Over an action-packed weekend (9-10 April), teams from across Europe descended on the Royal Southern Yacht Club for an exciting ISAF Grade 4 match racing competition – the qualifying round and prelude to the main event, the ISAF Grade 2 Match Racing Final taking place 15-18 June.
After some really close racing the ‘home’ Royal Southern team, led by Annabel Vose (GBR) with Hannah Peters, Amy Prime, Rob Gullan and Piers Hugh-Smith, triumphed. Connor Miller (GBR) was second and Felix Jacobsen (Denmark) finished in third place.
After an early start on Saturday with a 0800 briefing on the new 2016 test rules of match racing, the teams from GBR x 2, Portugal, Germany and Denmark took to the water in the fleet of Club J/80 yachts with a fresh breeze blowing from the SW. Race management, led by Stuart Childerley, ran a full race day on the water with each team competing in 9 matches, before heading back to the Club for a well earned curry supper. There was a super buzz on Saturday evening with the match racers, the returning JOG Nab Tower racers and the Wine Tasting group showing great camaraderie.
Timo Sommer, from Nordseutscher Regatter Verein, an affiliated yacht club from Hamburg, said they had never done as many races in one day. He and his team train weekly in Hamburg and found it to be an amazing event and they will definitely come again. As Svenja Hünsch from his team said: “It was easy to get here and we have been made extremely welcome.”
Amy Prime, the trimmer from the Royal Southern team, commented: “…a perfect weekend of match racing organised by the Royal Southern, with many thanks to Stuart Childerley. It is always good to race against some international teams we haven’t faced before and we look forward to returning next year.” Annabel was delighted to try out the new kites from Doyle Sails in the big breeze and thanks go to Dick Long for preparing the fleet of J/80s for this intense weekend.
The RSrnYC racing event team pulled out all the stops to make sure the visitors from around the UK and Europe were welcomed. Indeed the Club is delighted to welcome Felix Jacobsen, from the Royal Denmark Yacht Club, as a new Academy member! He and his team enjoyed the occasion so much they have signed up as members.
Connor, from Loughborough University Sailing Team, commented on the amount of racing, and against good quality teams, with every team a challenge. Indeed Annabel and Connor had some of the closest match races on the water, as they kept their teams busy with constant match racing manoeuvres – always a treat for the observers.
Colin Hall, as the inspiration behind the creation of the Royal Southern Match Cup, thanked the competitors and the teams (both on the water and ashore) who made this such a fun and rewarding event, and presented the awards.