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Event reports

Frensham Pond SC RS Tera Open 2022

Frensham Pond Sailing Club
Simon Lomas-Clarke

28 September 2022

Frensham Pond Sailing Club welcomed the largest ever Tera fleet for its RS Tera open on Saturday 24th September. Visitors were treated to a sailing extravaganza with Frensham at its best. Sunny, with the perfect wind direction providing only moderate shifts.

As an event pitched towards sailors doing their first open meeting the conditions were ideal, although some of the coastal sailors disagreed with the small shift assessment!

Race Officer Richard Moore set a decent first beat despite the wind direction limiting the runway available. In the first race the Pro fleet were all too keen to get away at the pin end resulting in a general recall. Despite the threat of a black flag at the briefing Richard must have forgotten to put it in his flag box as the second start sequence proceeded under the Blue Peter and thankfully the fleet were better behaved on the second attempt. Taking advantage of local knowledge, three Frensham boats started to gap the rest of the fleet. As the race progressed, Oliver Stratton-Brown’s sizeable lead over his brother William was eaten up, and the match racing up the beat, in true brotherly-love style, was great to watch. William rounded the last mark in the lead but Oliver covered tighter than a wetsuit not worn for a few months. Despite this, William sneaked in for the win. The local lockout of the top three was completed by Mark Soars.

The Sport fleet also decided the pin was the end to start and there was close competition for the best position. Despite hitting the pesky pin Zoe Lomas-Clarke impressively worked her way up the fleet to second by the end of the race. Ollie Wilson from Sutton Bingham was pressed hard, but led the race to take the win. George Garner, representing the next generation of the Frensham Tera Squad, came home third.

In the Pro fleet’s second race Oliver decided to show his younger brother how things are done and took a convincing victory. In the Sport fleet Ben Angel (Draycote SC) built up a big lead but learned that it ain’t over ‘til it’s over at Frensham, and fell into a wind hole letting Aedan Hadaway from Warsash past on the last lap to take the victory. Local sailor Bailey Angus who is starting to post some great results on the water came in third.

After tucking into the legendary lunch, the sailors had a quick turn-around for race 3. Oliver again took a convincing win after owning the prime spot next to the committee boat on the start and doing a horizon job on the rest of the fleet. Local sailor Tristan Harding took second place. In the Sport fleet Zoe Lomas-Clarke got into sync with the shifts and took the victory from HISC’s Callum Aldridge and another third from Bailey.

The Pro result had been decided before the start of the last race and Oliver took a laid-back approach to the final race (literally). This opened the door for William to win the final race from long-time leader Mark Soars with William Bradley, finally coming to terms with the shifty conditions to take third. Overall, Frensham delivered a lock-out on the Pro prizes with Oliver Stratton-Brown in first, brother William second, Mark Soars third, and Tristan Harding fourth.

In the Sport fleet the wind swung in the start sequence to favour the pin and at least 3 boats managed to port tack the fleet. Local boys George Garner and Bailey Angus rounded the windward mark in the lead followed by other front fleet regulars. Zoe Lomas-Clarke picked off the boats in front of her on the way to a big lead, which she held to the end to win the event in style. Throughout the fleet, sailors’ patience was tested as the wind decided to take a rest during the race before picking up again at the end. Despite this pause in proceedings, Ben Angel took second with Bailey Angus scoring his third third of the day. The big fleet of visitors, many from coastal clubs, did extremely well in the unfamiliar setting, so the locals didn’t have it all their way in the final Sport fleet results. Zoe’s victory in the last race gave her the overall victory and kept the Frensham flag flying but Ben Angel (Draycote SC) was second and Ollie Wilson (Sutton Bingham SC) completed the podium.

At the prize giving Fleet Captain Richard Harding handed out a mountain of prizes and a lot of chocolate to an array of competitors, including everyone competing in their first open. It was fantastic to see that the largest visiting club was Warsash SC, who have only started to build their fleet this year.

Next and last event on the Southern region Tera-go-round is Emsworth SC on Saturday 8th October.


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