Survival Conditions at Shustoke
Wild conditions reigned with white horses normally only found on much bigger waters. Ten boats had decided to brave it and, with the wind blowing down the lake, the action all took place within easy viewing of the clubhouse. There were some really spectacular two and three sail planes, not to mention the capsizes!
The first race got underway in a F5 and it was Chris & Ann Biglin that rounded first with Tim Vick close on their heels. At the second mark the Biglins were blown flat which forced Vick to bear off hard and nose dived to join the Biglins in the water. This left Stuart Hydon and daughter Hannah to take the lead closely pursued by Dave Lynch and Nick Hydon, sailing with a combined fly weight of 16 stone. Two laps later saw Richard Bennett and Nicola Booth take the lead, with Hydon then also losing second to Steve and Nicky Cumley following a late capsize.
The wind notched up another force just before the start and with some competitors withdrawing and others (including the Cumleys) the wrong way up,the start line wasn’t exactly crowded. Rachel Rhodes had by now relieved young Hannah in the front of the Hydon boat and they lead from start to finish. After two capsizes from Bennett, Hydon and Rhodes’ lead lengthened to over half a lap, with Bennett second, Vick third and Darren & Ryan Padro fourth.
With all to play for, Hydon and Rhodes established an early lead from the Biglins followed by Bennett and Cumley. On the first lap Bennett capsized at one of the Gybe marks and subsequently retired. Both Hydon and Biglin opened up their lead on Cumley, until a Gybe on the following lap which left both in the water. The Cumleys had decided on a more conservative 2 sail approach and came through shortly before Hydon/Rhodes had recovered. Their lead was however short lived after a near capsized while gybing and line honours went to Hydon and Rhodes, with the Cumleys second and the Biglins third.
The overall results were:
1. Stuart Hydon and Rachel Rhodes Shustoke SC
2. Richard Bennett and Nicola Booth Staunton Harold SC
3. Steve and Nicola Cumley Barnt Green
Stuart Hydon - 05th October 2009