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Heron Southern Championships 2017



With the forecast for no wind and more no wind, 28 degree heat and it being Father’s day the conditions were not looking ideal.

Factoring in the above, there was a low turn-out 7 competitors, 6 from Chipstead and one visitor from Up River Yacht Club. The event was joined up with a Graduate Open so the water did feel full.

In the end, there were some very light changeable winds and the whole lake could only be used for the first race and a short course for the second and third race.

The wind picked up to a lovely Westerly 10 minutes before the start and the competitors were charging up and down the line. Once the 5 minute signal was sounded the wind completely disappeared and it was a slow crawl to cross the line. All competitors started together with the boats closely together. On lap two Jon Hunt Heron number 7 and Matt Pickett (SH) pulled out into the lead. The course was shortened to end on a windward mark and the front boats lost their wind. Fortunately for the boats behind a lovely breeze picked up behind them which resulted in the front 5 boats all ending the first race within a boat length of each other. Newcomer Sean Chapman Heron 10339 (SH) came up from the back of the fleet to finish in number 2 position in the first race. However, once the handicap was applied the results were:

Race 1:

L Dutton Heron H9338 (1st)

J Hunt H 7 (2nd)

J Russ H10089 (3rd)

M Pickett H9812 (4th)

S Chapman H10339 (5th)

M Hawksworth H9851 (6th)

R Goldsmith H8432 (7th)

Following lunch provided by the caterers at the sailing club the course was shortened to one end of the lake once most of the light breeze had disappeared. The race officer was planning to run two short back to back races, but in the end there was a short break for those at the front of the fleet while those near the back had to remain out for the last two races in the strong sunshine.

Sailing with a full size genoa was a definite advantage in the light winds and Matt Pickett made huge strides in the 2nd race, pulling a long way in front of J Hunt No.7 and L Dutton H 9338. The final scores were

Race 2:

M Pickett H9812 (1st)

J Hunt H 7 (2nd)

L Dutton Heron H9338 (3rd)

J Russ H10089 (4th)

R Goldsmith H8432 (5th)

M Hawksworth H9851 (6th)

S Chapman H10339 (RTD)

Race 3 was equally slow with very light or no winds but with all boats remaining quite close together with a shortened course flag raised half-way around the course, only one lap was sailed. M Pickett pulled away from the fleet and it was very close on the finish line with J Hunt, L Dutton and J Russ all at the finish line at the same time.

Race 3:

M Pickett H9812 (1st)

J Hunt H 7 (2nd)

L Dutton Heron H9338 (3rd)

J Russ H10089 (4th)

M Hawksworth H9851 (5th)

R Goldsmith H8432 (6th)

A time handicap was used by the race officer for the Single Handicap and the crewed herons.

Jon Hunt as chairman of the Heron Dinghy Class Association presented the trophies and prizes. A special prize was awarded to Robert Goldsmith who despite not sailing for a year and dare we say being a veteran of the class participated in all three races.


Matthew Picket S/H 10033 Up River 1St Place

L Dutton & S Pratt Heron 9338 Chipstead SC 2nd Place

J Hunt & V Hunt H 7 Chipstead SC 3rd Place

J Russ & S Wooff 10089 Chipstead SC 4th Place

M Hawksworth & G Goldsmith 9581 Chipstead SC 5th Place

R Goldsmithg & K Goldsmith 8432 Chipstead SC 6th Place

S Chapman S/H 10339 Chipstead SC 7th Place


Bell Trophy: Overall Winner Matt Pickett

Alfred Bossi Trophy: Winner of First Race Leslie Dutton

Marlow Salver: Winner of Second Race Matt Pickett

Croydon Anchor: Winner of Third Race Matt Pickett

Elise Stern Salver: First Chipstead Boat Leslie Dutton

Report compiled by James Russ H10089, Chipstead Class Captain and Webmaster for the HDCA.

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