Written by Carolyn Roberson

Dinghies take to Windermere in May race series

Three dinghy races have taken place on Windermere over the past week in the May Handicap series.   Twelve (12) different classes of dinghy have competed, with Judith Gore currently leading the overall series in her GP 14, crewed by the club’s Commodore Simon McVey.   The GP 14 is a popular sailing dinghy used in racing and cruising. 

Other dinghies in the Royal Windermere Yacht Club’s recent races include Peter Wright’s Hadron H2, Robert Richardson’s RS100 8.4, and Matt Nield’s Phantom – all different, high performance single handers. 

The handicap approach to dinghy racing is proving increasing popular as it encourages boats of different sizes and performance capabilities to enter, knowing they will compete on equal terms. 

In true Windermere style, the weekend’s sailing conditions varied enormously.  The club’s race officer, Steve Bewsher (who sets the courses and monitors each competitor’s performance) commented: “On Saturday, we started with light west-south westerly winds, but suddenly they changed to south easterly. This is not unusual on Windermere where conditions can be unpredictable from minute to minute.”  He continued: “Changing wind conditions such as these keep crews on their toes in looking for the most advantageous course to steer.” 

Conditions on Sunday were different again, according to Matt Nield (the club’s “class captain” for the dinghy fleets), with “a good breeze, very nice and sunny.”

In other racing news in the club this weekend, the results were as follows:

  • 17 footers race on Saturday - won by Tony Rothwell (last year’s Commodore), hot on the heels of his success last weekend; his sister Pippa Coleman crewed.   
  • Flying Fifteens race on Saturday – won by Phil Snewin, crewed by Ros Coleman.