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Fat Face RS Eurocup La Societe des Regates Rochelaises, La Rochelle, France

  • RS700 Nationals Plymouth 2014
  • RS700 Eurocup, YC Carnac, May 2018
  • RS700 Eurocup, YC Carnac, May 2018
La Rochelle hoisted the Fat Face RS700 Euro cup event 25-29th of July. With a strong 32 boat fleet coming across Europe. It was set to turn out to be a exciting championship. The event was held over five days with 2 races a day. The day before the event the class association arranged some training for all RS700 competitors. It was run by asymmetric guru Pete Greenhalge. The aim is to help the new comers to the fleet and people at all standards with support and help and encouragement to improve. A practice race was then held and Pete did a video Debrief from the days actions. Followed then by a Class dinner in the evening at the sailing club then a tour of La Rochelle night life, which was enjoyed by every body and it made feel a very close and friendly fleet. The practice race got under way, the clouds cleared to reveal sunshine with 20 knots of breeze with a rolling sea. The race got under way promptly at 16.30pm. The majority of the fleet started at the committee boat end and got away cleanly. Pete Greenhalge one of the race favourites was well in the second row and tacked off right, within the first one hundred meters. Jerry Wales also followed and went hard right Steve butcher went hard left. With the roaring tide there was obviously going to be a favoured side. The windward mark was over a mile away, with the majority of the fleet going left, Greenhalge crossed them with a comfortable lead followed by Wales. Greenhalge never looked back and extended his lead to win. Showing that his hard work training over the summer is paying off. With his exceptional boat handling Wales came 2nd. Butcher sailed a solid race and was third followed by a tussle between Dave Cummings and John Heissig with Cummings crossing the line first. Race 1 started in a sunny force 3 and the fleet got away first time. Steve Butcher chose a mid line start avoiding the bunch at the favoured Committee boat end and powered away to lead round the first mark followed closely by Dave Geal. Pete Greenhalgh found himself buried at the start but quickly tacked off right to find clear air and started working his way back into contention Steve Butcher took the line Followed by Greenhalge and Cummings. The wind dropped slightly to a force 2 for the second race and this time it was Tim Dickinson who led away from the busy Committee boat end and worked his way up the middle of the beat. Pete Greenhalgh again went right in clear air to follow closely round the windward mark. The RS200 fleet arrived at the mark at the same time and in the confusion Pete went high whilst Tim tried to soak through to leeward which allowed Pete to take a lead which was never challenged. Further back in the fleet Nigel Walbank managed to sail clear of the RS200 fleet and went left on the run pulling up to 3rd by the first leeward mark. He maintained this position throughout the race before finding a little extra boat speed on the last beat to work through to 2nd with Dave Gorridge taking the final position. Day 2 saw a hot and sultry Day of the RS700 Fat Face Euro cup saw the fleet becalmed, the Jellyfish rising in numbers and cloths flying off as the fleet tried to amuse themselves when the Race Officer had to postpone for a couple of hours. Top marks must go to John Lilley for his somersaults from the wings which kept everyone amused. Eventually a light breeze established itself and allowed racing to commence. Angus Chisholm obviously benefited from a quiet romantic evening in with his girlfriend as he totally dominated the days racing. In race 1 he started from the Committee boat end, and worked the shifts up the left side of the beat to lead at the first mark, a lead which he never lost. John Heissig sailed a good race only to find he was OCS which promoted Eddie Gatehouse to 2nd and Pete Greenhalgh filled out the top 3. The second race saw Angus again win the start but this time with a port end flier. He proceeded to bang the right hand corner to again lead around the windward mark. This tie he didn't have things all his own way as a technical hitch (note to Angus - must learn to tie better knots on the pump handle) allowed Tim Dickinson through to take the lead. Tim chose to go hard left, whilst Angus banged right again and benefited from some opportunistic surfing as the committee boat relocated to the windward mark to shorten the course which popped Angus back into the lead with Tim taking second. Mark Pollington sailed an excellent and conservative race to pull through to 3rd at the finish. Everyone was more than happy to see the shortened course flag as it had been a long hard day, particularly for the many jellyfish who were increasingly proving to be a major obstacle. Day three of the Rs700 Fat Face Euro cup event was a day of broken promises. The overnight thunderstorms and forecast of force 3/4 winds with up to 30 knot gusts created expectations of more boisterous conditions than had been experienced so far, which lead to some anticipation and excitement on the shore. Once out there the gradient wind was fighting against the sea breeze which almost counted out any wind. A light sea breeze developed and race Five got under way. Race 5. The first race started with the pin the favoured end. However, it was the boats that needed to clear their air that tacked off to the right that picked up the early shift. Nigel Wallbank took the lead with Tim Dickenson very closely followed by Dave Cumming. Pete Greenhalge was suffering up the first beat but then sailed well, to claim a couple more places down wind while Cumming and Wales slipped. Wallbank managed to hold his lead right up until the final gybe of the shortened course when Dickinson just managed to ease past for a well fought victory. Dickenson and Wallbank sailed a solid race in the difficult winds getting 1st and 2nd While Greenhalge took a very well respected 3rd. Race 6. Saw much of the same no more than 8- 10 knots. The gun went. In the first 100 yards the wind flicked right, which favoured the middle of the course. Which Greenhalge and Heissig took full advantage. Greenhalge only just took the lead away from Hissing around the top mark as apparently he collided with a big jelly fish which stopped him dead. The rest of the fleet followed and came together. Cummings was 3rd after Heissig regained control then followed by Dickenson and Steve Butcher then Jerry Wales and Lee Albrecht all within a boat length of each other. The fleet kept very close in that order until the down wind leg of the 2nd lap. When a group of boats including Albreight had taken the right side down the run and had closed right up by the bottom mark. Albreight rounded the mark 2nd in front of a tightly packed bunch but was soon overtaken by Wales who was to hold onto 2nd place to the finish, with Albreight 3rd. Greenhalge never looked back and was in control of the whole race and won with a convincing lead. Generally it was difficult to put together consistent results in the difficult conditions, with the exception of Peter Greenhalge that has now sealed the series with two 1st places. Behind Greenhalge, Nigel Walbank and Tim Dickinson followed up with a 2nd and 3rd in the seventh race. In race eight, Ian Mitchell lead the fleet off the line with an audacious port tack start and lead from the top mark until Greenhalge reeled him in on the 2nd downwind leg. Mitchell kept his cool to finish 3rd with Griff Tanner new comer to the fleet putting in a solid race to finish up in 2nd place. The forecast for the final day was for similar light and difficult conditions, There was a postponement for the first hour as the sea breeze of 10-12 knots and blue sky's to finish the last day. Race 9 got under way, It was another close race and places where changing often, Dave Cummings took line honours followed by Tim Dickenson closely followed by Dave geal. The wind Kept up and sun kept shining the last race got underway John Hessig enjoyed the conditions and took line honours in front of Mark Pollington and well sailed Tim Dickinson. Thanks to Fat Face who where the main sponsor of the event and La Rochelle sailing club for hoisting the event everybody had a great time and proved that the racing is closer than ever, with six different race leaders and different people in the top 5 daily. A big congratulations goes to Pete Greenhalge. On this performance Greenhalgh has put himself in amongst the favourites for the RS700 Nationals, being held at Abersoch at end of next month.
1 GBR 849 GREENNALCH Peter 17.00 83.00 2 1 3 5 3 1 1 1 DNF DNF 2 GBR 9031 DICKINSON Timothy 29.00 80.00 5 5 8 2 1 18 3 BFD 2 3 3 GBR 9441 CUMMINS David 40.00 88.00 3 4 10 15 5 5 4 8 1 DNF 4 GBR 832 GEAL Dave 52.00 86.00 4 7 11 4 20 14 13 5 3 5 5 GBR 775 WALBANK Nigel 54.00 93.00 8 2 19 9 2 20 2 16 11 4 6 GBR 888 WALES Jerry 54.00 79.00 7 11 12 6 4 2 6 13 7 11 7 GBR 891 BUTCHER Stephen 55.00 81.00 1 6 5 7 14 12 11 10 9 6 8 GBR 882 HEISSIG Jonathan 58.00 124.00 6 3 OCS 19 6 4 7 BFD 12 1 9 GBR 787 CHILSHOLM Angus 59.00 96.00 19 18 1 1 9 6 5 7 18 12 10 GBR 776 TANNER Griff 65.00 131.00 16 9 4 10 7 9 8 2 DNF DNF 11 GBR 861 GATEHOUSE Eddie 68.00 110.00 11 8 2 23 18 19 10 6 5 8 12 GBR 769 POLLINGTON Mark 69.00 102.00 17 10 9 3 8 7 15 15 16 2 13 GBR 939 ALBRECHT Leigh 81.00 116.00 12 14 14 18 16 3 9 17 6 7 14 GBR 766 KOUKOURAKIS Alex 81.00 130.00 9 12 7 14 11 16 16 4 8 DNF 15 GBR 806 GRIFFIN Nicky 83.00 117.00 13 13 6 11 10 17 12 9 17 9 16 GBR 902 GORRIWGE David 109.00 146.00 18 19 17 17 15 11 17 11 4 17 17 GBR 840 AZZOPARDI Daniel 110.00 150.00 14 16 20 16 13 8 19 20 14 10 18 GBR 936 MITCHELL Ian 125.00 191.00 DSQ 22 13 8 17 15 14 3 DNF DNF 19 GBR 912 NOLAN Ian 128.00 170.00 21 21 21 13 19 13 20 14 15 13 20 GBR 880 JARY Peter 133.00 185.00 15 15 16 27 12 25 21 19 19 16 21 GBR 741 MC NULTY Ned 146.00 199.00 22 17 15 28 25 23 23 21 10 15 22 FRA 928 FRABOULET Cedric 152.00 203.00 26 20 18 25 22 22 18 12 21 19 Y C CARNAC 23 GBR 777 SPEER Stewart 167.00 222.00 25 23 25 24 26 29 25 18 13 14 24 FRA 794 GRAS Gilles 173.00 239.00 24 26 DSQ DSQ 27 10 24 24 20 18 CNCM 25 GBR 896 LEESON Robert 183.00 238.00 27 24 24 20 23 24 28 26 22 20 26 FRA 895 MAILLARD Francois 196.00 262.00 DNC DNC 27 12 28 21 27 25 23 DNF C.V.M.L 27 GBR 868 CONNER Matthew 205.00 271.00 23 25 22 26 24 26 26 BFD DNF DNF 28 GBR 934 STARK Matthew 214.00 280.00 20 27 DSQ 22 29 27 DNF 23 DNF DNF 29 GBR 940 SMITH Howard 214.00 280.00 28 DNC 23 21 21 DNF 22 DNC DNF DNF 30 GBR 893 LILLEY Richard 230.00 296.00 10 DNC OCS DNF DNF DNF DNF 22 DNF DNF 31 LUX 734 FRIEDRICK Andre 240.00 306.00 DNC 28 26 29 30 28 DNF DNC DNF DNF 32--- NED 8641 TEN BERG Mathys 264.00 330.00 DNC DNC DSQ DSQ DNF DNF DNF DNC DNF DNF
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