Keelboats contest is wide open

Wroxham Regatta continued much along the same pattern, overcast skies and a light north-northwesterly dominating the day.

The morning Allcomers races, for the Stewart Morris Shield ( Keelboats) and three separate dinghy trophies, are among the better supported entries, and yesterday was no exception.

In the former, variations in wind strength can lead to disparate results, as can a late entry. Chris Bunn joined this contest and duly won, but will not qualify.

The present leader is David Talbot, followed by Gordon Wishart and Peter Hawes, but as all three have already amassed at least one discardable race the way is open for others, such as Graham and Harriet Waring, to string some good results from the rest of the week and take the honours.

Talking of Graham Waring, he, crewed by Louise Tims, took the YBOD fleet by storm when he lead throughout the first round of their race although dropping back somewhat in the later stages.

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Simon and Edward Whipp, initially lying second, were the first to spoil his day, and went on to win by a significant margin from Bunn and Tansley, who steadily climbed up the fleet.

David and Nikki Talbot were always in the hunt to take third gun, while another surprise was a fourth for Tims.

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No, it wasn't Ian, who only managed sixth, behind Robert and Sally Self, but big brother Michael, crewed by Paul Youngs.

No doubt he regarded it as some compensation for being obliged to do turns by his niece Laura, who caught him fair and square while she was coming second in the morning Norfolk race.

The dinghy Allcomers are interesting for the plethora of designs, and the most conspicuous is X1, sailed by Martin Dixon and Chris Ingram, whose speed is giving the others much food for thought.

The others include Lasers of various descriptions, RS500, and a couple of Wayfarers, one in the care of Mike McNamara and Gilly Foulds, and regular visitors David and Sandra Wilson and their Graduate.

Looking back 58 years, I see that 1958 was the first year in which the Horning Rebel OD keelboats made their appearance. They continued to compete until the 1970s.

Martin Broom benefitted from mishaps from two rivals, both well remembered at Horning, when sailing Molecule in the Fireflies.

First George Southgate, leading the fleet, entangled his boom on another competitor's shroud and was slowly but inexorably pushed over, turned round, and ended with his mast embedded in the mud.

Then Keith Yeomans took the lead, but omitted to round No 5 mark, enabling Broom to take charge and win.

Unlike this year, summer appeared in time for the Norfolk race, during which Raymond Jeckells urged his crew to greater efforts by buying an ice-cream from a passing vendor.

But Chris Thurgar, leading him, was impervious to like appeals from his crew and went on to win.

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