April & May 2016 - Newsletter

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April & May 2016 - Newsletter

SHARP eyed readers will see what I’ve done here! I’d like to say that like St George I was busy fighting dragons during April and, therefore couldn’t write the newsletter. But, just like Saint George, I’ve never even seen a dragon let alone fought one! I did promise you that there would be more to write about sailing than in previous editions: so here goes.

ACCORDING to Baron de Coubertin, “The important thing .....is not to win, but to take part; the important thing in life is not triumph, but the struggle; the essential thing is not to have conquered but to have fought well.” That is going to be small comfort for Courtenay Suckling, who for several Mondays in a row managed to capsize – not that tragic you might think, except that this latest one occurred ¾ of the way through the race when he was ‘miles’ in the lead. Oh dear! A rumour is circulating that he was distracted by the committee boat mentioning notions of ‘victory sex’, not that I’d know much about that, not having won a race since I was Courtenay’s age. A truer version could be that our amiable antipodean might well have been dizzy after all the turns he’d had to do for hitting various marks around the course. I think the advice he was given about taking marks like a slalom skier may well not have been the wisest!

There were some other sailors out on Monday nights and this is how the top ten looks:






Bob Cudmore


Roberta Hartley


Mark Scott


Andrew Taylor


Ann Keates


Mike Kuzyk


Tim Alder


Trevor Annels


Courtenay Suckling


Colston Nichols


There’s some new names at the top and a few whom you will recognise may well be looking to improve their results. Monday racing figures are pretty good with about 20 boats getting on the water for each race. We’ve had eight races so far (May22nd), and this has resulted in six different winners already. We’ll be aiming to do another Big Monday this year so watch this space. It’s getting warmer and the longer evenings are with us, so it really is time to join us – the changing rooms appear to be for our personal use on Monday nights!

WEDNESDAY racing already has a familiar feel to it with Roger, Ann, Bob, Iain and Mike taking the top five spots respectively. However, all is not what it seems since a number of race results have been influenced by the inability of some of our more experienced racers to correctly identify the next mark of the course. This has led to both Mike and Pete T throwing away respectable leads by heading off for a more attractive but less accurate ‘proper course’. Incidentally, you might like to refresh your memory regarding the definition of a ‘proper course’. In my research for writing this article (yes, I do carry out research!), I was surprised to find out that there are only three occasions when the term ‘proper course’ has meaning. They are:

*Rule 18: Mark-Room

*Rule 17: Overtaking to leeward ...

*Rule 23: Interfering with another boat.

(rule numbers may not be up to date?)

On Wednesdays, 22 boats have sailed at least once, (or done a duty) but the poor start to our summer may be having its effect since average turnout is about 10. However, that still makes us healthier than most fleets in terms of numbers on the water. New names appearing on the score sheet are: L46, James Coupe and L192829, Mark Calvert: welcome to both.

SATURDAY racing has already included two opportunities to bag a trophy. No surprise then that the big names have already been in the hunt! Andrew Hartley secured the first of these, ‘The Wareham Trophy’, which might make up for his problems in the same race last year when he, too, had some difficulty in locating the relevant mark for his correct passage around the Wareham Channel! The first of our three scheduled mini series took place on May 7th and it was a very hard fought out affair. The biggest battle was between the Race Officer, (your Commanding Officer), who was determined to provide six races in two hours, and some disbelieving old stagers who felt she had no chance of accomplishing this. Well, as you might expect, the old stagers lost the argument but there was some collateral damage in the battle in that anyone finishing lower down than about third had only a tiny, tiny rest period between races. However, when I foolishly pointed this out to my commanding officer the reply was, “Well, you wouldn’t get a rest in a two hour Saturday race would you”. I reckon my wife would be a match in court for Rumpole himself! Enough of this self pity! The series was won by virtue of some impressively consistent sailing by Roger Hakes. Iain Reid had to suffer 1st loser position again – you’re getting to be a bit old for a bridesmaid Iain! Six races with five different winners shows what a hard fought competition it was – well done to everyone and to the Race Officer and her able assistant, James Hartley.

After four races (up to May7th) the top five are: Roger, Iain, Andrew, Mike and Roberta. But things could have been very different if Ann, Mike and Colston hadn’t at some stage, fallen into the same trap as those mentioned previously; namely, temporarily sailing the wrong course- actually, Ann achieved a more permanent error, meaning she had to retire from first place! Observant readers will have noticed that one name appears on both lists – I‘ll leave you to draw your conclusions!

IT is some time ago now that we completed the Perisher series, although the weather remains similar. So, somewhat belated congratulations are due to one Andrew Hartley who endured another very closely fought campaign with Roger Hakes and Mike Atkinson. Andrew secured his victory by a miserly three points

To complete this round up, two sailors are deserving of further mention. Our sailors of the month for April and May are Mark Scott and Bob Cudmore respectively. Mark gets his mention for topping the Monday night series for nearly two weeks! Bob’s mention derives from his consistently quick sailing in a variety of breeze. Currently Bob lies 6th in the Saturday Series, 3rd in Wednesday Series and 1st in the Monday Series. I refer you to Matthew 13:12 for my thoughts about that!

IT WOULDN’T BE the proper newsletter without a reminder to use the fleet’s web site to help you to keep up to date with Parkstone Laser Fleet matters. For example, you can find there information about the upcoming Laser Masters nationals at Hayling Island.>


Sail fast and fair,
Ann & John
Commanding Officer and Dog Robber

St George
is patron saint not only of England but also of Aragon, Catalonia, Ethiopia, Georgia, Greece, Lithuania, Palestine, Portugal, and Russia, as well as the cities of Amersfoort, Beirut, Bteghrine, Cáceres, Ferrara, Freiburg, Genoa, Ljubljana, Gozo, Pomorie, Qormi, Lod and Moscow.

He most definitely wasn’t English and his actual name was Georgios (the farmer of the land).

Posted: 28/04/2019 19:56:24 by Ann & John Keates | with 0 comments

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