2009 News

Programme for 2010

I have now filled in the Events Calender to the left, but for those of you who
would rather see it in list form - here it is:

  • 2 - 4th April - Red Funnel Easter Regatta
17 - 18th April - Warsash QT Spring Championship
28 April - 1 May - Obelix Trophy, Benodet, France
14 - 16th May - Vice Admiral's Cup

  • 29th - 31 May Poole Regatta
5 - 6th June - ISC QT Training Regatta

  • 14 - 16th Coutts Quarter Ton Cup
19th June - Round the Island Race

  • 25 - 27th June - IRC Championships
31 July - 7 August - Cowes Week
3 - 5 September - Brewin Dolphin Jersey Regatta

September - Runaway Bus Trophy (Nab Tower and Tiny Mitchell Trophy)
 Battle of Britain Regatta

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Racing as it should be

But more pork pies required!

We have travelled to Cowes for many years competing in events such as Fastnets’, Commodores Cups’ and UK IRC championships but our visit earlier in July this year beats them all hands down!

The Coutts Quarter Ton Cup offered three days of tight racing on windward leeward courses in the central Solent. Two Royal Cork Yacht Club Irish entries, Eamonn Rohans’ ‘Anchor Challenge’ and Neil Keneficks ‘Tiger’, joined an international fleet of 30 other quarter tonners to compete for the annual trophy.

Shortly after we arrived into Cowes two things became very apparent. The first was the welcome and sense of camaraderie which exists between boat owners and crews in this class. Crews actively mixed among each other, in some cases people renewing old acquaintances and in other cases people introducing themselves for the first time. Nowhere was this more apparent than on the first day when competitors remained on the dock for a few hours waiting for the breeze to fill in. This class is a club in the truest sense of the word and it was great to meet so many old and new faces over the course of the event.

It also quickly became evident the boats at this event mean business. The allure of this class is simply amazing, it attracting some of the best and most accomplished sailors in the Solent area and from abroad. Olympic medallists and coaches along with champions from many classes littered the dock all aiming to win the Quarter ton cup in this competitive, yet fun class.

The three days racing as expected proved super competitive over the tight windward leeward courses. While the racing in this class is under IRC it quickly became apparent that a more one design approach needs to be taken particularly as the top boats rate and perform so evenly. Seconds separated the boats throughout the three days racing both on the water and on corrected time. Despite this being the case no protests were heard - infringers instead adhering to the class secretary’s strict instructions to “keep it clean and do your turns”

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Runaway Bus Trophy

So near, but yet so far.....

Thank you for a very good turn out for the class, congratulations to everyone not just the winners. Some of us have to make up the numbers with the objectives of improvement. Whiskers was great and will help us to keep on pushing.

Morty you old lazy bug, we saw this coming for 2 weeks and still had to try. Poor old Rablo crew missed ferry from Southampton due to a medical emergency ambulance coming in and though early were still left in Southampton as they sent the ferry out early. Got into bed 0130 and out again 0545. Navigator error on start due to line !!!( no problem in my book as the instructions were clear) missed the Nab by 0.25 nm. wind died and spent 3 hrs motoring home. Ho, Ho would not have missed it. Could not do Tiny Cup due to kids and had to get back Sunday to mainland.

Great time, was thinking of going back to class 6, nah. Will look forward to racing with you next year as you are Still Crazy and so are we. From all my crew and me we are very grateful for a good years sailing though the wind has been a bit light. Your efforts are very much appreciated and that is why we will see you for more fun and adventure next year.

We are a bit strange but we do love our racing (frustrating at the back) and now the kids are getting bigger (Jet is 3 today) we might remember how to do it and get the boat up to speed (sink it and get a new one).

Simon Wheeler and Crew - Rablo

Runaway Bus Trophy
Great to see so many boats out for the Nab Tower/Tiny Mitchell double which forms the Runaway Bus Trophy this weekend. Surprise appearance from Purple Haze (nice to see you) and welcome especially to Southy and his Hamble crew for their first QT regatta on the old Snoopy, now called Whiskers. Whiskers was lovingly put together and ready to race this weekend by Led Pritchard and it was absolutely brilliant to see him beaming with shear delight after his first sail in 54 weeks, as a result of a nasty sailing accident in Sardinia last September.  It was a light, no very light weekend wind wise and Morty decided not to even get out of bed on the Saturday it looked so dire. However 8 other QT's showed a bit more mettle and turned up on the start line mixing it with 50 or so other IRC boats. With the second biggest tide of the year, it was not a race to be over the line for, and indeed everyone was was very line shy (exactly where is the ISC line anyway??). Not far short of sailing round the island, the Nab Tower can be an epic.  4 hours, it took us to reach it, and Southy went round first ahead of many bigger boats including J109s, Elans 40's, Corby 45's etc.

Espada second, Bullet and Menace followed by Runaway Bus.  1st QT on handicap by a considerable lead (just where did they go - we couldn't see them...) was Whiskers, Menace 2nd, Bullet 3rd. Tiny Mitchell. A bit more wind when we woke up, enough for Anchor Challenge to get moving, but in the end a very dreary light airs race.  Anchor Challenge and Whiskers had a battle at the front of the fleet followed by Espada, Bullet and Menace miles behind, although Bullet and Espada eventually retired, as did Purple Haze (did we spot Poldark on board?). Anchor Challenge won, by 11 seconds from Whiskers and Menace 3rd.  The Runaway Bus Trophy goes to Whiskers for a very credible win on their first weekend outing.  Congratulations guys (and Cat). 

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Fitting Out Dinner

The Quarter Ton tradition of having lots of fun and rum continued on Saturday night at the Fitting Out Supper attended by 11 boats and their crews. 37 people sat down to dinner with the guest of honour Brian Thompson who has recently returned from the Vendee Globe race where he finished 5th.

The Runaway Bus Trophy for 2008 was presented by Paul Kelsey to Peter Morton on behalf of Paul Treliving (Poldark) who was unable to attend at the last moment, who with a 2nd and a 1st beat Bullet who had a 1st and a 2nd in the Nab Tower and Tiny Mitchell Trophy events.

Also attending was Jules Salter who as navigator on Ericsson 4 in the Volvo Race had only just returned that day from Rio for 4 days r&r back in the UK and who was keen to party with his mates.

The - what is now becoming traditional - Mount Gay Award was presented to two people - Mike Till who having just reached his 70th birthday this year has won the Legend class in a Finn event in Cannes, just done the Etchells Worlds and who still does foredeck on his Quarter Tonner.

The second bottle of Mount Gay was presented to Morty who having spent two years negotiating with the Spanish Navy to purchase two 1990 quarter tonners finally got to  collect them.  He towed a flat bed trailer to Vigo in North Spain without stopping, spent the day packing up the boats, and left the following morning for the 10 hour trip to Bilboa to catch the ferry back to Portsmouth. 2 1/2 hours after leaving Vigo, towing one of the two boats, the engine on his car blew up and the car and the boat on the trailer had to be retrieved on a bank holiday Thursday in Spain at vast expense as he didnt have roadside assistance cover. 

The condition of this prize is that the tops have to taken off and thrown away.......

It certainly makes for a good party.   Lots of stories were told, Brian did an excellent job in telling us all how he got round the World and everyone had a good time.

The Class would like to give a warm welcome to Rob Gray who has bought one of the Spanish boats, and Olly Ophaus has bought the other - this being his second quarter tonner, the first - Supernova, he sold to Ireland at the end of last year.

Also new to the Class is Mike Pascall who has bought Pandamonium from Greece but changed to the name to Illegal Immigrant on account of the fact that they found one on board on arrival in Dover having towed the boat back from Southern Italy.

Dashing Darren
At the QT dinner we were very surprised to see that Olly Ophaus who has just bought his second QT - the Pepe Gonzalez Spanish QT - turned up with Darren Marston who was the previous owner of Catch. Rumours ran amok that evening and it transpired after dinner and several bottles of rum that Darren is considering a comeback.  Despite Darren becoming a semi pro on the new multi million Judel Vrolik 60, deep down he knows that the competition and up and coming class is the Quarter Tonners!

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Jersey to Guernsey Race

There is an annual race from Jersey to Guernsey which always produces a battle between the Channel Islands.  This year, the top IRC overall prize went to Tom Bombadil now owned by Dave Williams in Jersey.  I can only imagine a good night out in Guernsey was had by all.

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