Rubicon (Jersey) Channel Islands Hobie Cat Championships
Calm conditions greeted the Hobie crews on the first day of the Championships organised by the Royal Channel Islands Yacht Club, unfortunately these unusual conditions lasted for most of the day, with no racing taking place for the teams who had been eagerly waiting to launch off the Gunsite beach and sail to the race course in St. Aubins bay.
Sunday's bright and breezy conditions made all the difference providing virtually perfect cat sailing for the three Hobie classes competing in the event, Hobie Tigers and Wildcats, Hobie 16's and the Junior Hobie Dragoons.
Hobie 16 'A' Fleet Class
This class enjoyed the highest turnout and proved to be something of a battle between Gordon Burgis and crew Kenny Snell and Youth team Tom Newman and Bart Wijsmuller. Newman fresh from the recent Hobie Worlds at Lake Garda showed how much he has improved with Wijsmuller on the Hobie 16's this year after graduating from the Junior Dragoons. They were quick off the starting line in every race, gaining a very close first place by no more than 6 inches in length from Burgis and Snell in race two, but it was the veteran team that carried the day with good tactics and boat speed, 3 firsts gave them the coveted Hobie 16 Trophy for the 10th time since its inception in 1991. Newman and Wijsmuller came a well deserved second. Grant Neale and Karen Larose improved in the latter races after mid finishes in the first two, their second and third giving them a third overall by one point over the consistent and experienced South African helm Stuart Mc Cue sailing with rookie crew Sandra Moss placing fourth.
Hobie 16 'B' Fleet Class
There was close racing at the top end of the Fleet between the brother team Russell and Darren Boschat and Harry Smith crewed by David Elgie, both teams were neck and equal on points right up to the last race. The Boschat brothers came out on top after Smith and Elgies early exit from the last race put them in second. Polish sailors Marek Grzadziel and Mike Dudek are fast improving and sailed well considering a lack of experience on Hobie 16's to come third.
Hobie Tiger & Wildcat Combined
Last year's winners Benn Garnham and Jamie Hamilton from Guernsey once again set the pace on their 18ft Hobie Tiger, winning all 4 races in the combined Hobie 18's event. The Sarnian crews teamwork around the boat and fast spi hoists and drops made the difference in the short course fast racing. Darren Stower and Graeme Monks racing Wildcat sailed into the lead at times but couldn't sustain the position and had to settle for a close second. There was also strong competition for third place between Adrian Jesson and Paul Martins Wildcat and Rob Moy and Mick Doleman racing a Tiger, both ended up on an equal 15 points at the end of racing with Jesson and Martin just edging it on countback to take the third spot.
Junior Hobie Dragoon Class
Racing was close and competitive in the Junior Dragoons. Ollie Voak and Megan Newstead dominated the racing with three firsts and a second place cementing a deserving win in the class. The Sister team, Chloe and Elsa Swetenham were mixing it with Voak and Newstead as front runners and performed well after some decent starts to come second. Leo Marshall and Gemma Newman's win in the final race helped them into third place after consistently placing third in the other races.
The Prize Giving presentation was held at the RCIYC on Sunday evening where thanks were given to the Race team, safety boat and mark laying crews, the Beach team also to Rubicon (Jersey) for their valued sponsorship of a highly successful event.
Hobie 16 'A' Fleet Class (top 6)
1st Gordon Burgis & Kenny Snell
2nd Tom Newman & Bart Wijsmuller
3rd Grant Neale and Karen Larose
4th Stuart Mc Cue & Sandra Moss
5th Aaron Le Cornu & Paul Haylev
6th Luc Richard & Ania Baraniak
Hobie 16 'B' Fleet
1st Russell Boschat & Darren Boschat
2nd Harry Smith & David Elgie
3rd Marek Grzadziel & Mike Dudek
Hobie Tiger & Wildcat Combined
1st Benn Garnham & Jamie Hamilton
2nd Darren Stower & Graeme Monks
3rd Adrian Jesson & Paul Martin
4th Rob Moy & Mick Doleman
5th James Fullerton & Perry Stone
Junior Hobie Dragoons
1st Ollie Voak & Megan Newstead
2nd Chloe & Elsa Swetenham
3rd Leo Marshall & Gemma Newman
1st Hobie 16 Masters
Gordon Burgis and Ken Snell
1st Hobie 16 Women's
Rachael Morris & Sam Flambard
1st Hobie 16 Youth
Tom Newman & Bart Wijsmuller