Hamble Warming Pan 2010

A good turnout of 24 Merlins, sailing to the highest standard, had the pleasure of the Hamble river this past weekend. On the Saturday the fleet were greeted with light Northerly winds which reduced sailing to just one race that day. With a downwind start the fleet cruised en-mass down the river with Whitworth/Turner leading the proceedings in the fickle breeze. By the time the fleet reached the sausage course outside the river, they were greeted with a dying breeze and then the uphill struggle against the tide back up river.

The race was shortened giving Whitworth/Turner the bullet followed by Simon Blake/Jackson then Adams/Kennaugh, who fought closely to the finish. Further racing was canned at 2pm due to the disappearing wind and water.

Three races were sailed on Sunday in near perfect conditions with glorious sunshine and a NE breeze ranging between a F3-5. The first 2 races were sailed for the ST, the final race to act as race 2 in the Warming Pan series.

The first 2 races proved similar with very shifty/gusty conditions coupled with the ever increasing tidal stream, this made for very close racing and tricky conditions. These ST races saw many leaders and close competition throughout with snakes and ladders running the whole way down the river.

At the end of race 1 it was Bithell/Tunnicliffe who took line honours in front of Stewart/Dempsey then Davies/Pygall respectively. For race 2 Davies/Pygall sailed well to take the bullet and ST chocolates, followed by Calvert/Downham then Whitworth/Turner. This meant Calvert/Downham took second in the ST points followed by Bithell/Tunnicliffe.

The final race, and decider for the Warming Pan, was held in the same conditions but in a backing wind which gave Whitworth/Turner the jump at the start rounding first on the port lift. The similar conditions showed with the same faces of Calvert/Downham and Davies/Pygall chasing for the lead, with these three fighting to the end with close tacking on the shore edges and gusty lanes running down the river. At the final whistle Calvert/Downham took the honours with Davies/Pygall then Whitworth/Turner close behind.

Congratulations to Andy Davies and Tom Pygall, winners of the Warming Pan overall and the Silver Tiller Merlin open, this being the second year running that ‘Taxi’ has won here.

Report: Olly Turner

See also:
   Overall results (see page 3)
   Malcolm Donald's videos
   Photos from Chris Gillard
   Photos from Eddie Mays