Traveller, Marconi Sailing Club 17-18th April 2004

The first 2004 Dart 15 TT event was held at Marconi Sailing Club in Essex on 17/18 April with a fleet of nineteen boats. The Saturday brought unusually mild and pleasant weather with a light breeze. The first race saw Bob Carter and Peter Richardson hard on the heels of George Carter who was sailing sprint mode. Bob kept close enough to George to take 1st place by only a few seconds on handicap, with Peter Richardson a close 3rd and Phillip Howden in 4th.

The breeze had strengthened for the second race and brought some interesting gusts / lulls as it came offshore – particularly when the fleet sailed inshore to escape the strong Blackwater tide. George Carter, Bob Carter, Gordon Goldstone, Nick Dewhirst and Philip Howden led the fleet hotly pursued by Peter Richardson and Andy Chidwick. Unfortunately, Bob Carter was caught by one of the unexpected gusts and capsized, although he still managed to pull back to a respectable 8th place. The winds also caught out Bob Rowntree, Nick Pavitt and Patrick Ellum who also capsized during the course of the race.

Bob Carter

Sunday morning brought entirely different weather conditions with force 6 - 8 winds. A reduced fleet of 9 boats set off on the traditional and popular figure of eight race around Osea and Northey Islands. Early starts meant four boats had to go back over the start line, but the fleet had pulled closer together again as it shot past the end of Osea Island in the strong breeze. The race was closely fought all the way round with Tim Dieu de Bellefontaine finally taking 1st place, followed by Bob Carter, George Carter, Andy Chidwick and Nick Dewhirst.

The strong winds held for the afternoon race - an exhilarating round the cans with an interesting downwind leg which claimed Eammon Browne as a pitchpole victim and a few close shaves for some of the other competitors! Andy Chidwick also capsized on the last lap which regrettably cost him 4th place. George Carter took 1st place followed by Tim Dieu de Bellefontaine, Nick Dewhirst, Bob Carter and Gordon Goldstone.

George Carter

The varied wind conditions made for some great sailing and some very interesting final results – but the clear overall winner of the event was George Carter.

Overall Results
1st George Carter Grafham
2nd Bob Carter Grafham
3rd Nick Dewhirst Whitstable
4th Tim Dieu de Bellefontaine Marconi
5th Gordon Goldstone Queen Mary
6th Andy Chidwick Marconi

For the full results, see the series results tables.

Jenny Ball Marconi SC