lake. Unfortunately Mark Robinson had some other commitments on the day and couldn't attend.
It was hot and sunny with a very light wind, mostly from a Northerly direction. A very long windward, leeward course was laid with the furthest mark some 300 metres away from the bank which made it very difficult to see when to turn and if there was an overlap or not.
As the weather was very light I decided to use my Stark No 69. I was up against some of the best Marblehead sailors in the country. Five were using Grunges which is without doubt the best boat on the market at the moment but at a cost of around 4.5K for the complete package I thought my couple of hundred quid Stark was at a huge disadvantage.
The racing was very competitive and quite aggressive. I also more than my share of a problem with weed.
Initially I was bullied out at the starts being forced on a number of occasions to abort or forced as windward boat onto the start buoy. This was a learning exercise for me and in the light conditions a bad start was impossible to make up. So I continued to keep to the ideal bias but waited just behind as the fleet cleared the line. This worked and I got some creditable 4th and 5th place finishes.
I came 8th overall from a fleet of 12. Very satisfied with that. Just goes to show £ for fun value isn't necessary using the most expensive equipment.
1st Peter Stollery Guildford UP 19
2nd Rob Vice Guildford GRUNGE 39
3rd Darin Ballington Manor Park GRUNGE 45
4th Tony Edwards Yeoville GRUNGE 50
5th Phil Holliday Datchet GRUNGE 51
6th Roger Stollery Guildford UP 70
7th Rob Wilson Lincoln STARKERS 73
8th Michael Thomas Eastleigh STARK 69
9th Peter Jackson Hollowell UP 92
10th Peter Kirby RSW PRIME NUMBER 116
11th John Cleave Ryde GRUNGE 137
12th Geoffrey Bremner Datchet F5 161
Winner of Best Improver's prize &
Vic Cooney Trophy - Tony Edwards