UK 18ft Skiff Grand Prix – Round 2 at Calshot Activity Centre

Pica - Round 2, Day 1, UK 18ft Skiff Grand Prix 2012
Declan O'Riordan & Eddie Aldridge
UK 18ft Skiff Grand Prix second round is being held at Calshot Activity Centre over the bank holiday weekend (5-7 May). Eight skiff teams entered on day one.

The bitterly cold Solent was gruelling enough for the regular day tripper let alone the few that had donned rubber suits for a day on the water.

The biting north easterly blew a consistent 14, gusting 16/17kts at times with some reasonable shifts making life challenging on a short windward leeward course with plenty of ragging the kite to make the downwind gate.

Pica / YoungReckless - Round 2, Day 1, UK 18ft Skiff Grand Prix 2012
Declan O'Riordan & Eddie Aldridge

It was Pica that was to dominate the day posting three firsts. With LED, Ronstan and Young and Reckless hot on their heels at times. Ronstan, having made the trip down from Loch Lomond to enter their first 18 event put in an impressive first showing with two seconds and a third often being hotly pursued by Young and Reckless. This promises more close racing between these two teams as the rest of the weekends racing unfolds.

Mark Watts and his team on Aftica showed great pace having bought Jack Grogan's M18 to replace their old B18. They were no doubt happy with a third in the first race but had to retire through gear failure in the second. The Hyde team, having only taken delivery of their replacement boat from Europe weeks before, spent the day in the boat park putting things together.

Carsington and Gill were stretching their legs as crew work settled down getting into the mix during the first couple of laps A number of team members, mostly helms with the exception of the clearly indestructible crews Steward Mears and Matt Kiddle, enjoyed a session in the Calshot Activity Centres Velodrome. More learning although different types of corners!

The Calshot Activity Centre had a live band and hog roast lined up in the evening.

A full complement of eight boats is expected for Sunday's three starts. The last day of sailing will be Bank holiday Monday.

Results after three races:
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 Pos BoatSailNoHelmCrew ClubR1R2R3Pts
1stPica92Jamie MearsStewart Mears / Tristan HuttStone SC1113
2ndRonstan12Craig HepplewaiteJohn Annan / Cammy SteeleLoch Lomond SC2237
3rdLED43Steve McLeanNick Murray / Tom BrutonHayling Island SC4RTD214
4thYoung & Reckless 30Tom HillMiguel Andrew / Mark KudlinskiRutland SCRTD3415
5thGill11Tom KiddleMatt Kiddle / Oscar MeadGCYC / Calshot SC54RTD16
6thAftica52Mark WattsMarcelle Newbold / Alex FarrCardiff Bay Yacht Club3RTDDNS20
7thCarsington40Richard AllenRichard Bland / Peter ShawCarsington SCRTDRTD521
8thHyde Sails26Jack GroganMike Banks / Sam CaslinWest Mersea YCDNSDNSDNS27

LED - Round 2, Day 1, UK 18ft Skiff Grand Prix 2012
Declan O'Riordan & Eddie Aldridge

Ronstan - 2013 Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show Day 2
Mark Burgin

Pica1 - Round 2, Day 1, UK 18ft Skiff Grand Prix 2012
Declan O'Riordan & Eddie Aldridge

UK 18 footer Class Association website

Class Sponsors - Blue Sheets Marine Directory, Spartan Wetsuits, Ovington Boats and Action Cameras. Event sponsors - DRisk Risk Management Software and Hyde Sails