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News Reports and Stories - 2018

If you are a participant in any news-worthy event please submit a brief report, preferably with a few pictures, to:

News reports from 2017 and earlier can be seen on the Archive page.

Weekend at Plas Menai, October 26-28th

Sail 4 Gold Regatta

Report from Mike Hulands

Saturday 15th September provided excellent conditions for the 2018 Sail4Gold challenge. Winds were fresh with some interesting gusts up to 19 knots (F5).

Many thanks are due to Gary Stuart for taking on Race Officer Duties and giving us four good races.

Thanks also to all who helped out, Allan for example, giving up sailing his Solo to take on Safety duties.

A total of 11 boats took to the water;

Yours truly was in an Access crewing for Mark (nobody told us we picked the slow boat – my excuse) so we had a good view of goings on.

Initially Christine and Robert took a Bahia out for a spin but shortly after the start of race one decided to inspect the centreboard with a total inversion following a gust. Although wet, with Christine ending up under the boat for a short while, both were OK and managed to right the boat. They decided to switch to an Access for the rest of the day.

Also in race one, Matt decided that Dave’s boat needed a thorough clean which he achieved with two impressive capsizes. Matt now knows what is meant by “the Solo can be a little twitchy when gybing in gusts”!

In Race three Roger decided that the seat in the Venture was getting a little uncomfortable and heeling ‘appreciably’ in a gust got out of the boat – or was that fell out of the boat! Although his legs tangled in the spinnaker sheets he was fine, if wet. It was an ‘interesting’ sight to see the Venture sailing along (quite well in fact) with Roger hanging on to the side! Rescue decided that it was probably best to recover Roger rather than complete the series with him in the water.

With vastly different boat speeds, gusty conditions and a fairly short course there was some ‘close sailing’. Some entrants having to do turns for hitting things including the Committee Boat. Some, of course, failed to ‘do turns’....

Despite the punishing PY handicap and washing the boat twice – Congratulations to Matt – Overall Third.

Gaining Second overall congratulations to Barbara and Tim.

Congratulations to our overall winners – Katie and Richard.

Results Summary

RankClassHelmCrewPY RatingTotalNett
1stAccess 303 DHKatieRichard Elliot166011.04.0
2ndAccess 303 DHBarbara HoggTim Settle16609.06.0
3rdSoloMatt Alden115020.011.0
4thAccess 303 DHSam RavenscroftPriscilla Davies166022.013.0
5thK1Gabriel Leeming106825.013.0
6thAccess 303 DHChristineRobert166027.015.0
7thWayfarerPhil KennyCath Kenny110223.016.0
8thAccess 303 DHMark SidwellMike Hulands166026.017.0
9thTopaz UnoMeg Elliot125131.019.0
10thRS VentureChris DabbsRoger Bastow109233.023.0
11thMartin 16Mick BenfordMike Garlick118842.030.0

See the full Sailwave Results Tables.

Summer Challenge

Report from Mike Hulands

So the final results are now released....

This year saw 28 races in the Sailability Summer Challenge with a vast range of sailing conditions. Some days saw virtually no winds in over 30C temperatures to F6 winds in the rain.

Credit is due though to all involved, as all 28 races were run.

Sam, entering the series for the first time, took part in 26 of the 28 races, more than any other competitor and achieved four 1st, four 2nd and five 3rd places. Many congratulations due then for Sam who secured third overall.

Achieving five 1st, four 2nd and five 3rd positions, Roger sailing the Single Handed Access, gained Second Overall – Many Congratulations to Roger.

Overall win and the trophy goes to Barbara and Tim, gaining five 1st, four 2nd and five 3rd. Many Congratulations to Barbara and Tim.


The table below and the Sailwave Results Table treat discards in different ways, and so may present different overall placings as the series progresses.

This year there are 28 races of which 14 will count and 14 will be discarded.

This table uses all scores until more than 14 races have been held. After that the best 14 scores from races sailed so far will be counted and the other scores discarded.

The Sailwave table progressively discards scores in proportion to the number of races held. So for example after 12 races only 6 scores count with 6 discarded, after 20 races 10 count with 10 discarded and so on.

After the last race both tables count the best 14 scores, so the overall placings will then agree.

See the full Sailwave Results Tables.

Sailability Volunteer Gold awards

Congratulations to Robert McIntyre, Chris Bignell and Diana Sharvill on achieving their Gold Awards for their contribution to our Sailability operation.

Pictured are Robert and Chris receiving the certificates from Roy Child, chairman.

RYA inspection & change of Principal

Sailability had a successful RYA Inspection on the 9th July & after 3 years' service Geoff Warren handed over his role as Principal to Chris Bignell.

Please join us in wishing Chris the best of luck in his new role.

Charity Lunch in aid of Northampton Sailability raises £820

On Saturday 30th June the Charitable Enterprise Committee of St Peter's Church, Weston Favell held a charity lunch, the proceeds of which were donated to Northampton Sailability.

The committee organises several of these events throughout the year to raise funds for a wide variety of charities.

The lunch was fully sold out with 80 people attending who enjoyed a good 2-course meal provided by volunteers followed by a presentation on the work of Sailability by Roy and Priscilla.

The connection between St Peter's Church and Sailability was made through Peter Hodgkinson who has sailed with Geoff Portas on Fridays for several years.

The generous donation of £820 arose from ticket sales, raffle tickets and other donations

We are very grateful to Rosemary Pestell and her team of helpers for their efforts and to all the diners for their generosity.

Northampton Sailability hosts Hansa TT round 3

Report by Mike Hulands.

Flat “mill pond” yet sunny conditions welcomed the 20 entrants for the Hansa TT at Northampton Sailability on 19th May.

Whilst winds remained very light throughout the day, the enthusiasm of the entrants and quick course changes to follow the fickle breezes by the race officers allowed a full programme of 4 races to be held.

Thanks are due to all the Northampton Sailability Volunteers who worked tirelessly to make the day a success despite the very light winds.

And a very big thank you to Mike and his many helpers for making it a great day - Ed

Show Overall Results Table
PosSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4Pts
Hansa 2.3 Class
1st954Alastair Carr Rutland(1)1113
2nd2813Harry Kennington Frensham Pond(2)2226
Hansa 303 two person Class
1st2294Natalia HillmanAlan HillmanNew Forest(1)1113
2nd2748Steve KitsonRoy MorrisonNew Forest(3)2237
3rd2314Phillip HallDavid AnkersChesil2(4)428
4th867Sam RavenscroftHenry ShawNorthampton(5)53412
5th2743Roy ChildPriscilla DaviesNorthampton(6)35513
6th2034Mark SidwellsPeter WindattNorthampton4(6)6616
Hansa 303 one person Class
1st2464Jessica Campbell South West Scotland 111(2)3
2nd2524Mike Everett Frensham Pond22(3)15
3rd2554Katie Apse Frensham Pond(3)3238
Hansa Liberty Class
1st2557Paul Phillps Frensham Pond(6)1124
2nd2561Tessa Watkiss Frensham Pond13(4)15
3rd33 Pat Crowley Rutland226(8)10
4th2600Diane Faulks Rutland5(7)2310
5th2402David Durston Whitefriars3(4)3410
6th2599Chris Emmet Rutland485(9)17
7th3068Val Millward Rutland76(9)518
8th1066Christine Sprite Rutland(8)58619
9th2723Simon Harle Rutland9(10)7723
Hide Results Table

A few photos from the day by Robert McIntyre

See Robert's full gallery for more photos of the day's events.

Nene Flyer Naming.

Report by Roy Child

The naming ceremony of our new RS Venture keelboat took place on Sat 28th April. Guests from Nene Valley Rotary Club and Wooden Spoon Charity who raised the money for us to purchase the boat, along with club members attended. Originally meant as a launch ceremony, miserable weather unfortunately foreshortened the event.

Champagne was duly used by Alastair Rowton, President of Nene Valley Rotary, to christen the boat ‘Nene Flyer’ with a short speech at the same time presenting us a cheque for £10,000. Roy gave a similarly short speech thanking both organisations for their generosity.

Everyone swiftly retired to the clubhouse to enjoy the nibbles and drinks in a more convivial atmosphere.

Again many thanks to Nene Valley Rotary Club and the Wooden Spoon Charity for their support.

In Memory of Brian Thake - Northampton Sailability

It is with great sorrow that I heard of the passing of Brian Thake. His energy and vision in starting Northampton Sailability as a retirement project leaves us all owing him a great deal.

Brian had been married to Daphne for over sixty years when she sadly passed away a few years ago. They have a son and daughter and several grandchildren. Unfortunately Brian recently developed Altzheimers and moved to Reading to be with his son.

Brian was a businessman in Leicester and has sailed all his life and had been a member of Northampton Sailing Club for many years. He raced very competitively all year with his Flying Fifteen. He was also a keen member of a Sub-aqua Diving Club at Stoney Cove in Leicestershire. He dived in many exotic locations around the world and had many a tale to tell about his adventures.

As a member of Northampton Sailing Club, Brian took over the organising of trips for groups of disabled people and the use of two modified boats that had been donated to the Club. He realised that there were many other people who would benefit from having the opportunity to sail at Pitsford and decided to gather together a group of sailors to offer regular sailing for people with disabilities.

He initially bought a Drascome Longboat around 1994 to take groups out for occasional trips on Pitsford Water, he named it ‘Serendipity’ and is much loved still as part of our fleet.

I was initiated into his group of enthusiasts after being made disabled in 1994 and turned up at Northampton Sailing Club looking for sailing. Brian met me outside the clubhouse, he took me by the arm into a meeting setting up Northampton Sailability saying ‘ You're just who we need!’. Typical of Brian! Thereby hangs a tale!

You only need to browse the archives on this website to get an idea of how his vision grew and grew. He will be greatly missed by us all.

Roy Child, Chairman - Northampton Sailability