Event Report - Allen GP2 at WPNSA
Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy hosted an impressive 71 boats for the UK 29er Allen Grand Prix 2.
For the qualifying day on Saturday the fleet was divided into blue and yellow fleet. A breezy 18kts and sunshine greeted the fleet, perfect weather for October in the UK.
834 Ethan Gerrell/Tom Barnes, and 2811 Ollie Evans/Ben Hutton-Penman won race one in each of their flights, starting off their regattas strongly. The first girls were 2340 Sophie Dennis/Emma Wells who sailed well to come 5 th . Ollie and Ben enjoyed the strong winds and powered to a second bullet in race two, with 3066 Aled Llewellyn-Jones and Ben Bradley taking 1 st in yellow flight. First girls in race two were 2849 Monique Vennis-Ozanne/Jess Jobson with a 4 th . The wind dropped slightly by race three to around 16kts, but the big gusts and steep chop (especially at the gate) remained. 222 Ben Mueller/Freddie Lonsdale won their blue race by a very comfortable margin, but the front of the fleet was much closer in yellow, with 2982 Tom Storey/Ben Willett eventually coming out on top. 2234 Emily Mueller/Louis Johnson (emergency super-sub) won yellow’s race four. Ben and Freddie won again in blue, making them overnight leaders, but all was to play for on Sunday, with just 5 points separating the top 9 boats. Well done to all the new sailors for coping with Saturday’s gusty winds and thanks to the safety fleet for their help when boats needed it.
On Sunday, the fleet was split into Gold and Silver for a final series of four races. A shifty, gusty, northerly breeze of 10 knots, with different conditions throughout the course made for close and exciting racing, with lots of lead changes both within and between the races. Emily and Louis made the most of their good start off the pin to win race 5 in gold, 2966 Leo Wilkinson/Sam Jones won race 6, and 2982 Tom and Ben took the bullet in race 7. All was to play for in race 8, with the top 4 boats separated by just 2 points. Leo and Sam won the race, closely followed by 2905 Elodie Edwards/Ewan Wilson, meaning they finished the regatta on equal points, with Leo and Sam taking 1 st overall after a very consistent series, and Elodie and Ewan 2 nd and 1 st mixed team after lots of 2nds throughout the event. Emily and Louis finished 3 rd , Aled and Ben 4 th and 2327 Charlie Gran/Emily Covell rounded off the top 5. First girls were Sophie and Emma in 9 th , followed by Monique and Jess in 11 th and 2753 Sian Talbot/Maddie Bristow in 14 th . Well done to the top 3 juniors: 2742 Ed Coady/Sebastian Shilling, 2545 Jamie Gatehouse/Oscar Morgan-Harris and one point behind them, 1356 James Clarke/Noah Fitzgerald.
In silver, standout performance of the day was 2139 Nick Evans/Sam Webb with 1,3,1,1 to win overall. 1490 Tasmyn/Tyler Green placed 2 nd , and Ben Tuttle/Will Batch 3 rd . After not sailing on day one, 401 Melissa Hempel/Rachael Jenkins won silver’s second race and 2477 Raulf Berry/Caitlin Williams also had a strong day. Well done to 4 th placed and 1 st ladies team 2493 Ella Lightbody/Felicity Brellisford, who sailed extremely well in their second ever 29er event.
Many thanks to WPNSA for hosting us and keeping everything Covid-safe, PRO David Campbell- James and our class sponsor Allen.
Check out www.digitalsailing.co.uk for some great photos.
By Emily Mueller