Chris Rashley is the 2015 UK National Champion

Chris Rashley is the International Moth UK National Champion again

Chris Rashley is the International Moth UK National Champion again. All photos (c) Mark Jardine

The final day didn’t provide the glamorous conditions of the previous two days, but the Stokes Bay Race Team, led by Principal Race Officer Mike Rayden, managed to complete the full series in marginal foiling conditions.

With Chris Rashley clearly out in front, the battle for second place overall was hot – just six points separated 5 boats going into the final day.

Ben Payton 2nd

Ben Payton 2nd

In the end Ben Paton just pipped Jason Belben thanks to a third place in the final race. The pair ended equal on points but Paton’s greater number of second place results gave him the runners-up spot on the podium.

Ben was focused today and blitzed off the line to lead half of the first race, only for Rashley to overhaul him on the second lap. Ben said after the racing, “I had a tricky start to the event, two discards in my first two races, so I felt a bit under pressure but it made me work really hard and I was really pleased to go out today and do what I did. I wasn’t always in a strong position around the windward mark but I managed to fight, even though my legs and arms were in absolute agony. I managed a third in the final race which I’m really pleased about.”

Jason Belben 3rd

Jason Belben 3rd

Jason Belben was pragmatic about losing out to Ben on count-back, “I thought it was going to be difficult today and I went out there with a positive attitude, but I was very pleased with what I came back with to be honest. The first two races today I was really chuffed with and I only messed up the last one unfortunately. I think the event has gone very well, we’ve managed to get 12 races in and they’ve been good, solid races. The weather’s been ideal, we couldn’t have wished for more.”

Jason said on Ronstan’s sponsorship of the event, “The Ronstan product suits the Moth ideally so we’re always going to be involved with these sort of events.”

The fleet has gone through a lot since the Moth Nationals were last held at Stokes Bay and Jason reflected on the quality of the racing throughout the fleet, “I think if you compare it to last time we were here, which was about four years ago, there was a big spread then, but you can see how the whole boat has developed and the people sailing it have got used to waves and everyone’s come closer together and we’re all using similar equipment now. There’s not a lot of difference in boat speed now.”

Penny Clark 1st lady

Penny Clark 1st lady

Chris Rashley continued his blistering form to make it 11 wins from 12 races, with just the slight blemish of his 2nd place in race 1, but with two discards in the event he was still discarding a 1st place.

Chris said after racing, “It feels great, when I came into the regatta I felt I was going to be really pushed to win the event, but I went out there to try and keep it simple and ended up coming through to the front by the end of most of the races.”

The next regatta for Chris and a number of the British sailors is the European Championship in Holland. Chris, who has won the Europeans title four times, said, “It’s a big event for me to try and win it five times, I’m pretty sure it hasn’t been done before from looking at the trophy at home. It’ll be a big challenge for me to try and win that but at the same time I think you’ve got to be realistic, everyone’s working really hard and people will be getting better and certainly catching me at this event. There’s a few things going on in development at the moment which will hopefully give me a little bit of a gain in the next month to six weeks but that’s really all the time I’ve got before the event. It’s a little bit last-minute but I’m just going to rely on my sailing ability to pull me through.”

Alex Koukourakis - 1st home  build

Alex Koukourakis – 1st home build

Worldwide, the antipodeans still hold the upper hand, with a Pete Burling master-class at the 2015 Worlds in Sorrento. Chris said on closing the gap to Pete, “If there’s one thing I’ve learnt about Moth sailing it’s about how good people are at keeping the boat going at 95 to 100% of its capability whilst racing and Pete is incredible at that, he shows that in the 49er and he shows that in anything else he’s touched really. He’s extremely good at keeping the boat in the groove and when I sailed against him in the worlds he was in a different league to me. I had some issues during the worlds and I think I would have been a little bit closer had we been racing each other this week, and I would have like to have thought I could have taken a few races off him, but he’s a long way ahead of everyone else.”

Dylan Fletcher's  Rocket Racoon. The shape of things to come?

Dylan Fletcher’s Rocket Racoon. The shape of things to come?

Ricky Tagg and Graham Simmonds, who have done a lot organising events for the UK Moth class, reflected on a successful championship. Ricky said, “I think overall it’s been a very good event, it’s great that we got all the scheduled races in. We’ve had winds from marginal foiling to good solid breeze with waves, so I think anybody who wins here or does well is truly worthy of the title, bearing in mind the different conditions we’ve had to contend with.”

On the quality of the UK fleet Ricky said, “There have been a number of innovations over the last two to three years which have percolated all the way down the fleet, so people now have the relevant controls, which means that everyone can race the boat harder. People are practicing more and you’re seeing much tighter racing throughout the fleet – everybody’s racing rather than just trying to stay on the boat.”

Graham added to this by saying, “I think the main difference in the two and a half years is we’ve had a shift away from Australian-based development to UK-based development, obviously with the introduction of the Maguire Exocet, which is now competitive in all conditions.”

Chris and accepting his trophy

Chris accepting his trophy

Ricky concluded on this with advice for anyone wanting to join the Moth fleet, “Go to the UK website at www.internationalmoth.co.uk and drop us an email through the contact page and we’ll be happy to help anyone to get into the class.”

At the prize-giving, the competitors and organisers thanked the race committee, club staff, catering staff, bar staff and the sponsors who have kindly supported this event; Noble Marine, Ronstan, Blueteq and Maguire Boats.

Overall Results: (twelve races, 2 discards)
If you finished in the top ten at the International Moth nationals then enter your Gear Guide information here

Pos Sail No Helm Club R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 R9 R10 R11 R12 Pts
1 4 Chris Rashley Stokes Bay SC & Royal London YC ‑2 ‑1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 10
2 3982 Ben Paton Lymington Town SC (DNC) ‑22 2 2 4 2 3 4 2 2 9 3 33
3 3942 Jason Belben Stokes Bay SC 4 4 4 4 2 ‑13 4 2 4 3 2 ‑6 33
4 4208 Dylan Fletcher WPNSA 1 2 6 ‑20 ‑12 4 2 3 6 6 4 2 36
5 4147 Mike Lennon Hayling Island SC 3 ‑7 3 3 3 3 5 5 5 4 ‑6 4 38
6 4097 Rory Fitzpatrick NYC / RIYC 7 5 (DNC) 6 5 9 8 6 3 ‑12 5 7 61
7 4309 James McMillan Gurnard SC / Stokes Bay SC ‑10 3 8 9 10 10 7 7 ‑14 10 3 9 76
8 4040 Dan Henderson Stokes Bay SC 6 8 9 7 8 7 10 ‑13 9 8 10 ‑15 82
9 4251 Dan Ward Frensham Pond / Stokes Bay SC 13 ‑37 11 ‑44 13 5 6 8 8 11 7 8 90
10 4062 Jonathan Heathcote Stokes Bay SC 9 6 7 5 7 6 11 (DNC) 13 14 ‑22 13 91
11 4099 Ricky Tagg Hayling Island SC 5 11 15 ‑21 6 8 ‑23 15 17 5 13 5 100
12 4115 David Hivey Datchet Water SC 17 19 5 18 9 15 9 ‑24 ‑23 9 11 10 122
13 3979 Dan Ellis Yealm YC 15 42 (DNC) ‑47 11 11 13 9 7 7 19 11 145
14 4301 John Clifton Homeless 16 9 21 ‑25 15 21 ‑30 12 10 17 12 16 149
15 3940 Penny Clark Stokes Bay SC 18 21 12 12 18 14 16 10 16 16 ‑28 ‑32 153
16 4144 Fabien Froesch SNG 20 15 13 11 17 12 19 ‑23 11 20 23 ‑26 161
17 4074 Eelco Boers WV Roerkoning 8 10 (DNC) 24 16 ‑35 12 19 20 31 15 12 167
18 4149 Ollie Holden Hayling Island SC 12 18 ‑24 15 19 20 17 14 ‑22 22 16 17 170
19 4189 Phillip Kasermann SNG 14 20 10 8 24 17 25 17 18 24 ‑29 ‑28 177
20 4037 Jason Russell Hayling Island SC ‑24 23 22 22 ‑26 16 14 18 24 21 18 23 201
21 4075 Doug Pybus Queen Mary SC ‑31 ‑28 18 23 21 19 27 22 28 15 17 14 204
22 4060 Neil Baker Hayling Island SC 27 25 23 19 ‑41 22 ‑36 16 12 23 24 27 218
23 4096 Tim Penfold Hayling Island SC 23 31 26 14 23 18 15 11 32 ‑33 (BFD) 30 223
24 3776 Philippe Schiller SNG 35 16 14 10 14 ‑45 31 20 26 ‑52 38 29 233
25 4067 Cameron Stewart Hayling Island SC 29 17 16 16 30 23 39 27 21 26 (DNF) (DNC) 244
26 4277 Jeremy Hartley Stokes Bay SC 22 30 20 26 ‑32 26 ‑33 26 31 18 25 25 249
27 4100 Alex Koukourakis Eastbourne Sov SC 25 ‑43 (DNC) 27 22 30 35 28 25 29 20 19 260
28 3959 Alex Adams Castle Cove SC 38 26 25 ‑48 (DNC) 25 24 30 27 19 27 20 261
29 4121 James Phare Queen Mary SC 21 12 17 17 25 (DNC) (DNC) DNC DNC 27 8 21 268
30 3943 Richard Edwards Parkstone YC 26 29 27 ‑49 20 34 28 25 ‑35 32 30 22 273
31 3922 Kyle Stoneham Thorpe Bay YC 19 14 19 37 28 ‑41 20 35 34 ‑42 34 36 276
32 4299 Chris Clarke Thorpe Bay YC 32 ‑34 32 28 27 24 ‑34 31 33 25 31 24 287
33 4065 Anthony Rezzoug ASNQ 33 32 35 33 31 39 22 29 15 ‑40 35 (DNC) 304
34 4043 Matthew Lea Grafham Water SC ‑36 24 30 31 33 31 29 32 29 35 ‑36 34 308
35 4072 Tom Lambert Wilsonian SC 30 27 29 45 (DNC) 32 32 39 (DNC) 30 21 37 322
36 4344 Ross Harvey Hayling Island SC 46 (DNC) (DNC) DNC DNC 28 21 21 48 13 14 18 329
37 4049 Giovanni Galeotti RYCB 11 13 31 (DNC) 29 (DNC) 18 34 19 DNC DNC DNC 335
38 4280 Constantijn Weber WSV Muiderberg 40 35 28 ‑50 (DNC) 27 37 36 30 36 37 35 341
39 4233 Dominic Hutton Queen Mary SC ‑50 ‑48 43 38 42 29 26 33 39 28 32 33 343
40 3715 Chris Jeeves Homeless 43 36 38 ‑46 39 42 40 ‑45 37 37 40 38 390
41 412 Leigh Albrecht Queen Mary SC 28 46 (DNC) 13 35 (DNC) DNC DNC DNC 34 26 31 393
42 3674 Simon Grundy Homeless ‑45 ‑45 39 42 36 40 42 42 38 39 43 41 402
43 4307 Hans Rasmussen Troense Badelaug 37 33 (DNF) 32 37 44 45 50 (DNC) 45 39 43 405
44 3914 Ole Frey Sonderborg YC ‑47 40 40 29 (DNC) 47 44 41 40 38 45 46 410
45 4162 Steve McLean Hayling Island SC / LSC ‑49 41 34 34 (DNC) 48 48 47 41 41 41 42 417
46 3794 Menno Berens Marina Muiderzand ‑48 47 42 35 38 ‑51 46 44 43 48 46 45 434
47 3924 Robert Pike Eastbourne Sov SC ‑52 49 41 40 (DNC) 50 43 46 44 44 44 39 440
48 4281 Nic Streatfeild Rutland SC 34 39 36 41 (DNC) 43 41 40 (DNC) DNC DNC DNC 454
49 3190 Chris Tilbrook Starcross YC 51 (DNC) 44 36 40 ‑53 50 48 49 49 49 48 464
50 3945 Eddie Bridle Brightlingsea SC 44 38 33 30 34 (DNC) (DNC) DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC 479
51 3756 Andrew Jarvis Oxford SC (DNC) (DNC) DNC DNC DNC 36 47 43 42 46 42 47 483
52 4254 David Smithwhite Hayling Island SC 41 44 37 43 43 37 (DNC) (DNC) DNC DNC DNC DNC 485
53 3980 Graham Simmonds Hayling Island SC 39 (DNC) (DNC) DNC DNC 38 38 37 36 DNC DNC DNC 488
54 4343 James Sainsbury Grafham Water SC 55 50 (DNC) (DNC) DNC 33 51 38 47 47 DNC DNC 501
55 4126 Luka Dogan Marina Kastela 53 51 45 39 (DNC) 49 (DNC) DNC 46 50 48 DNC 501
56 3870 Eddie Gatehouse Hayling Island SC 54 (DNC) (DNC) 51 DNC 52 49 49 45 51 47 44 502
57 3720 Bruce Spratt Thorpe Bay YC 42 (DNC) (DNC) DNC DNC 46 DNC DNC DNC 43 33 40 504
58= 398 Cameron Harris Parkstone YC (DNC) (DNC) DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC 600
58= 3131 Guy Raynes Weston SC (DNC) (DNC) DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC DNC 600

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