With a poor forecast, the PRO Chris Hobbins had his mark boats out on the course early resulting in an inevitable AP for an hour. It was another 2 visits before he summoned the Fleet out to the course for a start around 2pm. The conditions were wet but wind was down to around 18 to 20 knots with a bit of chop.
The fleet were away on the first time of asking but a number were OCS at the pin end. Best start of the race was Peter and Stephen Boyle but this was to back and haunt them. Aside from the OCS there was a bit of pile up with Sam Watson having born away back over the line to see the hiked out crew of another boat sitting in when they capsized over and were run over after been joined together for a few seconds.
Shane MacCarthy & Andy Thompson again looked good out right but there was company in the form of Alan Blay & David Johnston as well as Fergus Barnham, Andrew Clewer and Ian Willis another former championship winner. With a good chop and breeze just lightening a little Shane MacCarthy again produced some good speed to go past Fergus Barnham with Alan & David taking a well deserved 3rd place. Peter and Stephen came home across the line in 6th only to discover they were among 4 OCS’d boats. What was impressive was that in a long race in tough conditions Peter kept his concentration after the good start and a 6th would have been a superb result. Speaking later he was upbeat realising what a good effort it had been. The other OCS casualties included another 2 front runner Nick Deveraux and former champion Mike Senior. The event was hotting up with 2 Irish in top 5.
Race 3 got away in a dropping breeze with the fleet learning their lesson and all clear. Alan & David showed immediately and led at the weather mark ahead of Fergus Barnham, Shane MacCarthy with Mike Senior not too far off the pace.
The leaders opened up a lead on the rest of the fleet with Alan & David then opening a decent gap on Fergus and Shane. The guys kept their hold to the finish to take their 3rd UK Nationals race win following 2 wins at last years event in Brixham. Shane MacCarthy edged away from Fergus Barnham to take 2nd with a fast finishing Mike Senior taking 3rd right on the finish line ahead of Fergus.
After 3 races, Shane MacCarthy & Andy Thompson lead on 4pts. Alan & David lie 3rd on 9pts, just a single point behind Fergus Barnham & Ellie Deveraux. With wind forecast to be lighter over the following days the Championship is hotting up.
Apologies for the photo quality but good camera had to left ashore.
[whohit]-2016 GP14 UK Nats D2-[/whohit]