Gary Richardson Travels From Australia to Win the British Soling National Championships.

 

 

The British Soling Championships were sailed at Lochaber Yacht Club, Fort William, on July 17th-18th.

 

The race track was on Loch Linnhe, which is a long arm of the sea. The salt water stretches from Oban into the mountains of the Scottish Hihglands, a bit like a fjord in Norway. This means that the wind is changed by the hills, like sailing on a lake in Europe; it also means that there is tide to think about. Loch Linnhe is deep more than 100 meters deep and so the windward/leeward course had to be laid near the shore. This meant that the beats and the runs were very one-sided.

 

It was also raining.

 

But British Soling sailors laugh at rain and nine boats started the first race. Gary Richardson, who now lives in Australia, won with his crew from Blackpool and Fleetwood Yacht Club, Stewart Lee and Karl Sloane. But Derek Priestley, Chairman of the British Soling Association, won the second race; then David Fish won races three and four with his son Daniel and Tim Seddon. The final race of the day was won by Paul Harkness, William Mitchele and Paul Davis. This crew is new to Soling sailing and one of them had travelled all the way from Lymington on the south coast.

 

Lochaber Yacht Club entertained the fleet on Saturday night, when the weather was charming, and the sailors assembled again on Sunday morning. It was raining. Gary and his team on GBR155 Buzz won both Sunday's races narrowly from David Fish's GBR144 Gerda to clinch the championship by one point. David Fish was not just runner-up; he also won the Master's Award, at the age of 70, and the President's Trophy for the fastest boat over twenty-five years old. Paul Harkness's team in GBR138 Dinnae Ken came third and Derek Priestley, sailing with son Shaun and Jo Buss, came fourth; Jo also won the trophy for first woman.

 

Iain Loudon

 

Place

Boat Name

Helm

Sail No

R1

R2

R3

R4

R5

R6

R7

Total

Net

1

Buzz

Gary Richardson

155

1

3

2

2

4

1

1

14

10

2

Gerda

David Fish

144

2

4

1

1

3

2

2

15

11

3

Dinnae Ken

Paul Harkness

138

4

2

3

3

1

4

3

20

16

4

Mr Crusty

Derek Priestly

170

3

1

10

4

7

5

4

34

24

5

Just Gonnie No

Andy McKenna

157

6

6

4

6

5

3

6

36

30

6

Romance

Iain Loudon

16+

9

5

7

5

2

7

5

40

31

7

McPs

Duncan MacPhee

156

8

7

8

8

6

6

7

50

42

8

Solaris

Hamish Loudon

161

5

8

5

10

10

10

10

58

48

9

Hussoling

Peter Watt

104

7

9

6

7

10

10

10

59

49