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South Caernarvonshire Yacht Club, Abersoch: 30th and 1st June

South Caernarvonshire Yacht Club, Abersoch hosted the 2008 Snipe national championship over the weekend 30th May 1st June. Seventeen boats travelled mainly from Budworth SC, Cheshire but also from Maldon YC Essex, Blue Circle SC Kent, Shoreham SC Sussex and Rutland SC Leicestershire

On day one, the OOD had no option but to postpone the planned 1pm start due to the lack of wind. However, the light breeze eventually filled in which enabled two races to be held. The windward leeward courses provided for tactical upwind and downwind sailing. Iain and Richard Marshall sailed the downwind legs superbly to win both races convincingly. In race 1 Budworth junior Will Williams crewed by his dad Stephen raced extremely well to take second place just ahead of Alan Williams and Liz Crouch. In the 2nd race, second went to Alan and Liz, with Mark Antonelli and Ryan Penny in 3rd.

On Saturday the racing was once again postponed due to lack of wind and a thick mist. The breeze eventually filled, the mist lifted and the boats were released from the beach. With the race underway Ian Gregory and Cecile Munoz took a commanding lead followed closely by Eric Paalman and Tom Ditchburn. A large windshift at the end of the first leeward leg meant that the OOD had to replace the windward mark. Alan and Liz took advantage of the shift along with Iain and Richard, taking 1st and 2nd followed by Phil and Emma Hackney. However, Ian Gregory and Neil Martin lodged a protest requesting redress as procedures were not exactly followed when the new windward mark was laid. This was granted to both boats.

Race 4 was started in a building breeze. This time the fleet were too eager to get off and there was a general recall. For the second start the race officer put up the black flag to get the fleet away. Unfortunately for Will Williams he was OCS in the last minute before the gun. Alan and Liz lead the race from start to finish with Neil Martin and Karen Winfield in 2nd and Ian Knight and Graham Hoy in 3rd.

The last race of the day got off with a clean start with the wind getting up to a force 3 / 4. Once again line honours went to Alan and Liz who battled throughout the race with Iain and Richard who took 2nd from Neil and Karen.

On Sunday 2 races were planned with a 10am start and no race to start after 1pm. Going into the last day the points throughout the fleet were extremely close so there was everything to race for. At the top only 1.25 points separated the top 2 boats. The weather wasn’t looking good with no wind at all. After sitting on the beach for a couple of hours a very light breeze started to fill across the bay. Eventually at 12.30 the fleet launched for the last race, which got off at 12.50 just within the time limit. There was a steady wind at the start of the race and Neil and Karen got off to a good start, closely followed by the father and daughter pairings of Nick and Hannah McGonigle and Brian and Anne Gregory.

In the final downwind leg Alan and Liz were in 3rd slightly ahead of Iain and Richard. They matched them gybe for gybe as Iain and Richard tried to gain an advantage, thus allowing Nick and Hannah to establish their 2nd place. Finishing in 3rd place gave Alan and Liz the championship over Iain and Richard.

The competition throughout the fleet was very close across all 6 races. Often there was only a matter of seconds between the boats on the finishing line. The race officer had a tough time especially waiting for the wind to fill on all 3 days!

Rank Sail No Club Helm Name Crew Name Nett
1st GBR30316 Blue Circle SC Alan Williams Liz Crouch 7.25
2nd GBR29501 Maldon YC Iain Marshall Richard Marshall 9.50
3rd GBR30227 Budworth SC Neil Martin karen Winfield 10.75
4th GBR28451 Blue Circle SC Ian Gregory Cécile Munoz 26.00
5th GBR30226 Budworth SC Mark Antonelli Ryan Penny 28.00
6th GBR30315 Blue Circle SC Brian Gregory Anne Gregory 30.00
7th GBR29164 Shoreham SC Ian Knight Graham Hoy 31.00
8th GBR30617 Budworth SC Phil Hackney Emma Hackney 33.00
9th GBR29538 Budworth SC Eric Paalman Tom Ditchburn 33.00
10th GBR29303 Rutland SC Nick McGonigle Hannah McGonigle 37.00
11th GBR29794 Budworth SC Grant Edwards Geoff Edwards 52.00
12th GBR26169 Budworth SC Roger Barnes Pauline Penny 53.00
13th GBR27098 Budworth SC John Love Miles Buckley 58.00
14th GBR21746 Budworth SC Will Williams Stephen Williams 61.00
15th GBR29677 Budworth SC Kathryn Alexander Susan Robertson 66.00
16th GBR29676 Budworth SC David Alexander Frances Alexander 69.00
17th GBR29538 Budworth SC Roger Gardner Paul Gilmore 84.00

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