Race Reports & Results

Race Reports and Results:

Click HERE for 2017 Series results

Click HERE for 2015 Series Results.

Click HERE for 2014 Series Results.

Click HERE for 2013 Series Results.

Click HERE for 2011-2012 Series Results.

Click HERE for 2010-2011 Series Results.

Click HERE for 2009-2010 Series Results.


Sea Champs – Thorpe Bay 2017

Well Saturday just picked right up from where we left off in 2016. Wow it was windy. Robbie leaned upo in the big seas. Sunday was a perfect sailing day, sun, wind, (just enough) flat water for Bryan. Simon and Paul split the wins but Robbie id enough to re take his Sea Championship title leaving Simon ruing the fact he arranged for Robbie to borrow Penny’s boat for the weekend!

1st 404 Robbie Claridge – Royal Lymington YC
2nd 406 Paul White – Draycote SC
3rd 420 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC

Results:Lightning Sea Champs-ThorpeBay 2017


Northern Area Championships – Denholme SC 2017

The welcome of this club knows no equal as we all became Yorkshire men for the weekend.
The wind came from behind the mountain and made for light challenging winds all weekend. A new name will be on the trophy as Penny Yarwood got her act together by race 3 and battled to the line against Caroline to win on the last leg of the last race.

1st 404 Penny Yarwood – Up River YC
2nd 413 Caroline Key – West Oxfordshire SC
3rd 420 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC

Results:Lightning Northern Champs-Denholme 2017
Report:


Manor Park SC 2017

The sun came out and Summer arrived for the class annual trip to the Midlands and the hospitality was perfect as always. * boats were trained on Saturday by Robbie and 11 boats took part in the Sunday racing. Paul and Spike have obviously been taking fast pills thought the winter and showed it is all to play for this year keeping Simon at bay in all races.
1st 406 Paul White – Draycote SC
2nd 294 – Spike Daniels – Oxford SC
3rd 420 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC

Results: Lightning368_ManorPark_2017
Report: Lightning 368 Manor Park SC Open 2017


Rum & Mince Pies WOSC 2016

The season finale is now gone and Simon resumed his winning form to take both races in an absolute drifter ahead of Robbie Claridge with Spike Daniels pipping Penny Yarwood for 3rd on count back.

With the Travellers complete it is no surprise it was won by Simon Hopkins sailing his new Claridge boat. Sailing 8 events Simon won 6 of them only beaten by Richard Palmer (returning for Cookham in a borrowed boat) and Penny in the light winds of Hunts SC. He also completed a clean sweep of the Championships picking up the Nationals, Inlands and Sea Champs, so is the man to beat in 2017!

Bryan Westley completed his dominance of the Silver fleet to retain his Travellers Solver Fleet trophy and after a podium earlier in the year won his first open meeting win at Broxborne SC. Congratulations to Bryan and welcome to the Gold fleet!

1st 420 Simon Hopkins Up River YC
2nd 421 Robbie Claridge – Royal Lymington YC
3rd 294 Spike Daniels – Oxford SC

Results – R&MP 2016

Report-R&MP WOSC 2016


Broxbourne SC 2016

Maybe it was the wind but only 3 visitors joined the lone home boat for this battle of the Silver Fleet. Only two races were managed and the finishing order in both was the same. Bryan Westley winning his first open meeting. He can only loose the Silver Fleet travelers now if Jason wins all three races at the Rum and Mince Pies……….
PS Spooky how all boats ended in 7?

1st 407 Bryan Westley – Aldridge SC
2nd 267 Gary Tompkins – Hunts SC
3rd 417 Jason Gallagher – Denholme SC
4th 317 Richard Mortlock – Broxbourne SC


Hunts SC 2016

Five visitors joined the six home boats to make an good turnout of 11 boats even though the wind did not get the memo. In the light winds it was a battle between Penny and Caroline, but Penny had the edge and with 3 straight wins retained the title from last year. Finally Simon’s run is broken!

1st 404 Penny Yarwood – Up River YC
2nd 413 Caroline Key – WOSC
3rd 420 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC

Results – Hunts SC 2016

Report – To Follow


National Champs – Northampton SC 2016

The wind had threatened to blow all weekend and it did not disappoint. Saturday was wet and Windy and Sunday was Sunny and Windy. Don’t be fooled by the results, every race had multiple leaders and was nip and tuck to the end. However overall Simon Hopkins emerged Champion with a very impressive scoreline. Bryan Westley kept it upright all weekend and won the Silver Fleet in style. Next year he is looking forward to sailing in the Gold Fleet.

1st 420 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC
2nd 406 Paul White – Draycote SC
3rd 421 John Claridge – R. Lymington YC

1st Lady – 404 Penny Yarwood – Up River YC
1st Silver Fleet – 407 Bryan Westley – Aldridge SC

Lightning 368 National Championships – Northampton Sailing Club 2016

Report – to follow


Inland Champs – Oxford SC 2016

The fleet that arrived at Oxford for the Inlands was small but competitive and with a steady 12knot wind all day had some champagne sailing! Although Simon kept his 100% record intact for 2016 he was pushed all the way by local Spike Daniels and Penny was always in close attendance to pick up the pieces.

1st 420 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC
2nd 294 Spike Daniels – Oxford SC
3rd 404 Penny Yarwood – Up River YC

Report -Inland Champs – Oxford 2016

Results – Inlands 2016


Southern Champs – Lymington YC 2016

5 1/2 boats arrived at Lymington (half because Johns boat was still curing) for an entertaining weekend and proof that a well sailed Giles boat can still win opens meetings. Enjoy Spikes report attached and see you all ot Oxford for the Inlands.

1st 294 Spike Daniels – Oxford SC
2nd 421 John Claridge – R. Lymington YC
3rd 413 Caroline Key – WOSC

Results – Southern Champs-Lymington 2016

Report – Southerns – Royal Lymington YC 2016


Cookham reach SC Open 2016

Three visitors joined the 11 home boats for what turned out to be a very blustery sail on this beautiful stretch of the River Thames at Cookham. 30degree wind shifts were the order of the day and several boats tested the water temperature. Although Simon led race one and two to start with Richard Palmer (returning to the Lightning fleet for the day) proved fitter and more consistent than Simon to win the Derek Bailey trophy for first home boat with two wins. Cookham is different that they only award the open meeting win to a class member so with a win in race three Simon was awarded the open trophy. Congratulations to Bryan who kept it upright and with two seconds took his first Open meeting podium! Kevin Singleton came home 3rd in the open.

1st 150 Richard Palmer – Cookham Reach SC
2nd 420 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC
3rd 407 Bryan Westley – Aldridge SC

lightning cookham open-2016


Northern Championships 2016 – DenholmeC

No sooner had we recovered from the Exhaustion of the Sea Champs we were off up North to Jason’s home club of Denholme for the second year of actually having the Northern’s in the North! This picturesque little club welcomed us with open arms, fed us superbly and the Village of Saltare will never recover from the sight of Bryan’s Dancing to Take on me! Nuff Said. For a change Jason wrote the report so I will leave to enjoy.

1st 420 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC
2nd 413 Caroline Key – WOSC
3rd 417 Jason Gallagher – Denholme SC

Results – Northern Champs-Denholme 2016

Report – Northern Championship 2016


Sea Championships 2016 – Thorpe Bay YC

Ten Boats made it back to Essex for the 2016 Sea Championships and following his success at UP River Simon Hopkins held off the strong challenge from Paul White in the big winds to win his first Sea Championships having finished second to Paul so many times!

1st 420 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC
2nd 406 Paul White – Draycotte SC
3rd 404 Penny Yarwood – Up River YC

Results – Sea Champs 2016

Report – Sea Champs 2016


Up River YC Open – 2016

14 boats out on Sunday race day and champagne sailing weather. Simon Hopkins put the new Claridge boat to good use and won the first and third race to take the meeting. As Robbie had sailed LN21 at the last meeting we let him borrow a newer boat this event, LN 39!

1st 420 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC
2nd 406 Paul White – Draycotte SC
3rd 39 Robbie Claridge – Royal Lymington YC

Results – Lightning Up River YC Open 2016

Report – Up River Open 2016


Manor Part SC Open – 2016

This years series kicked off at the lovely Manor Park SC in Staffordshire. I think the motto for this one was what goes on tour stays on tour from the reports I have heard. Festivities aside all had a great days training from Robbie and then Sunday all had a great blast with Paul emerging a worthy winner of the opening event. Great to see many new faces at this event. Next stop Up River YC in Essex on 7th and 8th May.

1st 406 – Paul White – Draycotte SC
2nd 21 – Robbie Claridge – Royal Lymington YC
3rd 413 – Caroline Key – WOSC

Lightning 368 Open Manor Park_2016


WOSC Rum & Mince Pies – 2015

A very optimistic 12 sailors travelled to West Oxfordshire for the end of season event and were rewarded with a windy but satisfying sail.

1st 408 Alex Baxter – WOSC
2nd 294 Spike Daniels – Oxford SC
3rd 419 John Claridge – Royal Lymington YC

WOSC – Report

Results


Broxbourne SC- 2015

With 6 visitors arriving with what turned out to be 7 Lightning’s (?) a local Laser sailor joined in to boost the fleet to 8. Unfortunately Wind guru was completely wrong and in a light and shifty affair Penny, Caroline and John gave him a hard time but Robbie held on for the win.

1st 420 Robbie Claridge – Royal Lymington YC
2nd 404 Penny Yarwood- Up River YC
3rd 419 John Claridge – Royal Lymington YC

Report to follow

2015 Lightning368_Broxbourne_2015


 

Inlands – Whitefriars SC- 2015

12 boats descended on Whitefriars for the inlands and had a great days racing by all accounts. Well done to Paul regaining his Inland title. Spike is showing he is a contender as he is pushing the leaders after only recently purchasing a Lightning. Simon’s lead in the travellers was short lived as Paul regains the top spot.

1st 406 Paul White – Draycote SC
2nd 29 Clive Evans – Weston SC
3rd 294 Spike Daniels – Oxford SC

Results – Inlands 2015

Report – Inlands – Whitefriars 2015


 

Hunts SC- 2015

Our first visit to Hunts SC as a class and it was a great day even if the wind was absent! Four visitors joined the 3 home boats and we shared with the Moths and learnt how quick they are when there is very little wind. It was a tight affair but went to the last race with Penny just doing enough to take the win. However we might have a new surprise leader of the travellers series!

1st 404 Penny Yarwood – Up River YC
2nd 288 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC
3rd 274 Mike Liggett – Hunts SC

Report – Hunts 2015

Results – Hunts 2015


 

Nationals Northampton- 2015

Great weekend had by the 19 boats that turned up. Great win by Robbie Claridge with John coming second to make it a family affair, Paul White completed the podium.

1st 419 Robbie Claridge – Lymington YC
2nd 420 John Claridge – Lymington YC
3rd 406 Paul White – Draycote SC

First Lady – Penny Yarwood – Up River YC
First Junior – Charlie Whelan – Whitefriars SC
Silver Fleet Champion – Spike Daniels – Oxford SC

Results – Nationals Northampton 2015

Report – Nationals Northampton 2015

 


 

Oxford SC Open – 2015

Nine boats contested the Oxford open and Clive was victorious for his first Lightning open meeting victory.

1st 29 Clive Evans – Weston SC
2nd 413 Caroline Key – WOSC
3rd 413 Sue Thomas – Oxford SC

Results – Oxford 2015


 

Sea Champs – Snettisham SC- 2015

Eight Boats made it to Snettisham on the opening weekend of the infamous Norfolk week. Robbie had a clean sweep to add the Sea Champs to his Northern title.

1st 419 Robbie Claridge – Denholme SC/ Lymington YC
2nd 404 Penny Yarwood – Up River YC
3rd 406 Paul White – Draycotte SC

Results – Sea Champs 2015

Sea Championships – Snettisham Beach Sailing Club
On Saturday 8 boats made the trek east to Snettisham Beach Sailing Club for the Lightning Sea Championships and through some careful planning the event coincided with the first weekend of Norfolk week. Due to the tides for the racing the rest of the week the first race on Saturday was at 7pm, with the programme stating 2 races and the race officer confidently said there would be light until 9.30…

With some grumbling from Bryan about the waves we set off from the beach in about 15 knots of breeze onto the water for the first race. Robbie quickly hit the front and was largely untroubled as he surfed his way downwind to a lead which he would hold onto for pretty much the rest of the weekend! Second and again relatively untroubled, wondering how Robbie was making his boat go so fast and enjoying the wind was Paul. Battling over 3rd it was Penny and Norfolk week veteran Ian Gore, taking a break from his National 12 this year, with Ian coming out on top in the first race. With the high wind and massive waves (at least for Bryan) saw the rest of the fleet well spread out.

The second race was started a bit optimistically in fading light and while the breeze had died the waves remained making sailing fast tricky. Robbie disappeared again, almost literally this time given the light and the fleet made it round one and a half laps before being told to head in with Paul in second, Penny getting the better of Ian this time and Caroline fifth again.
Back on shore the torches were out to pack up the boats with Tony discovering that the holes on his deck and the lumpy water had filled the boat up enough for it to still be pouring out 5 minutes after coming off the water! After filling up on a hog roast and a few drinks it was agreed that whoever was up at 6am for racing would make sure everyone else was up, except of course for Robbie, we were happy if he wanted a lie in…

The morning heralded a lighter breeze and to Bryan’s relief a lack of waves, although this happy state of affairs was slightly marred by the news we were to start with the Nationals 12s and the fact that Robbie made it out of bed.
The first race of the day proved to be a bit of a nightmare at the start, apparently the news had not gotten to the National 12s about the Lightings starting with them and there were a few ‘polite exchanges’ on the start line before we got underway. While Robbie did his usual bit at the front ,in the lighter wind the racing was much closer between the following boats with Paul, Penny and Caroline jostling for most of the race. In the end Penny went clear and Paul managed to sneak past Caroline on the last leg to snatch third.
In the second race the tide had turned and it was much more tactical. Another entertaining start saw Robbie taking offence to some underhand National 12 tactics, only to get them back further up the beat. Racing was again close behind Robbie, Penny again taking second and this time Caroline holding onto third from Paul.

With the end of racing for the weekend we were back on shore for some well-deserved breakfast and prize giving which saw Robbie take the event, Penny second and Paul third. Congratulations also for Penny who is taking part in the rest of Norfolk week and was second overall for the day!
A big thanks to Snettisham who put on a wonderful weekend, a great event which was friendly and lively with all the other Norfolk Week competitors, with some great sailing. We will definitely be looking to go again in the future, although I think I’ll pack some more torches next time!


 

Cookham Reach Open – 2015

Summary to follow

1st 420 John Claridge – Lymington YC
2nd 413 Caroline Key – WOSC
3rd 124 Kevin Singleton – Cookham SC

Results – Cookham 2015


 

Northern Area Championships – Ullswater 2015

Ten boats arrived at Ullswater YC, which has to be once of the most picturesque venues for sailing in the country. It was great to see Ian Ranson make a return to his Lightning after 3 years in the garage. He got stronger as the weekend progressed to finish a fine 3rd. Ahead of Ian it was a procession with Simon trying to keep Robbie on the same leg at the finish and mostly failing. But with Robbie now an honorary Northerner and a member of Denholme SC the trophy stays in the north for the first time in a long time.

1st 420 Robbie Claridge – Denholme SC
2nd 288 Simon Hopkins – Up River YC
3rd 110 Ian Ranson – Bolton SC

Results – Northern Area Championships 2015

Report – Northern Area Championships – Ullswater 2015


 

MANOR PARK SC 2015

OK all those time I said that was the fastest I have ever been in a Lightning, forget it. Saturday was the fastest I have ever been in a boat. With the light bits in the mid 20mph’s and the gust rolling though well over 30mph its amazing we got 3 races in and so many boats survived. Many tired people in the pub that night for the usual gathering at the Old Peculiar.

Manor Park ran an excellent event as usual, it really is a super club and I might move back to Staffordshire so I can join! Full report to follow.

1st 406 Paul White
2nd 288 Simon Hopkins
3rd 404 Penny Yarwood

Results – Manor Park 2015

Report – Manor Park 2015


 

UP RIVER YC 2015

Saturdays training saw 8 boats out on the water for a very windy practice and several swims testing the temperature of the River crouch. Saturday night was a messy affair as usual and next morning 11 more boats arrived to make 19 in total. Sadly the wind failed to arrive and the three races were sailed in next to zero wind. Very challenging as it was one of the highest tides of the year!

Penny took delivery of 404 just before race one and after a tuning (or getting used to no thwart) in race 1 showed us how to do it in the next two to win the first open of the year. Ian Gore borrowed a boat to take second and your chairman defied his self inflicted weight penalty to take third.

1st 404 – Penny Yarwood
2nd 180 – Ian Gore
3rd 288 – Simon Hopkins

Race Results – Up River YC

Report – Up River 2015


 

RUM & MINCE PIES – WOSC – 2014

A fantastic turnout of 26 boats arrived for the end of year Rum & Mince Pie event at West Oxfordshire SC. Unfortunately the wind did not get the email and it looked like being a competition on who could drift the fastest! Top two places were taken by people who have ‘left’ the class and only Clive in the top 4 was sailing his own boat, perhaps we need a new rule!Good luck to Matt and Alex as they leave for pastures new.

With Paul and Richard unable to make the event due to last minute problems, the travellers series was won by Richard Palmer to add to his many titles for the year. Obviously the man to beat in 2015.

1st 288 – Matt Hopkins
2nd 408 – Alex Baxter
3rd 29 – Clive Evans
4th 177 – Simon Hopkins

Race Results – WOSC


 

INLANDS – 2014

A smaller-than-expected fleet assembled at Haversham Sailing Club, Milton Keynes, to contest the 2014 Lightning 368 Inland Championships. The day dawned mistily and very, very still – just as forecast – but by the 11h30 off, the breeze had filled in to a gentle 3 or 4 knots (just enough to keep the sailors honest) and the sun threatened to shine for the duration.

The first race saw Simon Hopkins in #253, Bryan Westley in #82, current Inland Champion Paul White in #406 and Jack Barrett in #403 try to steal a march at the pin end – which proved to be fatal as none of these featured in the final top five placings. First to the windward mark were Richard Palmer in #193, local girl Sarah Gordon in #115, Clive Evans in #29 and Caroline Key in #413. After an initially strong showing, Gordon faded to the back, leaving the way clear for the hardened travellers. Key pulled out a blistering second lap to pull clear of the fleet by some 16 seconds, and stayed well in front to take line honours, followed by Evans who had managed to just sneak over in front of Palmer. White fought back strongly from his disappointing start to put in a fast third lap to take 4th place, edging out youngster Alexander Baxter in #49.

In the expectation that the wind would pick up in the afternoon, the fleet retired to the club house to enjoy the customarily excellent lunch.

With the breeze straying vaguely either side of due South and showing signs of gusting, the second race looked to be marginally more exciting, with lap times dropping by 4 or 5 minutes: a bunched start saw Palmer and Chris Abela in #412 tack straight off onto Port followed by a handful of others, whilst Key – adrenaline obviously still pumping from her initial win – went for a swim just over the start line. By the time the initial beat had unstaggered at the first mark, White had edged in front, hotly pursued by Palmer, Evans, Simon Hopkins in #253 and Baxter. The front runners broke clear of the fleet and produced some intriguing sailing with places changing frequently amongst the top five. Key slowly clawed her way back up the rankings to take 5th; Palmer held White’s challenge off to take first, followed by Baxter in 3rd and Evans in 4th.

All still to play for in the final race, and the wind freshened noticeably, giving promise of some cracking reaches across the lake between buoys 5 and 8. An incident-free start saw the fleet under way, with Abela rounding the windward mark first, followed closely by Palmer, White, then youngster Jack Barrett in #403. Abela kept his lead into the third lap, hotly pursued by Palmer and White. Palmer then seemed to find another gear and drove relentlessly to the front of the fleet, leaving White behind by some 16 seconds at the finish. Key put in a massive final lap to clinch 3rd, pushing Abela into 4th.

Two bullets and a discarded 3rd were enough to see Richard Palmer clinch the 2014 Inland Championships. Caroline Key and Paul White ended even, but Caroline’s initial win saw her take second place to Paul’s third.

The top six places were as follows:

1st Richard Palmer, Cookham Reach SC
2nd Caroline Key, West Oxfordshire SC
3rd Paul White, Draycote SC

Race Results – Haversham 2014

 


 

BRISTOL AVON OPEN – 2014

Four visitors arrived to join the seven local boats for the Lightning’s first trip to Bristol Avon Sailing Club. We were met by mirror like conditions, with the local wildlife and the local paddle boarders making it look very easy paddling up and down the river.

With 11 boats out on the water, Margaret our race officer of the day decided it would be best to start in two flights, 4 minutes apart. There was no strategy in her choice of who started first, choosing the 6 oldest (lowest boat numbers) to go first and the newer (higher numbered) ones in the second fleet. This would be reversed in the next race.

Sailing a sausage course leaving the marks to starboard, the first race got under way. With local lady Christine Higham showing us all how it was done, leading the first fleet from father and son duo Andy and Matt Cooper from BASC and Alex Baxter from West Oxfordshire not too far behind. Gradually the second flight lead by Chris Abela, closely followed by Caroline Key, caught up and over took some of the first flight boats, meaning that the lead boats had to finish in excess of four minutes ahead of them to win. On the last rounding of the windward mark, a sudden change in wind direction meant that Caroline overtook Chris and was steadily catching up the time difference on Christine. Although Christine did finish on the water first, Caroline some 2 and half minutes behind was close enough to win race one, with Christine second and Matt third.

After a very filling lunch of chilli, rice, garlic bread and a desert of apple pie and custard was served race two got underway, with the 5 newer boats starting first. There seemed to be a pattern emerging that whoever started second, caught the first flight up and it was not too long before Alex Baxter took the lead and then went on to win race two, followed by Matt and Andy Cooper in second and third.

After a short break race three took place. With only 8 boats going out, Margaret decided to have just the one start. Yet again young Alex took the lead, he was certainly getting to grips with river sailing and a loaned boat from Mark Godden. He went on to win the race and overall victory with two race wins, with Andy Cooper coming second and Chris Abela third in the final race.

I would like to give a huge thanks to Bristol Avon for holding their first Lightning event. They made all the visitors very welcome, an extremely friendly club. Lets hope the next time we visit, there will be just a bit more than a puff of wind!!

Final Results.

1st Alex Baxter West Oxfordshire Sailing Club
2nd Caroline Key West Oxfordshire Sailing Club
3rd Matthew Cooper Bristol Avon S.C

Race Results – Bristol and Avon 2014


NATS 2014

Absolutely great weather throughout the weekend, always enough wind to keep everyone moving on Saturday and some really great racing on Sunday in a good steady breeze. Pitsford does make the very best of light to moderate winds and this weekend proved that once again.

24 boats took part, with pretty much everyone sailing all six races. A couple could only make the Saturday or the Sunday, but if there, everyone sailed making for some really first class racing right through the fleet. We had experienced hands and newcomers alike, one of our best NATS for a good while in my opinion.

Top Three are listed below.

1st 193, Richard Palmer, Cookham Reach SC
2nd 413, Caroline Key, WOSC
3rd 406, Paul White, Draycote SC

Race Report – Nationals 2014

Race Results – NATS 2014


Sea Champs 2014

Maybe it was the winter like conditions or maybe the threat of Hurricane Bertha but only 11 Lightning’s arrived at sunny Southampton water for the 2014 Sea Championships at Weston SC. It was windy, but not unmanageable and it looked like it was going to be a fun day on the water. Maybe the only sailing we would have if Bertha arrived on time!

Starting as part of the 15 boat Weston Open ‘Slow Handicap Fleet’ the Lightning’s soon showed their dominance over the other classes. Simon Hopkins decided hard right was the way to go to stay out of the tide and rounded ahead of Robbie Claridge, Clive Evans and Alexander Baxter. Alex ruing selling his boat to Clive the week before and sailing LN 49 kindly loaned by mark Goddon. Simon held Robbie off till the 3 leg when he proceeded to give a master class in downwind sailing to pull out an unassailable lead by the start of the second beat. Rounding together, with a massive wind shift making it a one leg to the windward mark, it was then a ‘who was fitter hiking’ and honours went to the younger legs of Clive to get ahead of Simon. Move of the race went to Chris Abela who had been tracking the battle for 4th and 5th between Alex and Matt Hopkins. Leaving them to fight it out he pinched 4th place from both of them.

Race 2 back to back and there was a bit more wind. Matt decided he wasn’t as well as he thought following a bout of Bronchitis (and a swim on the final run) went for a rest. The fleet lined up with a very biased line and in the crow by the pin Alex infringed and had to do turns and Simon popped out of the bunch for clear wind and a healthy lead. Star award of the race was to Alex for heading out into the tide and finding the wind bend to be back in contention at the windward mark. What followed was pretty much a repeat of Race 1, Robbie waited till the run to sail passed and leave everyone behind. This time the battle for second between Simon and Clive went to the older man and Alex kept a keen eye on Chris behind him.

Race 3 and a rested Matt joined the event and it obviously paid as he won the pin and headed out into the tides to get the wind bend and lead at the first mark from Robbie, Hugh Spencer and Clive. Mayhem then ensued behind with a Solo stuck in irons at the windward mark and a very interested port/starboard incident between Simon and Paul Beven that must be seen on You Tube! With the wind now up into the 20+mph downwind was very exciting! Robbie did to Matt what he did to Simon previously and took his third win. Simon having untangled himself from Paul was grateful to see all before him fail in the now serious gusts and accepted a gifted third place.

Saturday night was entertaining as always with way too much beer and curry consumed, perhaps with expectation of no sailing on Sunday!

Perhaps gratefully for some Sunday arrived like the end of the world with horizontal rain, average 25mph wind and gusts well above 35mph! Racing was predictable abandoned and everyone looked forward to the early trip home.

With 3 straight wins Robbie Claridge took the Sea Championships from ‘old man’ Simon Hopkins in second on count back from Clive Evans making an impressive début in his Lightning.

Next stop is the Nationals at Northampton Sailing Club on 6th- 7th September. With all the new faces in the fleet this year this could be anyone’s to win.

Top Three are listed below.

1st 417, Robbie Claridge Lymington YC
2nd 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC
3rd 28, Clive Evans, WOSC

Race Results – Sea Champs 2014


Up River 2014

With very little wind promised for Saturday a hopeful 6 boats turned up and went for a play on the river. There was some training but the best game turned out to be chase the beer can which were floating down river faster than we could sail! This was followed by the traditional take away, too much beer; the chairman falling of a bar stool and cutting his leg and a wet night spent on Penny’s yacht listening to the thunder storms roll through.

A Sunday arrived we sat in the club house watching the torrential rain kill the wind dead and wondered if we were actually going to get any racing in at all. However right on cue the sun came out and a breeze picked up. It was patchy over the course and looked to favour the lightweights but we put 12 boats on the water for the first race, new to the class Rob unfortunately having to pack up before he started and go home as his wife was ill.

Race one and joining Paul, Simon and Penny at the front up the beat was Ian Gore, ex Lightning National champion in Mike Ince’s boat. Paul led Ian and Simon round but they made a huge mistake of staying on the south bank. Penny crossed early to the north bank for a substantial lead whilst the early leaders were swallowed up as the pack followed Penny’s course. The long run down the river allowed the light weights through and Ben Harris (back from Canada) in 172 and Paul Beven joined Paul and Ian to try to chase Penny down. This they failed to do and Penny took a fine win ahead of the two Paul’s, Beven leading White home.

Race 2 was back to back over the same course and the wind was getting lighter. The same 4 culprits were at the windward mark but this time everyone crossed the river not letting penny through. Paul W and Ian sailed off for their own private battle for the win with honours to Ian. Simon sailed backwards through the fleet as in the first race to allow Penny to take third and Ben to take his second fourth of the day.

After a fine break with tea and cakes provide by Mrs H (worth coming to URYC for this alone) the fleet launched for the final race against the flooding tide. Finally Matt woke up and as the fleet roll tacked up the North bank he sailed through to an early lead. However as with most of his season so far he had to retire as his boat started sinking as the buoyancy tanks filled up. This left Ian and Paul W to battle it out for the race and Open win. Simon bravely fended of Ben for the first lap before a cruel wind shift at the leeward mark allowed Ben to sail up the middle of the river whilst Simon who had rounded first was headed to the bank. Back at the front it looked like Ian had enough to hold Paul off but a slight mistake in crossing the tide let Paul through to take the win and tie them on 1,2 each. Ben led Simon home from Penny.

The open meeting therefore went to Paul White for the third year running with Ian Gore Second and Penny Yarwood third.
Once again a great days sailing with close tactical racing right through the fleet at a club that has the most talented Lightning Sailors in the Class. Maybe that’s why visitors are too scared to come to sail here! Roll on the next event the infamous Sea Camps at Weston SC. One not to be missed but watch out Up River YC will be bringing at least 7 boats!

Top Three are listed below.

1st 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
2nd 248, Ian Gore, Up River YC
3rd 325, Penny Yarwood, Up River YC

Race Results – Up River 2014


Cookham Reach 2014

Seventeen turned out for an upstream start which was to take the fleet round a boomerang three mark course setting off from the clubhouse, then upstream an upwind around two buoys to starboard and back down to the club.

Four boats vied for front row on the line at the start having fended off a port tacker playing bumper cars. The light northwesterly wind and slight stream split the fleet of seventeen almost fromt the off, and the tail-ender took 10 minutes to cross the line.

During the earlier briefing the fleet were warned that the first race would coincide with 75 paddleboarders coming down the Thames competing in a long distance event, and to treat them as an obstruction. There is always something to add a bit of extra excitement or some say frustration to river sailing. As it turned out they passed by without incident taking the Bucks bank line with the Lightnings preferring the Berkshire side. More of a problem was the cruiser that bulldozed through the fleet despite calls from the safety boat and sailors to slow down and keep clear.

Richard Palmer led from the first lap and unperturbed by the 45 degree wind shift continued to the finish; 50 lengths ahead of Martin Evans with Jack Barratt coming in third.

Breaking for a lunch, everyone greatly enjoyed the salmon or chicken en croûte, sitting outside and taking in the warmth of the midsummer day’s sun.

For the second race, The breeze had picked up to force 3 but then dropped off at the one minute signal. At the gun, Caroline Key was over and had to wait until the fleet had passed before doing her penalty. She systematically moved back through the pack into third by the end of the first lap, and finished second with Richard ahead and Martin third.

Race three quickly followed. Richard and Jack, feeling bold, pushed to the line where they both stalled with ten seconds to go but couldn’t hold and were judged to be OCS, but Caroline and Martin timed it perfectly and took an early lead. In the light winds, roll tacking and gybing were key to gaining an advantage, a few boats at a time. Richard caught up and led to the finish for his third win of the day, followed by John Claridge and Alex Baxter.

A lovely day’s sailing, frustrating at times – with the many other water craft to contend with, but that’s all part of river sailing, and adds to the enjoyment.

Grateful thanks to Cookham and the many non-sailing duty teams who made the event possible. Thanks also to the visitors and their supporters, especially Alan Saunders who travelled from the South Coast for his first Lightning Open.

Top Three are listed below.

1st 193, Richard Palmer, CRSC
2nd 150, Martin Evans, CRSC
3rd 417, John Claridge, Royal Lymington YC

Race Results – Cookham 2014


Manor Park 2014

The forecasts all looked good. A decent entry booked in, cracking wind, a bit of brightness in the sky and a table booked at the local pub for post-racing discourse.

At the briefing, fifteen helms and safety crew gathered for an ominous warning from Race Officer Dave Norris: “Funnel clouds forecast for later, along with thunder and lightning…” So, with the lure of Tornados, Lightning, Hurricanes – (this is starting to sound like an RAF retired fighter display!) we took to the water anyway – though it did, amazingly, seem that the wind had lost the postcode for Staffordshire as the first race set off under the guise of a heavy-rain driftathon.

Lee Bratley gave an absolute masterclass in ‘finding clear wind’ as he set off well ahead of the fleet from the very opposite end of the line to everyone and, for the first time in his Lightning sailing career, rounded the windward mark in first place ahead of the squabbling pack.

Of course, true to form, when the wind completely switched off around the second mark, Lee was left stranded on the wrong side of the course and was swallowed up by the pack that were inching along in what remained of any breeze – first became thirteenth in about twenty metres!

Keeping any momentum was key in these supremely light conditions and it was young (and light) Alexander Baxter that sneaked ahead of Dom Clayton to take race one.

With the race taking so long, lunch was taken rather than suffer more pain.

Post-lunch, the wind did start to show signs of increasing just a tad – and the anticipated tornadoes and flying cows seemed set to fail to show up as the sun started to twinkle through.

Though the wind had increased, we’re still only talking ‘very-light-breeze’ versus ‘breath-of-a-swan’ from the morning and another clear-wind start was essential to make good progress – shown by Bryan Westley as he snuck under almost everyone in the resulting low-speed melee.

This one became a battle between Paul White and Caroline Key, eventually won out by Paul. With Matt Hopkins finishing third to add to his fourth in the earlier race, the whole event would come down to this final round and it looked to be a battle between the youthful Alex Baxter, wily fox Caroline and risk-taking Matt.

However, despite his first race tenth place, no-one should discount Paul either.

Race three, then and initial confusion as to where the windward mark was soon saw things settle down into a cracking battle between these usual suspects – though yet another boat breakage for Matt took him from contention very early on.

Under sunny skies and a breeze that gusted to the heady heights of around six knots, it was Caroline Key that came out on top followed by Paul and Alexander. In fact, Paul’s result took him right to the top end of the leaderboard, Caroline taking the event on countback from Paul, with Alexander just one point back in third.

As ever, though, racing was close all the way down the results with no fewer than eleven boats finished tied on points with someone else – that one bad tack could drop people a full four places in some cases.

So, whilst the maelstroms and four-horsemen failed to materialise, a good day was had by all and the 2014 Lightning368 Northern Championship trophy was awarded to Caroline Key under a sunny sky and in the presence of much cake!

A terrific day’s racing – and, according to the telling off that the boys got from Emma at 130am during post-racing celebrations – a terrific nights social as well!

Massive thanks to all at Manor Park for a fantastic event – especially to Dave and his team for actually getting three races off in some very challenging conditions.

The next event for the class will be at Cookham Reach for the Southern Champs on Saturday the 21st of June.

Top Three are listed below.

1st 413, Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
2nd 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
3rd 29, Alex Baxter, West Oxford SC

Race Results – Manor Park 2014


Broxbourne 2014

What a contrast to the last time we doubled up with the Moth fleet for an open. At Whitefriars wind 20mph plus, gusting 30mph plus, Broxbourne last Saturday 1mph gusting 2mph!! Let the driftathon commence. A smaller turnout of 9 boats visited the delightful setting in the heart of the Lee Valley Country Park. With 3 races planned, Richard the race officer had difficulty in setting the courses, eventually race 1 got underway

Top Three are listed below.

1st 29, Alex Baxter, West Oxford SC
2nd 193, Richard Palmer, Cookham Reach SC
3rd 413, Caroline Key, West Oxford SC

Race Results – Broxbourne 2014

Race Report – Broxbourne 2014


Oxford 2014

Another Light wind day at Oxford, but super sunshine and great day out on the water. 21 Boats taking part really was a super turnout, but there was plenty of room for everyone, although I did find myself rather near to the front of the fleet at one point, all very disconcerting, as I had no idea where to go!!!

Light but good winds in the morning saw everyone round nicely, unfortunately the wind was a little too light in the afternoon so the last race was abandoned. But it was a good day out nonetheless.

Top Three are listed below.

1st 193, Richard Palmer, Cookham Reach SC
2nd 29, Alex Baxter, West Oxford SC
3rd 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC

Race Results – Oxford 2014

Race Report To Follow


Whitefriars 2014

A very challenging day, with winds gusting 5 to 30 Kts made for some interesting sailing, but fifteen boats still ventured out to race the first open of 2014.

The strong wind guys really did have their day, with Paul White in first place, Richard Palmer in the number two slot, and Simon Hopkins coming in number three. Paul was number one in all three races, a real strong wind expert.

We’ll get the full results and a race report up on the events page as soon as we can.

Top Three are listed below.

1st 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
2nd 193, Richard Palmer, Cookham Reach SC
3rd 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC

Race Results – Whitefriars 2014

Race Report – Whitefriars 2014



Rum and Mince Pie 2013 – West Oxford SC

The Rum and Mince Pie event at West Oxford ended our 2013 season. The forecast was better than expect and for the most part the rain held off, albeit the winds were light. Nevertheless we kept the boats in interesting conditions. Matt Hopkins led the way in two out of the three races, closely followed by the top of the fleet. With twenty nine boats out on the water, we could have been mistaken for a Laser fleet. Great event to end the season, thanks must go to WOSC for an excellent day.

Top Four are listed below.

1st 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
2nd 413, Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
3rd 288, Rupert Whelan, Whitefriars SC

Results Rum and Mince Pie – 2013

Race Report – Rum & Mince Pie 2013


Inland Championships 2013 – Haversham SC

Paul White continued his successful season by picking up the Inlands title after a intense battle with Robbie Claridge the whole day. Just as intense behind Matt Hopkins and Richard Palmer could only be split by a tie break for the last spot on the podium.

Top Four are listed below.

1st 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
2nd 417, Robbie Claridge, Royal Lymington YC
3rd 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
4th 193, Richard Palmer, Cookham Reach SC

Race Results – Inland Championships 2013

Race Report – Inland Championships 2013


National Championships 2013 – Northampton

This was definitely a Championships of two halves as they say in football. With the light winds on Saturday being replaced by a gale on Sunday it had a bit for everyone! Bryan’s and Simon’s birthday celebrations on Saturday night kept everyone up later than they should have for tuned athletes but the post bar social at ‘The Towers’ was excellent as usual.

Out on the water the wins were spread around but it became a battle between Robbie Claridge and Paul White in the end with Robbie doing enough in the big winds on Sunday to secure the title. First Lady was Penny Yarwood, First Veteran, Hugh Spencer and first Junior Alex Baxter. Newcomer to the Lightning’s Richard Palmer mixed it up at the front of the fleet and took the Giles trophy for first non Claridge Boat.

Top Six are listed below and full results will follow.

1st 403, Robbie Claridge, Royal Lymington YC
2nd 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
3rd 193, Richard Palmer, Cookham Reach SC
4th 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
5th 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC
6th 325, Penny Yarwood, Up river YC

Race Results – Nationals 2013

Race report – Nationals 2013


Fishers Green 2013

Lovely day at Fishers Green, winds much better than forecast and sunshine all day made for a super day’s sailing at this pretty little club in the heart of the Lee Valley country park.

Matt, took the top slot with two wins, Caroline winning the last race, but Simon getting second place with two, 2nd slots.

Fishers Green put on a really nice day, with a galley to keep everyone going and cakes to end with. I have to say, I was more interested in the food rather than the sailing!!!

1st 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
2nd 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC
3rd 413, Caroline Key, West Oxford SC

Results List – Fishers Green 2013

Race Report – Fishers Green 2013


Hunstanton 2013

The fleet was small but perfectly formed and everyone had a fantastic weekend with every wind/weather condition possible at some point and sometimes during the same race! Always a challenge sailing within the Handicap fleet, especially racing alongside a Wayfarer, talk about wind shadow!

Paul did what he does best and put the Lightning at the top of the Leader board for the ‘Allcomers Handicap 2’ fleet for the whole weekend. It was a great advert for the class so lets hope he can keep it up for the whole week.

Click HEREfor the results as the week continues

Full results are published below, but the top three look like this:

1st 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
2nd 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
3rd 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC

Results List – Hunstanton SC 2013

Race Report – Hunstanton 2013


Broxbourne 2013

A very challenging day again as the wind failed to turn up again, but 8 boats turned out at this beautiful little Essex club. Matt was dominate with his new rig and only failed in the clean sweep by being over at the start of the last race and having a big chase on. Highlight of the day was Bryan leading the last race around the first 3 marks, before normal business was resumed.

Full results are published below, but the top three look like this:

1st 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
2nd 413, Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
3rd 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC

Results List – Broxbourne SC 2013

Race Report Broxbourne SC 2013


Cookham Reach 2013

HOT HOT HOT – would be the way to describle Cookham this year, the temperature on the start line was 34c in the shade for the afternoon races, but the wind did – just about – fill in for most of the racing and we kept moving, albeit on a few occasions backwards a bit.

Another super turnout, with twenty three boats on the water which equals the previous LN record for an open event at Cookham. New helms out on the water too, with fourteen visitors, and new boats too, LN416 sailed by Georgie Honey and LN417 sailed by Robbie Claridge.

Full results are published below, but the top three look like this:

Summary Results
1st 416, Robbie Claridge, Lymington YC
2nd 193, Richard Palmer, Cookham Reach SC
3rd 74, Rupert Whelan, Whitefriars SC

Results List – Cookham Reach SC 2013

Race Report – Cookham Reach SC 2013


Up River 2013

Well all I can say is that was a seriously windy weekend. Great days ‘training’ which became a blast about in the club boats, swapping in and out as tiredness set in. Sunday and more of the same and maybe the forecast put off a few but a creditable 11 boats took to the water. Matt’s run a bad luck continued and his mast became a two part design and that was the call for a few boats to decide enough was enough.
As expected in winds gusting high 30’s it became a showdown between Simon and Paul, With Simon taking his yearly swim whilst leading on the last run allowing Paul to add another open to the collection.

Full results are already available and the top three were as follows:

Summary Results
1st 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
2nd 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC
3rd 325, Penny Yarwood, Up River YC

Results List: Up River YC 2013

Race report – Up River YC 2013


Weston 2013

Another super weekend event at Weston for the 2013 Sea Champs, Great weather, particuarly on the Sunday and a very hospitable Club made for a really enjoyable weekend.

We had another excellent turnout, with eighteen boats on the water and some really close sailing, the back of the fleet are definitely mixing it up more with the middle fleet guys, which is a great credit to all the coaching and advice we have as a Class, those Class training days are really begining to make a difference.

Full results are already available and the top three were as follows:

Summary Results
1st 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
1st 416, Robbie Claridge, Lymington YC
3rd 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC

Results List – Weston SC 2013

Race Report – Weston 2013


Whitefriars 2013

Whitefriars SC on the Cotswold Water Park played host to the Lightning 368 class when they went to visit for the 1st time, in a joint event with the British Moth class.

We had 10 visiting boats and 2 local helms, Rupert and Charlie. Once bacon sandwiches had been consumed, the racing got under way in a somewhat stronger breezes than forecast, according to the wind thingy in the club house it was 15, gusting 28, so it was going to be an interesting sail. The conditions suited Paul who won all three races, but everyone had a great day out.

Many thanks to Rupert and Whitefriars for organising an excellent day’s sailing. See the race report for more details.

Summary Results
1st 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
2nd 236 Adam Styles, Severn SC
3rd 288, Rupert Whelan, Whitefriars SC

Results List – Whitefriars SC 2013

Race Report – Whitefriars 2013


Oxford 2013

Super day’s sailing at Oxford, given the very light conditions. The weather forecast was ‘improving’ all week, but the absence of rain, also had the wind slipping away too.

Anyway, three good races, albeit the middle one was very light, but we all managed to keeping moving at least. The final race did see the wind fill in some and the was a great charge for the line, with pretty much the whole fleet within a couple of hundred yards of each other.

Robbie took the top slot, with Rupert Whelan in 2nd and Sue Thomas in 3rd. You will find full on the race results and events page.

Summary Results
1st 416, Robbie Claridge, Lymington YC
2nd 288, Rupert Whelan, Whitefriars SC
3rd 410, Sue Thomas, Oxford SC

Results List – Oxford SC 2013

Race Report – Oxford 2013


Manor Park 2013

Following a really excellent training day, with coaching from Paul, Robbie and Simon the big fleet was ready and raring to go for the first racing event of the year.

Twenty Three took to the water on a bright, sunny and almost warm day. Winds were light, but following a short delay, filled in nicely and got everyone moving around the courses well. Matt Hopkins showed his form at the start of this new season storming away to take the first race, with Caroline coming in second and Penny third.

Race two and Matt slipped down the fleet a bit, with Penny taking top slot, followed by Alex in second and Simon in third.

In the final race of the day, Matt was once again leading the fleet, with Penny in the number two slot and Alex taking third.

The rest of the fleet weren’t to far behind the leaders, all that training paying off nicely.

Many thanks for all the hard work from Emma and Lee to organise and host the fleet for the weekend. Dave set some great courses in pretty difficult conditions and of course thanks much go to all the other help and support the Class received from member and helpers of Manor Park SC.

Summary Results
1st 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
2nd 325, Penny Yarwood, Up River YC
3rd 205, Alex Shaw, Manor Park SC

Results List – Manor Park SC 2013

Race Report – Manor Park 2013



Series 2012

The Rum & Mince Pie at West Oxford this weekend saw the end of the 2012 series, which is now contained within the Calendar Year and it’s been another great season for the Lightnings.

We’ve seen a little bit of everything this year, flat calm days, full blown gales, half empty reservoirs and rivers in flood, its all kept plenty of interest in the series which again has been very well attended.

We estimate we have about 270 active boats in the fleet, with some of our well attended events attracting almost ten percent of the Class. Seventy One helms have taken part this year, which is almost twenty five percent of the Class.

Racing has been very tight throughout the year and for the first time in a long while all rested on the last event, with just 5 points separating the top 4 helms.

Even that was not quite close enough, so with some really really close racing at West Oxford, it all came down to the very last race.

Even then, nothing separated the top two, who both finished with an amazing sixteen points each. So final positions were down to the placing’s in the very last race, close or what!!!

Our series winner by the closest of margins is Paul White, well done Paul. In second place is Matt Hopkins who’s sailed a brilliant series. In third slot is Dad, Simon Hopkins. Many congratulations to you all, we saw some very strong sailing from all of you.

SERIES RESULTS
1st 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
2nd 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
3rd 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC

SERIES RESULTS – 2012


Rum & Mince Pie 2012

Wow!!! what a final event of the season at West Oxford. Twenty Six boats out on the water, the highest turnout of the year. This is almost ten percent of the entire Class, few others can match that. We had seventy one helms take part in the series overall. That’s about twenty five percent of the class and the R&MP was the highest turnout of any class at WSOC Oxford this year. But any measure that is pretty impressive for a little Class like ours.

Racing was great fun, winds were light but everyone kept moving well, with some good courses set by Adrian to make the most of the breeze. The whole fleet stayed together, no one fell off the back so everyone had a racing partner and there were some real tussles throughout the fleet.

Up front it was all to play for in the series, with Paul, Matt, Simon and Caroline all in a position to win.

Down the back!!! well it was real fun. Penny got tangled up with the tail-enders in the last race and told all the children off for making so much noise (that’s the 40 yr old children I mean, the youngsters are very well behaved). She was a little confused by the – Port, Starboard, Whatever – rule, which to those in the know, basically means I have no idea what I’m actually doing, or who has got right of way, but we are going to crash anyway.

So as you can tell everyone had a great day. Up front Robbie came out on top for the event, with Matt in 2nd place and Paul in 3rd. The series results are posted above.

Summary Results
1st 414, Robbie Claridge, Royal Lymington YC
2nd 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
3rd 406, Paul White, Draycote SC

Results List – Rum & Mince Pie 2012

Race Report to Follow


Inland Championships – Haversham SC

Another good turnout with thirteen boats out on the water for the 2012 Inlands at Haversham SC.

So, trying to write this when I’m 3000 miles away in Florida is quite a challenge, but I’m assuming the weather was fine, good winds and everyone enjoyed the racing. Matt Hopkins certainly did, he came 1st in all three races. Well done Matt.

I don’t have a race report yet, so it’s difficult to add more, other than to say I’m fairly sure Florida was warmer than Haversham, winds not sure, no rain here!!!

Summary Results

1st 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
2nd 413, Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
3rd 406, Paul White, Draycote SC

Results List – Haversham Open 2012

Race Report – Haversham 2012


Up River Open

Six boats turned out for the training day at Up River, on a blustery day on the River. Some great tuition and general help rigging and tuning boats, had everyone ready and raring to go for the racing on Sunday.

Sunday proved to be another windy day, just up Paul, Matt and Simon’s street, all of whom took great advantage of the conditions. Eleven boats raced with some every close finishing, Paul eventually coming out on top.

Summary Results

1st 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
2nd 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
3rd 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC

Results List – Up River Open 2012

Race Report – Up River 2012


Southern Championships – Cookham Reach SC

Another good day out at Cookham Reach SC for the Southern Championships. Seventeen boats out but unfortunately only two visitors to this re-scheduled event. Winds were light in the morning, but filled in nicely after lunch for some very close racing.

With their usual excellent hospitality, a super lunch and the biggest selection of after racing cakes I’ve ever seen, everyone had a great time, both on and off the water. Many thanks to Cookham for re-scheduling the event and the super organisation on the day.

Summary Results

1st 145, Alex Jones, Cookham Reach SC
2nd 150, Martin Evans, Cookham Reach SC
3rd 372, Nigel Webb, Cookham Reach SC

Results List – Northern’s, Manor Park SC 2012

Race Report – Southern’s, Cookham Reach SC 2012


Quartz Brewery Northern Championships – Manor Park

Another great weekend at Manor Park, light winds but gloriously sunny. Close racing throughout and some new faces, Welcome Jason and Emma at her home club racing I think her second open event.

Lee will put a weekend report together later in the week, but many thanks to Manor Park for hosting us, great stuff from the galley and all the folk helping run the event. Everyone had a really enjoyable weekend.

Summary Results

1st 413, Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
2nd 205, Alex Shew, Manor Park SC
3rd 412, Christopher Abela, West Oxford SC

Results List – Northern’s, Manor Park SC 2012

Race Report – Northern’s, Manor Park SC 2012


The NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS – Northampton

We had an absolutely super weekend of sailing and socialising, at Northampton this year. The breeze provided something for everyone, with a good solid hard hiking day on Saturday and a more moderate but still keeping moving day on Sunday, all in glorious sunshine and 27c.

There was a very solid turnout with twenty two boats out on the water, with a few first timers and juniors joining the many of the regulars. And once again Northampton SC were perfect hosts, the race officer setting some great courses and Elaine and the team in the galley providing some excellent food.

I think everyone had a thoroughly enjoyable weekend.

A full report is in prep as I write this, results and the series table have already been updated.

Summary Results

1st 403, Robbie Claridge, Royal Lymington YC
2nd 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
3rd 104, Louis Saunders, Combs SC
4th 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC

Results List – NATS 2012

Race Report – NATS 2012


Hunstanton Norfolk Week

Our first series of Class Starts at the famous North Norfolk Week sailing event and we had six boats out at Hunstanton on the first weekend. Sunny and windy, with a squall passing through on the first start, but everyone seems to have had a great time. Simon and lee are putting together a full race report which I’ll post as soon as it is available.

Summary Results

1st 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
2nd 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC
3rd 288, Matt Hopkins, Up River YC

Results List – Hunstanton 2012

Race Report – Hunstanton 2012


Sea Championships – Weston SC

A really difficult weekend at Weston this year with winds of 24Kts, gusting well over 30. On day one there were problems all round with racing abandoned after just 20 minutes. Half the boats were capsized before the first start, Caroline got separated from her boat, and was picked up by the safety boat. But with so many helms in the water already, Caroline’s boat was left adrift as the safety boats recovered people first. John Claridge parted company with LN402, which ended up on the beach, John being fished out of the water by a passing Laser helmed by Steve Cockrell.

Penny lost her rudder, but was again pulled out of the water onto a safety boat, her Lightning was now adrift in the main shipping channel. At this point, after just 20 minutes racing, the race officer quite rightly abandoned racing for the day, there were just to many people in the water for the safety boats to contended with. At one point Penny, Caroline and John were all on one safety boat together.

After more overnight storms which made the camping ‘interesting’ day two was little better with more winds gusting over 30Kts. However, a reduced fleet managed to complete three races in very difficult conditions. Paul won all three races, with Simon and John in very close pursuit.

Summary Results

1st 406, Paul White, Draycote SC
2nd 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River YC
3rd 402, John Claridge, Royal Lymington YC

Results List – Weston 2012

Race Report – Weston 2012


Broxbourne Open

Super fun at Broxbourne, with six boats on the water, two of them the home fleet, so well done to Geoff and Dave. Light drizzle in the morning soon cleared and we had a good sunny day, with slowing building winds, everyone was hiked out the the last race, mixing it up with the Club’s Saturday sailors in Flying Fifteens and Phathoms. Really amusing at the marks calling water on a couple of FFs, they are a lot bigger than a Lightning!!!

The racing was close all day, with Mike mixing it up with Simon and Caroline. Dave, Geoff and me, played along behind, with some equally close racing. In the last race we finished with just nano seconds between Simon and Caroline and then and equally close dual bwtween Dave and me.

Summary Results

1st 253, Simon Hopkins, Up River
2nd 413, Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
3rd 248, Mike Ince, Up River

Results List – Broxbourne 2012

Race Report – Broxbourne 2012


Oxford Open

Stunning sailing, absolutely stunning, Rock steady 10-15 mph wind, across this huge lake, sunshine all day, good fleet, young Alex sailing his first open.

Oxford is so good on day like this, the lake is man-made and about 50ft up in the air with nothing around it, barely a tree in sight. The breeze is just so steady on a day like Saturday, you can hike out right across the lake. I think everyone sailed all three races as it was just too good to miss and with fourteen boats out there was some good racing.

The girls led the way with Caroline, Penny and Sue taking ONE, TWO, THREE.

Summary Results

1st 413, Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
2nd 325, Penny Yarwood, Up River YC
3rd 410 Sue Thomas, Oxford SC

Results List – Oxford 2012

Race Report – Oxford 2012


Cotswold Open

Cracking event, but the sunshine deserted us today. On a blowy, blustery day, the first race started in light drizzle but slowly the weather improved. Although the wind was good to breezy even gusty at times, it was very sailable and the racing was hectic and fun.

Adam sailed some great races, closely followed by Caroline and Dad Simon. But everyone had some good racing and a very enjoyable day. Many thanks to Sam and the Cotswold team for some excellent organisation and another fantastic galley. The food will be a talking point for sometime to come, superb hospitality.

Summary Results

1st 236 Adam Styles, Severn SC
2nd 413 Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
3rd 292 Simon Styles, Severn SC

Results List – Cotswold 2012


Fishers Green Open

Another super event, albeit the fleet was rather small with eight boats taking to the water. A bright and sunny day greeted us at this pretty little club in the heart of the lee Valley Country Park. The sunshine was on this occasion, accompanied by very good wind, steady and from a good direction for the water.

Simon and Sue led the way around in race one, but there was much place changing throughout the fleet. Race two saw Sue take an early lead and hold it throughout. The winds picked up in the afternoon with Simon and Adam taking good advantage of the breezier conditions, Sue held in there for a well deserved third slot.

Summary Results

1st 253 Simon Hopkins, Up River YC
2nd 410 Sue Thomas, Oxford SC
3rd 236 Adam Styles, Severn SC

Results List – Fishers Green 2012

Race Report – Fishers Green 2012


Hillingdon OAC

First racing of the new year and we are off to a flying start at Hillingdon, see race report linked below.

Another glorious sunny day with okay, if not great wind, which at least kept the fleet moving. Great result for Matt, with his first open event win, more details in the race report.

Summary Results

1st 288 Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
2nd 413 Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
3rd 288 Dave Tiney, Hillingdon OAC

Results List – Hillingdon 2012


Rum and Mince Pie

Well our new season has gotten off to a cracking start, with twenty boats out on the water at the Rum and Mince Pie meeting at West Oxford SC. The breeze deserted us although it turned out a nice warm November day. We crept around the courses Adrian set with some skill, making the best of the very light and changeable winds. Nonetheless it was a fun day, Matt even managed a capsize much to the amusement of everyone else (he was paddling back at the time!!!).

Simon H showed us the way around, notching up his first open event win. Some images and even a short video to be posted up later in the week.

Summary Results

1st 253 Simon Hopkins, Up River YC
2nd 403 Robbie Claridge, Royal Lymington YC
3rd 288 Matt Hopkins, Up River YC

Full Results List – Rum & Mince Pie 2011

Race Report – Rum & Mince Pie 2011



Series Round-up 2011

Once again we’ve had a really great open series, building on the success of last year. In spite of the difficult economic climate attendances have held up pretty well, with seventy one helms taking part in one or more events. That is about one third of the boats on the boat register and really does show the strength of this small class in term of inclusion and participation. A really excellent result.

Honors for the series go to John Claridge, who has once again sailed a superb series. In number two slot is Caroline Key again another really strong performance right through the season. In third place is Simon Hopkins who as well as sailing extremely well again this year, has really promoted the Class at Up River, with boats now in double figures and continuing to grow.

We start it all again on the 12th November at West Oxford SC, another classic Lightning venue and of course our home. Mark Giles designed the Lightning here. I’m sure we can all look forward to another excellent season ahead and one in which we can grow the fleet and activity levels even further. I look forwards to meeting and sailing with everyone again

Very Best Wishes

Wayne

Series Summary Results

1st 402 John Claridge, Royal Lymington
2nd 406 Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
3rd 253 Simon Hopkins, Up River YC

2010-2011 Series Results.


Dorchester SC Open

An absolutely glorious sunny October day was the back drop for the last open event of the series at Dorchester on Thames SC. Twelve boats took to the water in light and variable winds.

Caroline took the number one slot in the first two races, then after a good lunch, Matt Hopkins came out first in the last race of the day. Dorchester were again superb hosts and I think everyone walked away having enjoyed the event on this pretty little lake.

Summary Results

1st 406 Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
3rd 288 Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
3rd 292 Simon Styles, Severn SC

Full Results List – Dorchester 2011

Race Report – Dorchester 2011


The Noble Marine – Inland Championships 2011

Manor Park SC

Another cracking event given the change in venue accommodated at very short notice. Very many thanks to Lee, Emma and Manor Park SC for making this happen. Rather light winds, but thirteen boats took part, all four home boats and nine visitors, which is an excellent showing. Some really close racing at the front of the fleet, Emma’s first open and Caroline stayed on for the Club’s Sunday racing and won that too.

Summary Results

1st 403 Robbie Claridge, Royal Lymington YC
2nd 104 Louis Saunders, Combs SC
3rd 253 Simon Hopkins, Up River YCC

Full Results List – Inlands 2011

Race Report – Inlands 2011


Up River Open 2011

Another fantastic weekend of sailing and socialising, this time at Up River YC.

Saturday saw us having a training day. The winds were no where near those forecast, so we have an excellent training session, expertly supervised by Penny Yarwood and Simon Hopkins.

Sunday, well the winds were a little stronger and rather gusty, but nevertheless provided some strong racing, with very close results, the top six positions separated by only 2 points. As usual some excellent support from the Club and a great gallery courtesy of Julia and Jo.

Summary Results

1st 269 Paul White, Haversham SC
2nd 253 Simon Hopkins, Up River YC
3rd 288 Matt Hopkins, Up River YC

Full Results List – Up River YC 2011

Race Report – Up River 2011


The Nationals 2011

An absolutely fantastic weekend of sailing and socialising, Class sailing just doesn’t get better than this.

Saturday saw us starting three races with a good to strong breeze and the fleet powered around three excellent courses, expertly set of the race officer. At the end of sailing, John Claridge was just ahead, with the rest of the fleet hard on his heels.

Sunday proved to be bright and sunny with just a bit less wind, providing more stunning sailing conditions. The two races provided some really outstanding sailing, with the whole fleet in close pursuit of the leader. Louis Saunders taking the event from John Claridge on the very last beat of the event.

Summary Results

1st 104 Louis Saunders, Combs SC
2nd 402 John Claridge, Royal Lymington YC
3rd 269 Paul White, Haversham SC

Full Results List – Nationals 2011

Race Report – The Nationals 2011


Combs Open Event

Great weekend sailing folks, Combs was a wonderful venue and early rain and light winds soon turned into bright sunshine and nice winds for the two afternoon races.

Ten boats competed, five home boats and five visitors so a slightly smaller turnout than expected, but I guess holidays are in full swing right now.

Caroline sailed wonderfully and was out in front in two of the three races, with Louis taking a 1st and two 2nd. This of course makes Caroline our new Northern Champion.

Caroline, Lee and myself held an impromptu and informal Lightning open at Manor Park on Sunday (Lee’s home Club) having stayed overnight with Lee and Emma on our way back south. Many thanks for the excellent hospitality Emma. Sailing at Manor Park was a contrast to Combs, with very strong gusty conditions, but Caroline was absolutely flying, really great fun.

Summary Results

1st 406 Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
2nd 104 Louis Saunders, Combs SC
3rd 155 Paul Thompson, Combs SC

Full Results List – Combs 2011

Race Report – Combs 2011


Cookham Reach Open Event

It was a very wet and rainy day, at least the morning was. The rain stopped around lunch time, but the winds moved around to the South and became more shifty and gusty, providing some challenging sailing, so the 21 boats turning out was an excellent result, with yet more new helms sailing their first Lightning open event.

The first race was held in steady drizzle, 21 boats lining up across the river for an exciting start, Robbie Claridge found himself over the line, but everyone else got off to a clean start. The first beat strung out the fleet somewhat, but generally everyone held together, with every boat finishing the race.

After and excellent lunch, race two and three, were held in sunshine and showers, the winds proving tricky, saw a few capsizes and a couple of retirements, but provided some good racing.

Summary Results

1st 403 Robbie Claridge, Royal Lymington
2nd 236 Adam Styles, (No Club as Yet)
3rd 402 John Claridge, Royal Lymington
4th 253 Simon Hopkins, Up River YC

Full Results List – Cookham 2011

Race Report – Cookham Reach 2011


Portishead Open Event

On a superb summers day, nine helms turned out for our first Class visit to Portishead Yacht and Sailing Club. The day started with almost no breeze, so racing was postponed for 30 minutes. Still no breeze but the fleet put to the water anyway.

The first race was a crawl around a very shortened course, but then right on Que the breeze appeared and race two and three were full on. Good long reaches saw the boats up and planning. The Severn provided some excellent water and the Club super hospitality throughout the day (more bacon sandwiches from heaven).

Everyone has a great day’s sailing, with some great stuff from Caroline, Hugh and Simon.

Summary Results

1st 406 Caroline Key, West Oxford SC
2nd 230 Hugh Spencer, Plymouth, Royal Corinthian YC
3rd 253 Simon Hopkins, Up River YC

Full Results List – Postishead 2011

Race Report – Portishead 2011


Sea Championships – Royal Lymington YC

Six helms braved the fairly challenging conditions last weekend to sail all eight races in the Lightning 368 Sea Championships 2011.

Saturday provided some strong winds, ‘good’ seas and tough racing, but all six boats managed to complete the courses and came back for more on the Sunday.

The breeze had drop some by the Sunday, but courses remained ‘interesting’. John and Hugh’s sea experience showed through with John taking the event followed by Hugh, Tony sailed into the very well deserved third slot. Full details in the race report, both the event results and the series table have been updated.

Summary Results

1st 402 John Claridge Royal Lymington YC
2nd 230, Hugh Spencer, Plymouth, Royal Corinthian YC
3rd 263, Tony Jacks, Evesham SC

Full Results List – Weston 2011

Race Report – Weston 2011


Weston Open

Another super day’s sailing, especially for those who like the big breeze. Given the forecast and the travelling we had a good turnout with nine boats out on the water. Big water, big course, big waves (well they were for me) big racing. 20kts gusts up around 30kts but reasonably steady on this nice open water made it manageable, well for most anyway. Sailing with the Supersofas, Europe’s and the Lasers was interesting but there was space for everyone and the fleets didn’t get tangled up, well we didn’t anyway.

Consistent winds all day meant the same conditions throughout and John’s sea experience really came to the fore. Once about the Up River contingent – Penny, Simon and Matt were right up there. A good day all round and some new faces in an open as well.

Once again the racing was very well organised by Weston and of course the club house hospitality was excellent.

Summary Results

1st 402 John Claridge Royal Lymington YC
2nd 253, Simon Hopkins,Up River YC
3rd 236, Adam Styles, Evesham SC

Full Results List – Weston 2011

Race Report – Weston 2011


Cotswold Open

Wow!!! what a fantastic day’s sailing. Weather was awful when people set off this morning, so Sixteen, yep, Sixteen Lightning’s out on the water was a great turnout. We all arrived in heavy showers and no wind, but the sky cleared and the wind picked up into a strong breeze.

Race one was just plain exciting, breezy and gusty, but race two and three were near perfect. Really good breeze, steady and clear, made for some great sailing, Small lake sailing really doesn’t get better than this. Good close racing throughout the fleet, absolutely everyone enjoyed this outing.

Cotswold were once again fantastic, great organisation, super food throughout the day and all for £11.50

Summary Results

1st 269, Paul White, Haversham SC
2nd 325, Penny Yarwood, Up River YC
3rd 253, Simon Hopkins,Up River YC
4th 288, Matt Hopkins,Up River YC
5th 378, Ellen, Clancy, Cotswold SC
6th 406, Caroline Key, WOSC

Full Results List – Cotswold 2011

Race Report -Cotswold 2011


Oxford Open

The Oxford Open proved to be a somewhat trying day. The wind was virtually zero when we got there, however, we decided to go out on the water and crawled to the first mark. Then it picked up nicely and made for some good racing all the way round the first race. It was interesting racing with the K1’s which seemed to perform very similar to a Lightning, so we all got mixed up. There were twenty boats trying to round the first mark as the wind filled in.

The afternoon, well that was a different story. It started okay after lunch, but then to wind died to nothing, all but three Lightning’s were timed-out not making the best racing. The third race was cancelled and that ended the day.

Let’s hope we get good conditions for Cotswold on the 7th May.

Summary Results

1st 402 John Claridge Royal Lymington YC
2nd 406 Caroline Key WOSC
3rd 408, Chris Abela Dorchester SC

Full Results List – Oxford 2011


Hillingdon Open

Our first racing event of the new year got us off to a flying start with twenty boats on the water, on a glorious sunny day. Many thanks to HOAC for organising the event and to the galley and support staff for providing sustenance throughout the day.

Twenty boats for the first event of the year is a new record and a best turnout at Hillingdon for many years. It was particularly good to see some youngsters out sailing Lightnings.

The day started with light winds which filled throughout the day, with a good breeze for the final race. Once again Caroline and John, were fighting it out at the front, but hot on their heels were Matt, Paul and Simon, with much changing of positions and general jockeying for places.

An excellent day’s racing all round, I’m sure everyone enjoyed the conditions and the hospitality of HOAC.

Summary Results

1st 402 John Claridge Royal Lymington YC
2nd 406 Caroline Key WOSC
3rd 288 Matt Hopkins, Up River YC
4th 308 Calvin Merry, Hillingdon OAC
5th 269 Paul White, Haversham SC
6th 253 Simon Hopkins, Up River YC

Full Results List – Hillingdon 2011

Race Report – Hillingdon 2011


Rum and Mince Pie

The new season got off to a great start last weekend with the Rum and Mince Pie and West Oxford SC Many thanks must go to Caroline Key, Adrian Hollier and the West Oxford team for organising the event and to the galley staff for providing the excellent lunch.

A record twenty competitors took part on a bright and sunny November day. Very light winds from the North West provided for some challenging sailing, nevertheless we managed three races albeit the last being on a somewhat shortened course.

Light wind expertise were in much demand with Caroline taking the top slot, However there was much changing of position and general excitement at marks and everyone battled for position, in a most friendly way of course. In the end Caroline won out, closely followed by Robbie and Rupert.

Summary Results

1st 406 Caroline Key WOSC
2nd 403 Robbie Claridge Royal Lymington YC
3rd 74 Rupert Whelan Whitefriars SC
4th 253 Simon Hopkins, Up River YC

Full Results List – Rum and Mince Pie 2010

Race Report – Rum and Mince Pie 2010