The 2005 Endeavour Championship

»8th & 9th October 2005

The 2005 Endeavour Championship sailed over the weekend of the 8th and 9th October proved a great success, with the event being completely rejuvenated, primarily due to a change of boat. The GBR National Champions from the top dinghy classes competed in an 8 race series to determine who would be the 2005 Champion of Champions and receive the most prized trophy of the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club.

This year, the boat selected for the event was the new Topper Topaz Xenon, a two man roto-moulded asymmetric dinghy, thanks to the fantastic support of Topper. The Xenon is a completely new boat, launched at this event and so the competitors had not even seen one let alone sailed one, (apart from seeing the fibreglass mock-up at the dinghy exhibition last March).

Topper provided new boats for everyone at the event, certainly a brave way to introduce their new Xenon, i.e. let 26 National Champions race them in this prestigious championship and then see what they think of the boats qualities. However Topper pulled it off, with very positive comments at the end of the series and having pre-sold all the boats, the new owners arrived at the Royal Corinthian Sunday afternoon, eager to get their hands on their new race machines.

The event started on the Friday before, with sponsors TNG the 'people and organisation developers' providing a full days coaching, (a must to attend in these brand new boats) as well as an evening meal in the club.

Saturday saw the event underway for real, with a force 3 to 4 southerly breeze, allowing a good windward - leeward course to be set in the River Roach. Last years winner Nick Craig, a regular RS400 sailor, was this year representing the Finn class, but soon proved that a boat with which he was not familiar made little difference, as he clocked up four 1st's and a 2nd an the first day. There were good showings by the OK, Laser, Mirror, Lark, RS 200 and Laser 4000 representatives, with Steve Dunn the OK champion lying 2nd overnight.

Saturday evening, a superb championship dinner was arranged by the headline sponsors Holt in conjunction with the club and so keen were members of the Royal Corinthian to show their support for the event, their attendance in addition to the 52 competitors plus sponsors, swelled the numbers to 106. At this dinner Holt generously announced that they would be presenting a cheque for £500 to the winner and a similar amount to the John Merrick's Sailing Trust. The online magazine The Daily Sail also announced that they were giving a year's subscriptions to their web site, to the first five in the event.

Sunday started with very little wind and the race officer Kim Allen showed no intention of trying to start a race in these 'lottery conditions'. His patience was rewarded when a steady southerly breeze set in, enabling the course to be set up in the River Roach once more. The first race of the day showed the competitors that there was still everything to race for, when Nick Craig went further into the Foulness shore than his centreboard and rudder would allow and came off the mud in last place. His determination however got him back to 10th by the finish. Race 7 saw Nick coming 3rd and when the 'media' RIB came alongside him after this finish, he told the reporters that he had done his arithmetic and was confident that they had retained their title. The Sunday races were won by Hector Cisneros of the Mirrors , Paul Goodison Laser and Craig Burlton RS 200.

At the prize giving, the Endeavour Trophy and the Holt £500 cheque was presented to Nick Craig and James Stewart the very worthy 2005 Champion of Champions and the club was delighted to have the opportunity to thank the sponsors who had made the 2005 Endeavour so memorable, namely Holt, Topper, TNG and the Daily Sail.

Paul Noonan