2012 UK Nationals
at Stone SC
Article: Rick Perkins & Dan Vincent
Photos: Tania Samus http://www.photoskiff.com/
The first day of the Musto Skiff Nationals
dawned with chilly conditions in a usually gloriously
Winter kit which has not yet quite been
put away for the summer got dusted off for one last
42 boats entered this early event as a
prelude to the World Championships which is to be hosted
by WPNSA; the worlds looks like it will be an epic event
with 89 entries on the board so a 100 boat fleet looks
The weather was 8 - 14 knots with a healthy
tide setting the fleet towards the windward mark.
The first race got away on time with Andy
Rice nailing the first beat to lead round the windward
mark with a good lead chased by the bunch including
Chris Webber, Richard Stenhouse and Bruce Keen.
Rice was eventually overhauled and the
race was won by 2010 National Champion Bruce Keen, followed
by former Endeavour Champion Steve Tylcote followed
by Andy Rice.
Race 2 got off again under an individual
recall; Keen was first to show chased hard by the pack
... Stenhouse took a bit too much of a risk on the down
wind leg ending up aground on a lee shore gathering
mud on his foils for his troubles.
At the finish line it was Keen again followed
by Chris Webber and Grand Master Nigel Wallbank.
The final race again got off first time
with the fleet starting to get to grips with the challenging
Jamie Hilton kicked into top gear to take
the win from early leader Kit Stenhouse followed by
Looking at the overalls at the end of
the first day Keen has a health buffer already with
a 6 point lead from Chris Webber who is 10 points ahead
of Grand Master Nigel Wallbank.
It looks like it will be a high scoring
event with only 4 boats logging 3 top 10 results.
Stone Sailing Club team did a great job
of turning the race round and the courses were adjusted
well to keep them square as the wind tracked round.
After the racing the sports physio Heather
Morton had plenty of customers with sailors looking
to keep themselves in top condition.
This evening the fleet are looking forward
to enjoying a curry meal followed by the commodores
reception and a GBR sailors AGM.
The fleet will tonight have sections nominated
Gold, Silver & Bronze meaning everyone has something
to race for ...
Ear We Go!
Hilton sailed a solid day living mostly in the top ten,
but lost his left lobe in a freak accident that has
left him looking like a pirate and suffering from a
series of ear-related puns.
Ian Martin was the perpetrator of the
heinous crime and will hereafter be known to the fleet
only as ‘Tyson’ while Jamie is condemned to be forever
Back to the racing and Sten showed some of the form
that has won him approximately 46 National and World
In the four races,
conducted in testing Force 3 to 4, Sten scored 1,1,2,4
to close the gap on previous National Champ, Bruce Keen
who scored 3,11,1,1. Further down the table Y&Y
journo Andy Rice, scored 4 top ten results with 6,3,8,7.
The other 39 sailors enjoyed hard beats and full-on
runs with a varied level of success.
Silver fleet is being led by Dylan Noble
who is competing in his first Nationals, while Mick
Keates who has sailed in more events than anyone can
remember is leading the Bronze fleet.
Sailors are full of praise for the
PRO Neil Fulcher and his team, who set some cracking
courses and turned the races round quickly and efficiently.
Finally there is unprecedented demand for the Sport
Masseuse to treat and soothe aching bodies in preparation
for tomorrow and the final day.
Finally the sun showed it's face for the
final day of the Musto Skiff Nationals at Stone SC.
With 7 races on the board and 2 to go the final 2 races
were set as a show down between two former national
champions; Bruce Keen & Richard Stenhouse to trailed
the former by 7 points.
Further down the fleet there were many private battles
to be settled for glory in the Silver & Bronze fleets
and the age category prizes.
The breeze had shifted towards the south placing the
course across the river meaning shorter courses with
more laps and a shifty gusty breeze.
The first race of the day got off with Ben Shooling
leading who was later overhauled by Rick Perkins who
was again later overtaken by Richard Pelly who took
the win from Perkins followed by Dan Vincent in 3rd.
Further back Stenhouse was 7th & Keen 8th.
At this stage it wasn't all over but the fat lady was
warming up the vocal cords ...
The last race Stenhouse & Keen fought it out at
the front with Stenhouse taking the win followed by
Keen giving Keen the championships by 7 points. 3rd
in race 9 was Jamie "Evander" Hilton.
The fleet had a great time at Stone and would like to
express great thanks to Stone Sailing Club who ran a
fantastic event both on and off the water; the weather
was pretty nippy at times and the sailors much appreciate
the crews who manned the commitee boat and RIBs in the
The racing was slick with no general recalls and minimal
gaps between races allowing sailors to enjoy some time
off the water too ... great hospitality at Stone SC.
The focus for the class now shifts to the Worlds which
are to be hosted in Weymouth at the end of June; with
90 entries on the board and a few weeks to go to the
entry deadline will this be the first Musto Skiff regatta
with 100 boats on the start line?
1. Bruce Keen
2. Richard Stenhouse (first Master)
3. Chris Webber
4. Jamie "Evander" Hilton
5. Dan Vincent
6. Andy Rice
7. Steve Tylecote
8. Ben Schooling
9. Alex "Mini" Cooper (first Youth)
10. Rick Perkins
First Grandmaster 14. Nigel Walbank
Silver Fleet: Dylan Noble
Bronze Fleet: Mick Keats
here for Full Results >>>