Curtain Falls on the 2008 Sailing Programme

Gunfleet Sailing Club held the final race in its Winter Series on Sunday 7 December 2008 in very pleasant conditions, with a light west/north-westerly wind and flat sea coupled with blue sky and sunshine greeting the competitors. It didn’t take long for the competitors to make the first buoy, at Eastcliff, before a run out to the Seaward mark. At this point, whilst Ken Potts had forged ahead in his RS600 the Lasers and the Comet were unable to shake off Bethany Ford and Lydia Ward in their Topaz.

Bethany Ford and Lydia Ward in their Topaz. However, the beat back to the Eastcliff buoy began to separate the fleet, although by now Potts was in a comfortable lead. There then followed a run back out to sea which proved uneventful, before a reach to the Kingscliff buoy and back across the line. With the wind remaining light the officer of the day wisely shortened the course and the 2008 racing came to a very gentle end. Results: Winter Series 7: 1. RS600 – Ken Potts 2. Comet – Peter Downer 3. Laser – Andy Dunnett Winter Series Overall: 1. Solution – Simon Clarke 2. Solution – Mark Venables 3. Laser – Antony Reeve In the afternoon the Gunfleet Sailing Club held its Annual General Meeting when Commodore Richard Walker reflected on a very full and successful year. The disappointing weather had not prevented all the races being held and whilst some of the cruises had been affected there had still been some delightful sails during the season. There had been many high spots during the year and these included the Laser Open, the Xenon Open and the Club’s Regatta. The latter had been a two-day affair with a very popular Cadet Day on the Saturday and some great racing on the Sunday, including separate class racing in the afternoon. As a result of the Regatta a cheque for £300 had been presented to the Clacton Lifeboat Station. The Cadets and Otters of the Club had enjoyed a full programme of events including After School Sailing, Saturday Afternoon Sailing, Bring a Friend Days, the Cadet Day, and culminating in the Cadet Week. The Club now had 40 very active Cadets and Otters. Treasurer Yvonne Gough presented a comprehensive set of accounts for the year that showed a significant increase in membership, a large rise in race fee income and a doubling of the surplus made by the Galley from the previous year. The increased income had been offset by the cost of fencing works to the new compound, maintenance of the Club’s Rescue Boat and engine, and building repairs. There then followed the agreement to a minor restructuring of the Club’s Committee and the following positions for 2009 were appointed: President: Tony Heath Commodore: Richard Walker Vice Commodore: Dave Fowell Rear Commodore: Catherine Venables Treasurer: Yvonne Gough Sailing Secretary: Simon Clarke Social Secretary: John Clarke Cadet Officer: Andy Ford Compound Officer: Mark Venables Prior to the close of the meeting it was announced that the Club would be hosting the Solution class 2009 National Championships next August, a prestigious event in the sailing world and an honour for both the Club and the town.