Musto Skiff

2012 Dutch Open Championships Bookmark and Share

Report by Tris Williams
Photos Tris Williams, Graeme Oliver and Karel Walters

What an event it was! Two days of coaching, followed by the inaugural Dutch Open Championships. It’s no wonder we needed a good sleep afterwards.

The 6th to 9th of September 2012 saw the second Masterclass training camp kindly supported by the MUSTO Skiff Class Association. Class ‘veteran’ Graeme Oliver travelled to Bruinisse harbour in the south of Holland to lead a focused two days of training for 7 enthusiastic sailors.

Light winds on Thursday meant that there was an opportunity to have a thorough shore-drill and rig tune session. We could really break down the sequence of each manoeuvre and find where things were going wrong and why. Late afternoon the breeze came through at a nice 10-12knots, allowing us to get out for a few hours and try to apply some of these new techniques.

As is so often the case when un-learning old habits while trying to learn new ones, things got a little tricky and some peoples’ heads were a little too ‘in the boat’, leading to a highly questionable port-starboard incident at the top mark. Seems I didn’t have quite as much room as I thought...

Friday dawned with the sun shining and a forecast for the breeze to hold. We were up early and on the water for a nice long session for starting and racing drills. This is where the smaller group really excelled – a short start line and brilliant conditions meant that everyone pushed themselves very hard, ending with hotly contested start lines and some impressive demonstrations of low speed control.

The wind held for the afternoon session and so Graeme set us off on a drill to test the tactics. Two windward marks meant we needed to look around and choose the best course for the breeze. A nice counterpoint to the focus of the previous sessions and good preparation for the racing the next few days. Also, a good way for the coach to tire out the competition before the real racing started.

Saturday & Sunday saw the inaugural Open Dutch MUSTO Skiff Championships, held in conjunction with the Open Dutch Skiff Trophy. The MUSTO’s and RS700’s shared a racecourse with the rest of the fleet divided into RS500’s, low handicap & high handicap. Unfortunately the beautiful breeze of Friday didn’t last through Saturday and so two races were finally set off with a mass start for all boats. Fickle winds and many various boats (and skills) meant that it was imperative to keep clear air and momentum. Paul Dijkstra (076) sailed the smartest and took both bullets of the day.

Sunday had slightly better breeze, though still patchy, shifty and fickle. A lot of waiting near the start boat for the wind to fill in long enough to set a course and execute a full start sequence was the name of the game. Ultimately there were three successful races for the day, with three different race winners; Paul Dijkstra, Tristan Williams (371) and Graeme Oliver (376). The final two proving neither weight, nor age is a barrier to success in this class...

Overall win went to Paul with relative newcomer Jelmer Kuipers (175) second and Tristan Williams rounding out the top three. Also good to see was the noticeable improvement of the fleet, firstly due to the time and energy spent by those competing in the world titles at Weymouth, then again over the course of the weekend.

No Zeilno Naam Punten 1 2 3 4 5
1 NED 76 Paul Dijkstra, MUSTOSkiff 6,0 1 1 1 3 (6)
2 NED 175 Jelmer Kuipers, MUSTOSkiff 11,0 3 3 3 (6) 2
3 AUS 371 Tristan Williams, MUSTOSkiff 16,0 7 (dns) 5 1 3
4 GBR 421 Elaine Turner, MUSTOSkiff 16,0 4 (7) 4 4 4
5 BEL 788 Laurent Declercq, RS700 17,0 2 5 (6) 5 5
6 GBR 376 Graham Oliver, MUSTOHandicap 20,0 (dns) dns 2 2 1
7 NED 229 Huud Ouwehand, MUSTOSkiff 22,0 5 2 (11) 7 8
8 BEL 733 Gueuning Nicolaas, RS700 29,0 6 4 8 11 (dns)
9 GBR 171 Stewart Patience, MUSTOSkiff 35,0 9 8 (10) 8 10
10 NED 269 Erik Loeff, MUSTOSkiff 36,0 8 6 7 (dns) dns
11 NED 950 Koen Sibbel, RS700 38,0 10 9 (12) 10 9
12 GBR 879 Jan Tymowski, RS700 40,0 (dns) dns 9 9 7
13 NED 109 Roelof Kuipers, MUSTOSkiff 60,0 (dns) dns dns dns dns
13 NED 422 Sijbrand Jongejans, MUSTOSkiff 60,0 (dns) dns dns dns dns

Cheers, Tris Williams
Musto Skiff 371

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