Otters at Hayling Island

»«Saturday 2nd & Sunday 3rd July 2011

The Otters sent five competitors to the RS Tera National Championships at Hayling Island over the first weekend in July, James, Kathryn and Ben Hutton-Penman, Zac Bikhazi and Lucy Greenwood, amongst a total of 87 competitors.

The fleet was split into two, with the older and more experienced sailors sailing the larger "Pro" sail and the more junior sailors sailing the "Sports" sail. The race committee managed to get eight races in over two days with two discards, so six counting races. Conditions were beautiful, sunny and warm with a sea breeze picking up to between 12 and 15 knots on both days - in short conditions that suited everyone.

James successfully defended his Pro National Championship and fought off all the Tera National Squad sailors, scoring seven points from six counting races. Lying second on the Saturday night, three firsts and a second on Sunday ensured he sealed victory in difficult conditions with strong tides and shifting winds.

Kathryn Hutton-Penman was eighth in the Pro fleet and had a really good Sunday also - a couple of the races saw a Hutton-Penman first and second around the first windward mark! Zac Bikhazi has steadily improved over the last year and is now far more confident and finished in 22nd position.

In the Sports fleet, eight year old Ben Hutton-Penman was 25th out of 63. He was awarded an endeavour prize and was placed third under 10. Lucy Greenwood has now really got into the swing of things and was 38th.

Burnham Sailing Club won the team prize which was great helped by the fact that James and Kathryn sailed under the Burnham Sailing Club (they are members of both the BSC and the Otters) and they made up two of the three counting positions for that award.

In all a good weekend and it is clear that the RS Tera is growing in following.

Nick Hutton- Penman