This is what I can recall from the event so the actual sailing may be a bit vague since I was at the back most of the weekend struggling with bits and pieces.
The weekend dawned with a windy day to get rigged up, with only 1 local, Ben Skull, the travellers were dominant. With 3 sailors Seasalter SC was best represented by Martin Searle, Kevin Dutch and David Turnbull, 2 from Queen Mary in the form of Gordon Goldstone and George Stephen, followed by Erling Holmberg from Shanklin and Ian Collyer from Holywell. Nick Dewhirst would join the gang on Sunday. Most opted for Sport rig given that the Sport nationals were only a couple of weeks away, with Nick, Ben, Gordon and Ian opting for the Una rig. Martin had to borrow a spare sport rig from Kevin for the weekend (thanks!) having orginally planned a Una rig outing.
The event was to be held together with both the Shearwaters and the Shadow. These latter two fleets were to add quite a lot to the shenanigans on the water with lots of boats meeting one another. This wasn't helped by the 15's sailing a different course to the other two!
Thus the first race of 3 back to back got under way in a gusty 4-5, Kevin shot into the lead and was never to reliniquish it with Gordon coming second and Ben 3rd. Many of the sportsters were still finding their feet and yours truly (Martin S.) had also forgotten his trapeeze harness and then found that his mainsheet wouldn't jam either so there was a bit of struggling here and there.
Basically this started a pattern from looking at the results with Mr Dutch winning and then various other folks taking the minor places for example Erling took second in race 2 with George Stephen 3rd, whereas in race 3 it was new boy Ben Skull in 2nd and Gordon taking 3rd. At the back of the fleet Martin and Ian were fighting over last place. David Turnbull had a jib sheet fixing give way from the trampoline track and he retired race 2 and Martin retired race 3 when quite frankly I got a little miffed at everything (girlfriend problems mostly!) including a whole line of starboard tack shearwaters whilst approaching the windward mark on port and called it a day! All in all the only sailors with any sort of consistency were Kevin, Ben and Gordon.
After the sailing we had a nice BBQ and settled down to the usual chatting and drinking, Nick turned up and showed us all his new acquistion a second hand model of a NewCat that he felt could be 15'd easily. Looks like it will be an interesting sail and apparently Kevin has it now.
Day 2 dawned and boy what a contrast to day 1, it was sunny, then rainy with hail and then sunny but all with not a lot of wind! Race 1 of 2 got off to a SLOOOWWWW start and everyone sailed around what I thought was the right way round the course but apparently I was sailing the course backwards because after an age of battling wind against tide and current I arrived at what I thought was the last mark (having rounded the others 'correctly') only to find it was actually the first mark, I was trying to round it the wrong way apparently. So I then proceeded to go back round the course I had just sailed. Nick proved a light wind wizard and carded a first denying Mr Dutch (2nd) of a clean sweep and Ben Skull carded another 3rd. Race 2 was cancelled when the wind died completely and most of the fleet ended up being towed back to a rather interesting landing at the Herne Bay ramp, lots of helpers to whack wheels under the boat and push it up before the next customer arrives, gosh only knows what its like with an on-shore wind and big sea.
Thus Kevin Dutch won the first TT of the season, with Ben Skull 2nd and Gordon Goldstone 3rd.
Full Series Results available here