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2017 August Latest News

2017 National Unicorn Championships held at Stone SC in Essex

 Stone SC Essex                                                                                                 Gary Piper the 2017 National Champion

Nine Unicorns attended the 2017 Nationals and Stone SC wish to thank all competitors for making the effort and time to attend this event. The weather forecast for the week was for windy weather and so it proved. Those that arrived early had some good practise sails in very nice sunny conditions. After a very sociable Commodore's reception on the Sunday evening meeting old friends, we assembled for the first race briefing on the Monday with a forecast of strong winds from the SW with gusts up to 25 MPH. As the tide was ebbing for the whole race the water remained flat and but for masses of drifting weed in the first race everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. In the evening we were entertained by a singer / guitarist. The second day we encountered similar conditions to the previous day, but without the weed, and good racing was had by all. In the evening an entertaining quiz was held to exercise the brain over muscle. The third day was sailed in deteriorating conditions as the wind gusts increased to 30 MPH on occasions. Also with the wind against tide there was a very interesting short, steep chop to contend with! Most of the fleet started the first race but after one lap only the top four boats were left racing. With half the fleet cheering from the safety of the beach. They watched the heavier helms demonstrate Unicorn sailing on the limits ,but eventually Dan Jarman who was sailing brilliantly and leading the fleet was overpowered on a screaming reach and capsized, leaving the remaining boats to gingerly make their way to the finishing line. The Afternoon race was started in slightly less wind and Julian Mach joined the other four heavy weights using a reduced size sail. The wind slowly reduced accompanied by rain, but undeterred,Jarman adjusted to the conditions best and comfortably won the race. With winds of 45 MPH the next day's racing was cancelled but with a live disco in the evening a heavy drinking session took place, drinking the bar dry! The final day's racing  was in similar conditions to the first two days, but with wind against the tide, which made it difficult for the lighter sailors. Nine competitors started the first race but after two laps with Steve Pooley demonstrating his liking for these conditions,led the fleet .A misunderstanding over flag reading or was it joy of  finishing the race, he stopped racing . All remaining competitors followed Pooley and stopped racing, which allowed Dan  Jarman to pass them and complete the full course. The last race of the event was held back to back to allow competitors to packup their boats prior to prize giving dinner that evening. The conditions were similar to the first race but four boats were contesting for the top overall positions. Dan Jarman made a good start closely followed by William Dawson. Jarman continued to sail brilliantly in the difficult conditions and gradually extended his lead to win the race. A very close battle took place for the remaining places which Gary Piper won, just ahead of Pooley and Dawson. Congratulations to Gary for winning his 15 National title. His consistency over the Series of races made the difference in beating Jarman who had 4 first positions against Piper's 3. The Prize giving dinner was attended by over 100 people, followed by a Disco. So ends another National Championship at Stone. On behalf of all Unicorn sailors i would like to thank the Stone SC for a very professionally run event with a fantastic Social programme. The official racing report by Julius Mach can be  found on this web site under Members reports then Nationals.

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