Tamesis Club

Saga Trophy Thursday 19th May

The forecast looked very light, but the wind filled in beautifully as the race started.  OOD Graham King set the upstream figure of eight course P.  Andy Harris and Matty Key in Crescendo shot away from the start, creating a big lead very quickly.  Matt PJ and Alastair Banks in National 18 Optimus Prime was soon in hot pursuit, but never able to catch them.  The wind did come and go a bit, but overall we had an evening of champagne sailing.  Tom and Ed Low made their first appearance in Tom’s Merlin and were third over the line.  Thanks to John Adams for producing the results after the handicaps were applied – see below.

Thanks to Graham King and Ian Ramage in the box, Paul and Sara Jamieson in the Patrol Boat.

The race was followed by drinks in the bar and meal provided by Alaphia assisted by Chloe in the kitchen and David and Florin and Alice in the bar.

leet

Boat

Class

SailNo

Club

HelmName

CrewName

PY

5 May 22

12 May 22

19 May 22

Total

Nett

Crescendo

MERLIN-ROCKET

607

Tamesis

Andrew Harris

Nim Harris

980

46.0 DNC

2.0

1.0

49.0

49.0

Piky II

LASER

188044

Tamesis

Jon Redding

1100

46.0 DNC

46.0 DNC

2.0

94.0

94.0

Optimus Prime

N18

421

Tamesis

Matthew Peregrine-Jones

Chris Martin

936

46.0 DNC

1.0

3.0

50.0

50.0

Keyser Sozer

MERLIN-ROCKET

3684

Tamesis

Tom Low

Ed Low

980

46.0 DNC

46.0 DNC

4.0

96.0

96.0

RTM

LASER

188044

Tamesis

Marcus Chavasse

1100

46.0 DNC

46.0 DNC

5.0

97.0

97.0

Seveneye

MERLIN-ROCKET

3520

Tamesis

Griff Tanner

Josie Tanner

980

1.0

46.0 DNC

6.0

53.0

53.0

Zephyr

N18

374

Tamesis

Henry Defries

Carolyne Vines

957

46.0 DNC

7.0

7.0

60.0

60.0

Cobblers

ALBACORE

6813

Tamesis

David Baker

Marcus Chavasse

1040

7.0

4.0

8.0

19.0

19.0

Andromeda

MERLIN-ROCKET

3259

Tamesis

Charlie Morgan

Alexey Anattskiy

980

4.0

5.0

9.0

18.0

18.0

Shy-Talk

LASER

120555

Tamesis

Jim Hamilton

1100

11.0 DNF

9.0

10.0

30.0

30.0

Flash

LASER

154695

Tamesis

Peter Impey

1100

11.0 DNF

11.0

11.0

33.0

33.0

Genevieve

N18

266

Tamesis

Charles Fox

Rob Blakebrough

1010

6.0

3.0

12.0

21.0

21.0

Hispanola

MERLIN-ROCKET

2895

Tamesis

Johannes Wagner

Lucius Wagner

980

46.0 DNC

46.0 DNC

13.0

105.0

105.0

White Sauce er er

MERLIN-ROCKET

3675

Tamesis

Rob Hatley

Izzy Hatley

980

5.0

46.0 DNC

14.0

65.0

65.0

 

Crew names are variable and may not reflect the last race.

National 18 Open Meeting, Blackwater Sailing Club, 14-15 May 2022

Report and photos supplied by Matt P-J

At the crack of dawn on Saturday morning the Optimus Prime crew of Matt PJ, Kaan Yargici and Peter Impey set off from Tammy once again to the River Blackwater in Essex for the first National 18 open meeting of the season, this year held jointly with the Fireball class.

Blackwater Sailing Club makes for an interesting venue to sail from because the estuary is only safely accessible to boats for approximately 2 hours either side of high water and if you are a bit slow getting back to shore then the river will have dried out to thick brown mud!!!

 

After rigging the boat and a welcome bacon sandwich for breakfast we were ready to go for 9.30am. However, despite the glorious sunshine and a ripping incoming tide there was not a breath of wind. So off we launched anyway and after a few supplementary strokes of the paddle we were off to the race course, all 3 National 18s and 20 Fireballs!

 

Fortunately the wind picked up and we had two good races off Osea Island in 5-10 knots of breeze; a perfect shakedown opportunity for a crew that had not raced together since August last year.  Even better, during the 2nd race the wind died and filled in again from the opposite direction so we had the unusual experience of flying our spinnaker on all 3 legs of the race course.  Then it was back to the club at full speed before the river ran dry for cold beers, FA Cup Final and barbecue.

Camping in the dinghy park overnight was very comfortable and convenient. However, when we emerged from our tents on Sunday morning it was damp, grey and very breezy. So off we trotted up the sea wall path towards Maldon to Wilkin & Son’s Team Rooms for a full Tiptree English breakfast with brown sauce and Little Scarlets strawberry jam – any of you real James Bond fan will know what I’m talking about. Now suitably charged, we launched into 20 knots of breeze with a gameplan to sail conservative, stay upright and not stick our mast in the Essex mud. That stood us well for the first three laps of race 3 but two quick gybes just before the final leeward mark almost put paid to that with a very violent death roll when the skipper’s lifejacket got caught up in the spinnaker poles. But recover we did – lost a place but avoided a dunking. And then the wind moderated for races 4 and 5; the last of which turned into a slow drifter against the tide on the very final leg.

Overall a great weekend’s racing on the East Coast that’s only ~90 minutes towing distance from Tammy. And remarkably, this was the first time I’ve ever received a prize for a third place finish in a three boat fleet – but who’s complaining!!! Second place went to Tammy old boys Ollie Houseman, Jeremy Vines and Harriet Sandall. And the winner was multiple catamaran champions Rupert White, Henry White and Matt Green – Rupert and Henry are son of Rob White and grandson of Reg White; founders of the legendary Brightlingsea catamaran, boat building and Olympic racing dynasty. Their business WhiteFormula is famed for previously building the Tornado and now builds the latest Ultra variant National 18 (pictured) along with many other seriously quick racing machines.

 

 

And just in case you were wondering and (unlike Jonathan Keys!) were too afraid to ask, there was no sign of the Essex Serpent all weekend!!!

 

 

April star performers

We plan to celebrate, in Club race reports, the success of the best “in-month” performers that we identify in both the Blue and White Series as we go through the summer.

April was a short but sweet start to the Summer Series, with only two series racing days, on the 3rd and 10th of the month, before other entertainments in the form of the Easter Egg Pursuit Handicap and the Firefly Open intervened.

Star performers of the month were as follows.

BLUE SERIES

Laser – Marcus Chavasse
Merlin Rocket – White Saucerer (Rob & Lucy Hatley)
National 18 – Antedote (Chris Pollard & Alistair Banks)

WHITE SERIES

Laser – Marcus Chavasse
Merlin – Avenger (Ken Duffell & Joe Woods)
N18 – Antedote (Chris Pollard & Alistair Banks)
Congratulations to all concerned, and keep up the good work.

Winter Series Prizegiving 2022

Although racing was abbreviated on Sunday 15th May by a Skiff Club event, the day’s delights were extended to include prizegiving for the 2021/2022 Winter Series.

Laser

This Winter’s Laser racing was dominated by a mixture of newer and younger faces.

The Frostbite Mug for Winter Points was awarded to Henry Medcalf, with Matt Valentine and Chris Taggart second and third respectively.

Henry Medcalf receiving the Frostbite Mug for Laser Winter Points

Laser Winter Handicap went to Matt Valentine.

Matt Valentine receiving the Laser Winter Handicap prize

National 18

Burt’s Mug, the prize for the National 18 Winter Series, went to Henry DeFries and Carolyne Vines in Zephyr, with Chris Pollard & Alistair Banks (Antedote) second, and Charles Fox & Robert Blakeborough (Genevieve) third.

Henry DeFries (c) and Carolyne Vines (l) receive Burt’s Mug from Commodore Chris Pollard (r)

Enterprise

The Enterprise Winter Traveller Series, a well-attended series at the start of 2022, was won by Ed Mayley of Minima YC. His trophy was collected by Rob Mayley.

The Enterprise Winter Traveller Series trophy collected by Rob Mayley on behalf of Ed Mayley.

Merlin Rocket

Andy Harris and Matty Key (Point Break) cleaned up the Merlin Rocket prizes, winning the Black Hen trophy for the Travellers Series as well as the Black Mark Winter Points prize. In both cases Richard Harris & Emma McDonald (Passing Cloud) were second, and Joe McLaughlin & Sean Roberts (Lady Anne) were third.

Andy Harris and Matty Key, winners of the Merlin Rocket Winter Points Trophy

The clean-up accidentally included the Geoff Cooper Memorial Trophy, awarded to the winner of the final race of the Winter Series. This will be re-assigned to the correct winners, Richard Harris & Emma McDonald in Passing Cloud, at the earliest opportunity.

The Winter Handicap prize was won by Peter Impey & crew in War Horse (absent sailing at Blackwater SC), with Joe McLaughlin & Sean Roberts second in Lady Anne, and Ken Duffell & Joe Woods third in Avenger.

 

March Blue Mini-Series

Pennants and celebratory bottles were also awarded to the winners of the mini-series in March which saw the successful trial of the new Blue Series racing.

The winners were:

LASER

  1. Matty Key
  2. John Edmondson
  3. Jim Hamilton
Matty Key, winner of the March Blue mini-series (Laser)

NATIONAL 18

  1. Henry DeFries & Carolyne Vines (Zephyr)
  2. Antedote (Chris Pollard & Alistair Banks)
  3. Orion (Mal Warner & Beatrice Russ)

MERLIN ROCKET

  1. Charlie Morgan & Tim Ginn (Andromeda)
  2. Matt Peregrine-Jones & Lyra Wade (Masquerade)
  3. Peter Mason & Richard Mason (Bambusa)

 

Prizes were organised “Master of the Trophies” Henry DeFries and awarded by the Commodore, Chris Pollard. Thanks are due to both.

Summer Series 5: 15th May 2022

The Summer Series is fully underway, and nothing can stop the Tammy racers now. Not even a river full of skiffs could do more than delay the fun.

With the Skiff Club event ruling out a 10:30 start, Blue Series racing was dropped for the day, and all eyes turned to the slightly delayed White Series, slightly delayed to an 11:50 start sequence.

Nine Merlin Rockets got things going in a fairly light Easterly. OOD Tim Medcalf had set a Canbury-Lensbury course with a teasing dogleg being dropped virtually onto the start line. As it turned out, all it took was the first beat up to Canbury to start to sort the fleet. Passing Cloud (Richard Harris & Emma McDonald) established a small but meaningful early lead over a tightly chasing pack.

Passing Cloud managed to keep the momentum up, coming in clear of Crescendo (Andy Harris & Matty Key) and Bambusa (Peter & Richard Mason), with the rest of the fleet finding things increasingly tough as the wind evaporated. Things got so bad that three of the Merlins couldn’t even complete the course, a rare sight.

The Laser fleet was also struggling, albeit for different reasons. The head of the seven-strong fleet was cut off when two of the pacesetters coasted past the dogleg. The opportunity was snapped up by Roz Warwick-Haller, claiming her first win of the Summer Series. Second place was Alexey Anatskiy, showing the benefits of regular racing with his ever-improving results. John Edmondson tidied up third place as the remainder of the fleet started to wonder if they were ever going to make it back to shore.

Last off, Tammy watchers had a treat: the rare sight of four National 18s out for a spin, together with a single-handed Enterprise.

Antedote (Chris Pollard & Alistair Banks) led the fleet home on the water, but when “Tamesis Yardstick” handicaps were applied, Genevieve (Charles Fox & Robert Blakeborough) nosed in front, followed by Antedote and Zephyr (Henry DeFries & Carolyne Vines).

Peter Bide managed the not inconsiderable task in the fading breeze of single-handedly bringing his Enterprise home for the points.

A Thursday Evening Saga 12.5.22

The wind looked very promising on Thursday evening as we arrived.  Bit gusty but would give us something to think about.  A mix of Merlins, Lasers, an Albacore and National 18s started upstream in glorious sunshine on our usual figure of eight course.

Andy and Nim Harris in Merlin Rocket Crescendo shot away from the line and were only challenged and eventually overtaken by Matt Jones and Chris Martin in National 18′ Optimus Prime.

The other boats had many changes in fortune as the wind came and went, dropping many into holes not experienced by others.  The racing was close throughout.

 

Thanks go to Peter and Nicky Johnson in the box, Steve Lucas and Johannes and Josefine Wagner in the Patrol Boat for organising the race.

The race was followed by a tasty supper of beef burger, chips and loads of trimmings followed by a selection of ice creams.  Many thanks to Alaphia, Chloe for  for cooking the supper and Florian for running the bar.

Thanks to Steve Vines for the photos.

Results below – thanks to John Adams.

et

Boat

Class

SailNo

Club

HelmName

CrewName

PY

5 May 22

12 May 22

Total

Nett

Optimus Prime

N18

421

Tamesis

Matthew Peregrine-Jones

Chris Martin

936

43.0 DNC

1.0

44.0

44.0

Crescendo

MERLIN-ROCKET

607

Tamesis

Andrew Harris

Nim Harris

980

43.0 DNC

2.0

45.0

45.0

Genevieve

N18

266

Tamesis

Charles Fox

Rob Blakebrough

1010

6.0

3.0

9.0

9.0

Cobblers

ALBACORE

6813

Tamesis

David Baker

Marcus Chavasse

1040

7.0

4.0

11.0

11.0

Andromeda

MERLIN-ROCKET

3259

Tamesis

Charlie Morgan

Alexey Anattskiy

980

4.0

5.0

9.0

9.0

Samanda

MERLIN-ROCKET

596

Tamesis

Tim Medcalf

Bethan Roberts

980

2.0

6.0

8.0

8.0

Zephyr

N18

374

Tamesis

Henry Defries

Carolyne Vines

957

43.0 DNC

7.0

50.0

50.0

Saltarello

MERLIN-ROCKET

1602

Tamesis

John Adams

Rob Hatley

980

43.0 DNC

8.0

51.0

51.0

Shy-Talk

LASER

120555

Tamesis

Jim Hamilton

1100

11.0 DNF

9.0

20.0

20.0

Barramundi

LASER

182636

Tamesis

Brendon Hills

1100

43.0 DNC

10.0

53.0

53.0

Flash

LASER

154695

Tamesis

Peter Impey

1100

11.0 DNF

11.0

22.0

22.0

Omega

MERLIN-ROCKET

1605

Tamesis

Rupert Fletcher

Jim Green

980

43.0 DNC

43.0 DNC

86.0

86.0

Oozlam

MERLIN-ROCKET

1773

Tamesis

Geoff Bayliss

Tom Bayliss

980

43.0 DNC

43.0 DNC

86.0

86.0

White Sauce er er

MERLIN-ROCKET

3675

Tamesis

Rob Hatley

Izzy Hatley

980

5.0

43.0 DNC

48.0

48.0

Seveneye

MERLIN-ROCKET

3520

Tamesis

Griff Tanner

Josie Tanner

980

1.0

43.0 DNC

44.0

44.0

Tamesis Club sailors in the chocolates at Broadwater SC Laser Super Sprints

Having competed last year, Henry Medcalf was delighted to be invited back to Broadwater SC to take part in the club’s excellent Laser Super Sprint format on 30 April.  A series of six 20-25 minute races around a tight course which put an emphasis on starting and accuracy of manoeuvres.

The host club was also kind enough to offer your correspondent the loan of a club Laser which was much appreciated.

Conditions were light, patchy and shifty with the whole event run in glorious sunshine.  Ideal for river-raised sailors!

However, there was enough wind to get around and the 15 strong fleet enjoyed some really close racing with each mark being a case of nip and tuck.

Henry took two firsts in the afternoon races and finished second overall, which was much appreciated by his grandparents who had been spectating from the bank – no pressure!  Henry also won First Junior.  In case you are wondering, his Dad came in fifth having enjoyed a few father-son duels, and also collected some of Mr Cadbury’s products.

The Laser Super Sprints is an excellent format and everyone felt that they had taken a lot from the experience.  Thank you to Broadwater SC for being such warm and generous hosts, Brian Deacon for providing the pictures, and Stewart Colley for the loan of his Laser combi trailer.

‘Ton up’ for Tamesis Club Training Team

After an inevitable hiatus due to the pandemic, the club launched a new RYA training timetable at the beginning of the 2022 which features a combination of weekend training for adult beginners and week-long kids camps during the school holidays.

We are delighted that Tom Bull, who was the leader of the camps last summer, agreed to become the club’s Chief Instructor and also that Matty Key has joined the ranks of our RYA-qualified Dinghy Instructors.  Matty is a great example of home-grown talent and we are actively looking to develop more youngsters along the same path this year.

The club has supported the new program, and also the club’s general sailing infrastructure which is available to all members, by making investments in refurbishing existing boats with the Laser 2000s and all Toppers having been updated and new sails purchased.  Also, an additional, modern Wayfarer has been acquired which means that we now have two boat that are ideal for training and also for families and social sailors.

The adult courses are run on a single weekend, with trainees spending full days at the club; this has the added benefit that they can see the club in action during Junior Sailing, social sailing, and Sunday morning racing.  The training is for RYA Level 1 and Level 2 courses and enable trainees to reach the standard where they can sail without an instructor in a club boat.  It is great that so many are now joining the club – please make them welcome and extend a helping hand if needed.

 

The kids camps will follow the same format as in previous years.  As an innovation, we have trialled a camp during the Easter break which proved to be very successful and we look forward to welcoming many of those children to one of the summer camps too.  While the focus of the weeks is on having fun, the children also earn on of the RYA Stages certificates.

The camps have had a very loyal following since they started in 2019 and we now have many youngsters who have gained Stage 4 or are close to it.  Another innovation for 2022 is the addition of an Advanced Week camp where we will be looking at some of the RYAs Advanced Modules and pushing this more experienced group to really develop their skills.

Looking at the current level of bookings, the club will issue more than 100 RYA certificates this year.  There are still a few places available on weekend courses and the summer camps (mainly the weeks of 22 and 29 August) so don’t delay if you would like to enrol for yourself or on behalf of someone else (non-members are welcome).

Tim Medcalf is coordinating the training programs and can be contacted via the contact form on the RYA Training page, by phone, or via Whatsapp.

 

 

Sunny start to the Saga series

A good mix of classes set off in the light north easterly for the first of the Saga Trophy Thursday evening races.  The course was set in front of the clubhouse, which is just as well as the wind died shortly after 8pm.  OOD Stewart Colley wisely finished leading Merlin Seveneye sailed by Griff and Josie Tanner who led from the outset.  Everyone finished bar two of the Lasers who determinedly tried to reach the top mark for the last time, but were unable to as the wind had dropped completely.

The sunset was golden – a memorable start to the season.

Thanks to OOD Stewart Colley assisted in the box by Alastair Banks, Patrol boat driver and crew Florian Krueger and Beatrice Russ.  Alaphia treated us to macaroni cheese with smoked ham followed by trifle.  Thanks to David and special thanks to Yann in the bar (his last shift before he goes to Uni), Florin and Sophie in the kitchen assisting Alaphia.

Results below – thanks to John Adams for raising them so quickly.

Thursday Evening Saga 2022

Results are provisional as of 8th May 2022

Overall

Sailed: 1, Discards: 0, To count: 1, Rating system: PY, Entries: 40, Scoring system: Appendix A

Fleet

Boat

Class

SailNo

Club

HelmName

CrewName

PY

5 May 22

Total

Nett

 

Seveneye

MERLIN-ROCKET

3520

Tamesis

Griff Tanner

Josie Tanner

980

1.0

1.0

1.0

 

Samanda

MERLIN-ROCKET

596

Tamesis

Tim Medcalf

Lyra Wade

980

2.0

2.0

2.0

 

Avenger

MERLIN-ROCKET

1004

Tamesis

Ken Duffell

Matthew Valentine

980

3.0

3.0

3.0

 

Andromeda

MERLIN-ROCKET

3259

Tamesis

Charlie Morgan

Alexey Anattskiy

980

4.0

4.0

4.0

 

White Sauce er er

MERLIN-ROCKET

3675

Tamesis

Rob Hatley

Izzy Hatley

980

5.0

5.0

5.0

 

Genevieve

N18

266

Tamesis

Charles Fox

Rob Blakebrough

1010

6.0

6.0

6.0

 

Cobblers

ALBACORE

6813

Tamesis

David Baker

Peter Johnson

1040

7.0

7.0

7.0

 

Antedote

N18

348

Tamesis

Chris Pollard

Caroline Stilwell

957

8.0

8.0

8.0

 

Phew

LASER

198571

Tamesis

Chris Taggart

 

1100

9.0

9.0

9.0

 

 

LASER

159498

Tamesis

Peter Impey

 

1100

11.0 DNF

11.0

11.0

 

Shy-Talk

LASER

120555

Tamesis

Jim Hamilton

 

1100

11.0 DNF

11.0

11.0

Ranelagh SC Downriver Race 7 May 2022

A highlight of the Merlin Rocket and general river racing calendar, the RSC Downriver Race doesn’t disappoint.

Tamesis Club was represented by Peter and Alison Cooper in MR1939 ‘Warhorse’ and Tim and Ed Medcalf in MR596 ‘Samanda’, the latter boat making a return to her birthplace of 67 years ago on the Putney Embankment.

As ever, RSC extended an incredibly warm welcome to the 20 crews with outstanding bacon rolls, tea and coffee providing a very welcome mid-morning energy boost before the anticipated 12.15 departure.

The fleet was diverse, as you would expect from a development class, with sail numbers ranging from 1 to 3815.  There were also a number of long-established crews who had come to test their mettle on the Tideway.

The midday race briefing confirmed a 10 minute gun would be sounded at 12.35 with the club employing its own 10-4-1 sequence.  Guidance was also given about when spinnakers could be set and the rules of the road regarding the bridges.

The tide still ebbing, crews were conscious of the need to do some work to stay above the line.  At the gun, the fleet turned downstream with the majority opting to head to the right hand bank to take advantage of the strongest  stream.

After a decidedly mid-fleet start, and finding themselves boxed in, Team Samanda gybed clear to windward and found enough breeze to take the lead shortly after the sweep under the Putney railway bridge.  Helm advised crew to enjoy the experience while it lasted!

These turned out to be wise words as the fleet gathered itself and a lead group broke free.  The wind then picked up to a meaningful level and there was some spirited beating around the bend which then opened back to a reach and more beating on the approach to the turn mark at Battersea Park.

Despite there being only one mark, many boats were caught out by the fact that the buoy had been laid in approx a fathom and half of water but on a 30ft rope.  Many, your correspondent and also the crew of Warhorse having to make multiple attempts at a clean rounding.  Which was frustrating.

Spinnakers were set by those who had them on the way back.  Warhorse using the kite to great effect to start picking off boats and working back up through the fleet.

Spinnakerless, Samanda relied on the insight of her junior crew who called the gybes which saw her remain in contention at the rear of the front group.

The final act was a beat back up to the finish line in a fresher breeze.  After nearly an hour and 45 minutes of racing, the line was tantalisingly close but wasn’t making it easy for crews to finish.  Fittingly, three vintage Holt Martines slugged it out at this point, right in front of the building where they were built in the mid-50s.

Klaxon blasts from the shore signalled the end of what had been a superb outing.  Samanda’s crew came in seventh and Warhorse 14th, both having had their moments to savour.

RSC surpassed themselves with a fantastic lunch which all competitors enjoyed together sitting along tables in the clubhouse – a very convivial end to the day.

Congratulations to Rob and Hatty Cage who won the event, again schooling the rest of the fleet about how to sail on the river.  Peter Impey was awarded the 2021 DeMay prize for Most Original Boat and took the opportunity to promote the Tamesis Club Merlin Rocket weekend on 21 and 22 May.

Ed Medcalf was quietly rather satisfied to win First Junior having suddenly re-focused his full crewing powers when he saw his opposition bearing down in the last quarter of the race.

RSC will be running their Upriver Race/Merlin Open on 23 October and hope for another strong turnout.  At a time when the Tideway, the spiritual home of the Merlin Rocket, is under threat as a sporting venue it would be excellent to have another strong attendance from Tamesis Club to help create a bumper fleet.  Put the date in your diary!

Thanks to the RSC team for a fantastic day and providing the photographs, and also to Craftinsure for sponsoring the generous prize fund.