Gunfleet Sailing Club held its Annual General Meeting last Sunday 3 December when Commodore Richard Walker welcomed those members present and invited them to look back at a full and successful year of sailing and social activities on and off the water. Treasurer Peter Downer reported on the Club’s finances and gave reassurance on the financial soundness of Gunfleet; he went on to thank the generous sponsors – Orsted, Odiin, and Nucleus for their continued support.
Members of Gunfleet Sailing Club gathered on the beach to rig their boats for the last race in the Winter Series, and also of the 2023 season. The weather was proving cruel to them, offering very light winds coupled with an extremely low temperature, but this didn’t deter the competitors. As they launched, the high tide had just turned and the helms slowly paraded up and down the line working out the best area to start from. And at the start it was John Tappenden that lead the fleet, in his RS Aero, down the coast to the Eastcliff buoy, followed closely by Robert Mitchell in his Laser.
Members of the Gunfleet Sailing Club were pleased to be rigging-up their dinghies in order to take part in the fifth race of the Winter Series, in a pleasant force three gusting four southerly wind, having seen the previous two races blown off by gales. At 11:00 the Club held a two-minute silence in memory of those who sacrificed themselves for their country, and by this time the wind had veered south-westerly and faded to a light breeze.
Gunfleet Sailing Club celebrated the end of the 2023 sailing season with its Laying-Up Dinner and presentation of trophies in the Clubhouse. Following an impressive Chinese meal, Commodore Richard Walker reflected on the 2023 sailing season; the ups – strong turnouts for all the 50+ races, the two-day Regatta, the Cadet Splash, and the downs – the long run of bad weather preventing members getting on the water at times.
After a very unsettled spate of weather, the Gunfleet Sailing Club held its second race in the Winter Series last Sunday 22 October under blue skies and sunshine, with a light south-westerly breeze tempting fifteen dinghies onto the water.
Gunfleet Sailing Club kicked-off its Winter Series last Sunday 15 October 2023 in a fresh, and bighting, offshore wind, with a separate Cadet Winter Series for the younger members; Ken Potts and Adam Kedge taking the winning guns respectively.
Last Sunday 1 October, Gunfleet Sailing Club held two races, one for the Toppo Single Helm, and the other for the Cadet Single Helm, in a force four to five south/south-westerly wind and lumpy sea.
Somewhat unsettled conditions greeted Gunfleet Sailing Club members on Sunday 17 September 2023 when taking part in the Chase Pursuit Race; adding to the numbers were visiting sailors from Clacton Sailing Club.
Gunfleet Sailing Club members took to the water on Sunday 10 September 2023, during the unnaturally hot weather, to enjoy a full day of racing in very light winds.
Gunfleet Sailing Club held the race for the John Venables Trophy on Sunday 3 September with Ken Potts claiming victory in his Laser.
Gunfleet Sailing Club had a very busy Bank Holiday weekend, starting on Sunday 27 August with the Personal PY Pursuit Race where each sailor had their own start time based on their performance over a possible twenty-nine races previously held this season. With the same fixed finish time for everyone, start times actually ranged between forty minutes, with a combination of dinghy class, rig, and experience determining the time to go. It meant a real cat and mouse chase as the faster and more experienced sailors gradually closed the gap on their rivals.
Gunfleet Sailing Club members enjoyed fine weather last Sunday 20 August when they took part in the race for the Jim Suckling Shield. The blue skies, unbroken sunshine, and a force 3 to 4 south-westerly wind set the scene as the boats were rigged on the beach, and the race officer had a special buoy placed far offshore to compliment the standard marks and add variety to the course.
The last race in Gunfleet Sailing Club’s evening Summer Series was held on Wednesday 9 August in a fresh onshore breeze with Mitchell taking the winning gun in his Laser.
Gunfleet Sailing Club held the fifth race in its evening Summer Series on Wednesday 19 July with Robert Mitchell claiming victory in his Laser.
Gunfleet Sailing Club’s Fleet Championship race was held last Sunday 9 July in rather mixed weather conditions, with a very light wind picking-up before the start, a rain shower blowing through, and then a noticeable drop in wind strength as the competitors launched.