Phew, that was an intense 10 days. firstly sorry i haven't been providing daily update, unfortunately the locations i have been in haven't provided very good internet access but i will do my best sum up what has been going on. The last 10 days has been made up of 3 keel boat events that i have raced in. The Sunsail final series, the student yachting nationals and RORC's Easter regatta.

My focus regatta for Easter was the student yachting nationals, and after finishing 2nd last year i was desperate to go one better. Very generously this year Plymouth University provided the team with some funding to attend sunsail's final race weekend as a training regatta for the main event. The regatta was held on the weekend of the 27th/28th with the nationals starting on the 29th. The team arrived the Friday evening before to collect the boat and get it ready for racing. because we were one crew short, Kelvin Matthews who i sail alot with last year stepped in to offer his advice and knowledge. We had a great weekends racing against 25 other sunsail boats, made up of alot of the universities we would be racing during the nationals. A fantastic effort from the team meant we won the training regatta which put us in good spirits of the main event.

The student yachting nationals is the most contested event on the student racing circut, 35 teams were doing the 4 day series. This year was no exception, the racing was harder than ever and there was alot of teams who could potentially win the event. Between myself and the team we did a great job, and sailed a very consistent regatta. We never featured outside the top 3 overall and finished the event in 3rd. A result which i was initially disanointed with but looking back on can be very proud of. I have 2 years left on my course so next year might be my year!

Following the student nationals, i was straight over to the isle of wight for RORC's Easter challenge regatta. This is a shake down regatta for all the keel boats based around the solent. I was racing on a J80 and representing the British Keel boat Academy. Other boats on the water included the BKA's very own TP52 and the newly built Origin TP52 helmed by Ben Anslie. This was an IRC raced event, so everything was done on a handicap system. On the Friday the wind was up and the J80's rating works well. we have a great time doing some non stop planning down winds. check out the picture below. on the second and third days the wind was much lighter and our rating didn't stack up quite so much and we struggled to get good results against the better rated boats. Overall we finished 5th, which is a good result for an asymmetric J80. Im looking forward to having a go on the TP52's though, they were very impressive to watch.

So a pretty busy 10 days, a little rest now and then my J80 Euros campaign starts to wind up!

AuthorTom Phipps