Great Britain, Inland Chamionship 2001
The OK Inlands took place at Burton Sailing Club over the his weekend on 29-30 September where the 33 competitors were treated to virtually every wind strength and weather condition imaginable in an English autumn.
In the first race, the short line made a good start crucial. Reigning champion Dave Carroll, executed a perfect pin start to lead early on. The right side was predominately paying with big bends coming off the shore. Hedley Fletcher took the lead at the first mark to lead Carroll and Nick Craig. However, using a new sail design fro the UK North loft, Craig was soon out in front to lead to the finish.
A port biased line made for several general recalls in race two, with Will Turner making the best start when the race finally got away. Although Fletcher again lead early on, Craig was soon out in front and building an unassailable lead. The light winds decreased even more, with near calms towards the end of the race, saw Carroll finish a close third behind Fletcher whilst Turner, who had dropped back on a previous lap pulled through to fourth.
The forecast for Sunday was gales, although the wind was a fresh 3-5 and very gusty in places. A good start and a nice judged lift into the windward mark gave Robert Deaves the early lead in race three. Craig was not far behind and a few legs later was in the lead and extending it in the increasing wind. Fletcher and Carroll and Deaves fought out the next three places, finishing with boatlengths of each other after a gruelling race. Carroll threw away third after grabbing for his hat in a gust and dropping his tiller in the process, just two boatlengths from the finish! Deaves said thank you and whilst Carroll was head to wind, nipped round his transom and collected a third place.
A slightly moderated wind in race four saw Turner leading early on until a magnificent capsize to windward left him well down the fleet. Fletcher then powered off to a large winning margin followed by Deaves and Carroll. Towards the end of the race Carroll was just ahead, and with Deaves hitting the penultimate mark, Terry Curtis nipped through to finish third and take fourth overall from Deaves.
This championship also saw the culmination of the travellers series this year. Every meeting counts, each being weighted according to its importance. Results: Will, Turner, Nick Craig, Terry Curtis, Hedley Fletcher.
- Nick Craig GBR 2094 (Frensham Pond)
- Hedley Fletcher GBR 2103 (Burton SC)
- Dave Carroll GBR 2101 Deben YC
- Terry Curtis GBR 2084 Upper Thames SC
- Robert Deaves GBR 2081 Dabchicks SC
- Will Turner GBR 2045 Overy Staithe SC