Bowmoor hosted a good turnout of 33 boats for its Supernova Open, even with some regulars unable to attend for various reasons. This was also a shared event with the Byte Class (on separate starts) with 20 Bytes attending, which made for interesting and attentive sailing across the course. Bowmoor is always very popular and this event was no exception with a lot of new faces on the circuit with both new and old boats. The Open followed the previous day’s training where 25 helms benefited from RYA Trainer Andy Kerr’s excellent training on tacking and boat speed practice, in what turned out to be light winds.

For the Open event, RO Tom Whittingham laid a good course in very shifty and variable SSW winds using the Committee boat. Initially it took a while to establish a good line and position for the Windward mark due to the shifty wind, and the first start line ended up with a significant port bias. However, Race 1 got under way first time with no recalls. Port end was the place to be. Tim Hand (Sutton in Ashfield) and Iain Horlock (Exe) both got cracking starts and were the top two boats rounding the Windward mark, followed by Mike Gibson (Bartley), and the trio of Cotswold sailors Ed Presley, Cliff Milliner and Robin Kirby. Tim managed to hold off Ian around the first lap, but Cliff Milliner sailed an excellent second lap to get into 2nd place. Tim finished 1st, Cliff 2nd and Mike Gibson 3rd.

Race 2 followed a hearty ‘Pat and Stan’ lunch but a hail and rain squall came just as the fleet was preparing to launch their boats in tricky onshore conditions, and a considerable drop in temperature accompanied by a squally wind. At the start, about a third of the fleet was over the line (unusual for Supernova starts), so after a general recall and a wellbehaved black flag start, Cliff Milliner was first up the beat followed in quick succession by Mike Gibson, Robin Kirby, EdPresley, Paul Undrell (Milton Keynes), and Tim Hand. Cliff Milliner pulled away on the second lap from Mike Gibson, though as Ed Presley rounded the bottom mark he retired with a broken kicker. Cliff Milliner 1st, Mike Gibson 2nd, Tim Hand 3rd.

In Race 3 Cliff Milliner once again got off to a great start. Windward mark saw Cliff Milliner, Tim Hand then Robin Kirby, followed by Paul Undrell and Mike Gibson. Cliff again sailed away to make it a race for 2nd place. Tim Hand managed to cover Mike Gibson around the last 2 laps to bag 2nd place with Mike Gibson 3rd. Whilst our top sailors battled it out at the front of the fleet, there was strong competition to be found for everyone and it was easy to lose big placings through simple mistakes or missing the shifts.

Prizes were kindly donated by Hartley Boats, in recognition of the joint event with the Bytes. Cliff Milliner (Cotswold SC) took first, with Tim Hand (Sutton in Ashfield SC) 2 nd, Mike Gibson (Bartley SC) 3rd, Iain Horlock (Exe SC) 4th. First Master went to Paul Undrell (Milton Keynes SC) who finished 5th. Brian Smith (Bowmoor SC) took first Veteran prize (10th) and 1st Mark 1 boat. Serena Stewardson from Emberton Park SC took first lady (28th).

Another excellent Open event for the Supernova Class (and Byte Class too) with special thanks to sponsors Noble Marine and Hartley Boats.

Pete Bingham
Supernova Class Secretary