National Series 6 @ Carsington Water
Over the weekend of the 16th & 17th July I headed up to Carsington for the final event in the Topper National Series, NS 6. Last year this was my worst event by far so I was keen to improve. There was the added pressure that going into NS 6 I was 7th overall in the National Series but still counting a 42nd from NS1 at Rutland last year, so I knew that with a discard I had the potential to gain places.
I arrived early on Saturday morning after a good journey (thanks to the Zuurmmonds for taking me). The wind was considerably lighter than forecast and looked very similar in conditions to the previous year. This meant it was an ideal opportunity to put to bed any demons lingering from last year.
The first race was ok with a 13th however, the second race ended badly with a 32nd. With shifty conditions there were long breaks between races while the race officer tried to re-lay the course. I finished the day off with a mediocre 19th. This left me 28th overnight which was far from the start I was hoping for; I was getting a feeling of deja vu!
Despite the forecast, I awoke to much better winds on Sunday and I was keen to get some better results under my belt. My day started with a 5th, 6th and 6th which were much more like the results I was looking for; however, the next race didn’t go to plan with a 29th. I realised the key to success was to head left as the wind shifts were predominantly on the left and the pressure was also coming from the left. I put this knowledge to good use and got a third in the final race to finish 10th out of 149 overall. Not quite the result I was hoping for however, much better than last year. This also meant I moved up to 6th out of 244 overall in the Topper National Series, narrowly beating Hugo Burrows on count back. I also won the Youth National Series which I was happy about. Congratulations to fellow Team Rooster sailor Nick Wellborn for coming 5th.
Next stop Ballyholme for the Rooster Topper World Championships where I hope to finish in the top ten.