Racing resumed in the Sailjuice Winter Series over the 11th-12th December Datchet water hiosted the 2nd round of the series.
Light winds was the expectation of the weekend and after a postponement and with light fading 2 races were held. Sunday arrived with better wind allowing for a single handicap race followed by the 100 minute pursuit. After the completion of the handicap racing Tom Gillard and Rachel Rhodes sat top of the leaderboard in their Merlin Rocket a single point ahead of the 505 of Roger Gilbert and Ben McGrane.
At the end of the pursuit race the Merlin had cleared the fleet to be leading with 20 minutes remaining and at the bottom of the final beat the 505 was through to 2nd and chasing in the building breeze. In the end gap was down to 100m as the finish was sounded, Tom and Rachel winning the pursuit and with it the event.
Ben's thoughts after the racing, 'these events are great for keeping us racing in the off season, the work behind the scenes on the PY's is making for closer racing every year across many different classes and the events are attracting some of the UK's best sailors, it's great racing. Each event is a unique challenge whether it be the conditions, courses or types of races. Today especially we had to really work to find clear air and the 505 is a real challenge on tight reaches, a lot of planning ahead and keeping errors to a minimum. Most importantly we are continually improving the set up with the Hyde Sails package to get the most from the sails in all conditions, this weekend we've definitely made another step forwards which is exactly what we want going into next season'.
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