Oxbridge visitors are taught a lesson

NBYC hosted Oxford and Cambridge Sailing Society on Saturday morning in their annual team match, sailed in White Boats over two races, three boats per side.

Blessed by a fair amount of wind, battle was joined, and the hosts emerged on top, winning by four points.

A 'team match' afternoon followed, involving two teams from the hosts, plus OCSS and two teams from Norwich School. For the first time for many years, Fireflies were sailed.

At the end of the day OCSS gained revenge, winning four of their races, one ahead of NBYC's second team, themselves one ahead of their first team.

The remaining race went to the Norvicensians, who doubtless learnt a lot from the experience.

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On Sunday, 13 Optimists, including nine visitors from Essex, Suffolk, and London area, competed in winds significantly lighter than their boats for four intensive races.

David Labrouche, of Dabchicks SC, swept the board, taking all four races by storm. Another visitor, Alistair Grant (Alton Water SC), took three second places and a third, to finish second. Colette Bacon (Corinthian Otters SC) had a second and a third, and other gun-takers were Deborah Hughes (Upper Thames SC) and Bethan Matthew (Aldeburgh). William Pank, with a fifth and fourth, was best of the host club.

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Marion Bown won the first two races on Hickling Broad before wind and weather started playing up, producing a flat calm, then a 180-degree shift, and finally torrential rain for the last race, deterring all but a few hardy souls.

Hickling hosted the Athene Cup for the first time, drawing 10 Punts for two races, the first to Potter and back.

The wind produced spectacular planing on the broad and testing beats on the river – luckily the hail and storm of biblical proportions came during the lunch break. A calmer afternoon saw a race to Martham and back, notable for a thrilling capsize under spinnaker by Rupert Reddington well within sight of the clubhouse. Geoff and Alex Tibbenham won both races and the Cup.

Northern Rivers sailed their Globe Trophy on Saturday between Breydon and Acle Bridge in squally conditions.

Fortunately the course was mainly reaching, although several boats touched the bottom and one, sailed by Bob Jarvey, had to crane out after hitting something more solid and springing a leak. Peter Coleman and Maggie Lomax coped best, furling their genoa in the strongest gusts, and emerged clear winners with five minutes to spare over Nigel Wordingham, while Clive Wright managed third, despite resting on several mud banks!

Sunday's race for the Harvest Bowl was drier and calmer, and with a course from Oby Dyke along the Thurne and up the Bure in any order. Wordingham alone opted to do the Thurne mark first. It was an inspired choice as he avoided tacking, winning while Alan Winters beat Coleman by 11 seconds for second spot.

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