Police Sport UK -
National Dinghy Sailing Championships



Tuesday, 9th June, 2009

With a forecast of F3, conditions were in fact, fairly breezy for the start of the regatta's first day - the Laser Championship. Nevertheless all 14 boats sailed with  a full rig.

With the threat of a 'windward/leeward' course disposed of, the Race Officer Dave Nichols set up a simple triangle for the first race.

For the first race, just thirteen boats got away whilst Graham Cook (Met) remained on the shore attending to various repairs to the rear end of his ancient Laser. Meanwhile, on the Start Line there was pressure at the port end culminating in Rob Jones (Hampshire) forced to re-round the pin before making his way up through the fleet. Paul Heath (Greater Manchester) had got away well to lead the fleet throughout the race pursued by Ian Ingram (West Midlands) and Simon Hawkes (Avon & Somerset). By the end of the race Heath had an extensive lead with Jones, having made his way through the fleet, gaining second place with Ingram third.

After lunch, Race Two; a 'triangle/sausage'. The wind held fairly well but the sea became lumpy; not the best conditions for Lasers. This time all 14 boats started and Cook soon found himself in the lead with Ingram, Jones and Heath in hot pursuit. This time the tide was having an influence and positions were in doubt until the end when Cook crossed the line with Jones second again and Ingram third. After Race Two, the points situation indicated that the Laser Championship would be decided between Cook, Heath and Jones.

Race Three was sailed 'back to back' with the wind fairly strong for the start but as the race continued the wind fell lighter and the tide became the major influence. During the race the fleet spread out on the beats as some decided on keeping to the centre of the course whilst other opted for a path nearer the shore. Meanwhile the wind was dropping further. Jones had been leading during the race and the choices of tacking and route taken would become crucial. By the end, Cook had scored another win with Ingram second and Heath third with other major competitors, Hawkes, fourth whilst Jones, who had gone inshore to get out of the tide, then found a hole in the wind, ended up a disappointing sixth.

The regatta had been highly competitive amongst the top sailors; one can only wonder at the skill required, not only to sail the winning boat, but to keep it in one piece..


Click Here to view Laser Results


Click Here to View

Pictures from the Laser Event


Stuart Jenkins and Deputy Organiser, Roger Glass
prepare the PSUK flag for flying.

Netley Sailing Club Commodore, Mike Stroud and
Race Officer, Dave Nichols ran the Committee Boat.


Police Sport UK
Dinghy Sailing Championships, 2009....
Wednesday/Thursday, 10-11th June, 2009

For the second year running, 27 boats took part in this year's championship held in perfect conditions - Not too calm, not too windy. The racing amongst the the main contenders was close and albeit the boats varied from an RS700 to a Europe, there was plenty of competitive spirit throughout the fleet. With a view to making race results easily adjustable to laps completed, the Race Officer set triangular courses for the five races.

Day One of the Dinghy Championship dawned damp and grey. All 27 boats made the start for Race One. Boats got away well enough despite two boats caught being over the line at the start. One returned but Nick Hunt/Paul Heath - a promising combination for the championship in their RS400 - failed to re-start and ended their race with a discard. As the wind blew, there were a few capsizes and the odd gear failure, particularly disappointing for Ken Daniels with a brand new Phantom - never been in the water - who found every surface of the boat so slippery, including the ropes that he ended up with the centreboard pointing towards the sky, was forced to retire early and find another burgee to top his mast. The tight, first reach provided excellent planing conditions with the opportunity for non-spinnaker boats to show their paces over the asymmetrics, though this made for a very broad reach/almost a run on the third leg of the triangle. The fastest boat - Hampshire's Rob Jones in an RS700 - needed to make good time against its PY rating and managed six laps before the race ended. Last year's champions Frances Gifford & Pete Walker using a Merlin Rocket  finished behind with some 9 minutes elapsing, but on corrected time finished second. The Phantoms were happy in the conditions with Simon Hawkes (Avon & Somerset) winning the race by almost a minute on corrected time; Alistair Glen's Phantom (Met) finishing a very respectable third just three seconds behind the Merlin. Jones was fourth. Newcomers to the championships, Elizabeth Addison/Tim Douglas (Northumbria) with their 59er were fifth and the Notts RS400 of Pete Walters with new crew Lindsay Ogden came sixth. Then the first Laser, Steve Brisley (Cleveland).

After lunch, Races Two & Three were held back-to-back. The wind, which had been so lively in the morning, decided to settle somewhat and as the general traffic of the deep-water channel sent waves across the course, the shorter length boats were bound to suffer whereas the faster dinghies were able to carve their way through the lumpy conditions. With less wind, just five laps were accomplished by the faster boats in this hour-long race with all 27 boats finishing. Hawkes recorded his second win and Gifford her second, second place. Graham Cook (Met) with Moira Stretton in an RS200 recorded their best result of the regatta, third.

Race Three and after a delay re-positioning the course buoys as the wind veered, the fleet were away once more. This time Rob Jones was able to carve his way through the conditions to record his only win beating Gifford (second again..) by well over three minutes on corrected time. Nick Hunt with the combined Cleveland/Met boat also had his best result coming an excellent third. Hawkes, not so good this time, came fourth. So ended the first day.

Day Two and conditions were bright and breezy first thing but the wind never really rose as forecast. Nevertheless, conditions were excellent with good winds to start in bright sunshine. The two races were sailed back-to-back.

Race Four. A bit of a muddled start as the line appeared to give a slight advantage to the pin end. The wind direction had changed from the previous day to a northerly and in order to maintain the anti-clockwise triangle ,the wing mark was placed very near to the deep-water channel. Thus a fairly long beat created a broad reach to the gybe mark and virtually a run to the leeward mark. A good wind with some little gusts caught out the odd boat including some gear failures. Pete Walters capsized, took time nursing an injured shoulder and needed help from his crew to get the boat upright again resulting in his discard. Mike Scrivener (Sussex) found trouble aboard his Contender and had to retire. With these different conditions there was a complete change to finishing places. Frances Gifford got her first place at last, with Alistair Glen second on corrected time. Rob Jones was third and Simon Hawkes fourth again.

Race Five and there was a delay whilst the buoys were re-positioned.  The overall points position indicated that there were basically four helms in a position to take the championship: final race positions would be crucial. During the count-down the wind direction altered, forcing the Race Officer to stop the sequence. Then, on the next sequence, too many boats ended up over the line causing a second delay before the race eventually got under way. Frustrating for the Committee Boat but while the sun shone the delays were bearable. The course appeared to comprise of a long beat, a short reach and the third leg, a long run. The fleet spread out on the beats as some helms decided on a centre route whilst some boats aimed for a course along the shore hoping to gain from the influence of the rising tide. Halfway through the race the wind changed direction and boats were racing down the third leg on a different tack. By the end of the slightly shorter race, Hawkes was recording his third race-win. Second was Gifford; both boats ending on seven points nett for their four races counting. Third overall was Jones (10 pts) with Glen (12 pts) ending up fourth. The fifth race provided best results for a number of competitors - Roger Glass, getting away well from the start recorded a 6th place and Ken Daniels, after valuable advice overnight from Simon regarding his new Phantom rig, came 7th. Lower down the results, improved places were also recorded by Mark Fordham/John Rolfe (Avon & Somerset), Martyn Dearsley (Northants), Malcolm Dykes/Andy Butler (Avon & Somerset). Jim Shaw (A&S) also had his best race result sailing in the Laser Radial. The fleet just managed to get ashore before the weather changed completely and the heavens opened.

On count-back then, Simon Hawkes is this year's champion, representing Avon & Somerset Police in a Phantom. Congratulations to Simon who, after an absence of a few years from police sailing has returned with a vengeance and renewed enthusiasm..

Prizes were presented by Dick Fedorcio - Director of Public Affairs Metropolitan Police Service who is member of the Metropolitan Police Sailing Club also a past Laser dinghy and current yacht sailor. At the Presentation thanks were given to the large support team that both the Netley and Metropolitan Police sailing clubs provided to ensure the smooth running of the event. The Principal Race Officer was Dave Nicholls who is an RYA Race Officer and serving police officer in Metropolitan Police.


Click Here to view Dinghy Results


Click Here to View

Pictures from the Event

PSUK National Dinghy Sailing Championships
Trophy Winners

Sunderland Trophy 1st Overall Simon Hawkes Avon & Somerset
Police Review Trophy 2nd Overall Frances Gifford/
Pete Walker
Merseyside Trophy 3rd Overall Rob Jones Hampshire
Bala Trophy Winner of First Race Simon Hawkes Avon & Somerset
West Midlands Trophy Winner of Last Race Simon Hawkes Avon & Somerset
Lancon Bell Highest Placed GP14 Not Contested  
Mark Peers Trophy Highest Placed Enterprise Not Contested  
Laser Trophy Highest Placed Laser Ian Ingram West Midlands
Maiden Trophy Highest Overall not having won a National Trophy Bob Trevis Sussex
Spinnaker Trophy Highest Placed spinnaker boat Frances Gifford/
Pete Walker
Asymmetric Trophy Highest Placed asymmetric boat Rob Jones Hampshire
Seagull Trophy First slow handicap boat Richard Sivers Northants
Laurenson-Batten Trophy Highest Single-hander Simon Hawkes Avon & Somerset
Lakeland Trophy Highest Retired officer Ken Daniels Met.
"Spirit of the Event" Trophy awarded for the last  boat which completed all sailed races Jeremy Summers Leics.
Laser Champions Trophy Winner of the PSUK
Laser Championship
Graham Cook Met.
Laser Championship plaque Second place in the PSUK Laser Championship Paul Heath Gtr Manchester


Stuart Jenkins
 or Stuart.Jenkins@met.pnn.police.uk






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Pictures of the event
Pictures of the event

Avon & Somerset organiser for PAA Dinghy Champs, 2002:
Pete Franklyn


    Results in Stats Section....



Results from previous National Dinghy regattas can be viewed in the 'Stats' Section