At the halfway stage of the SailJuice
Global Warm-Up 2011, Matt Biggs and Ben Hollis have sailed their Merlin
Rocket to the top of the leaderboard after notching up a useful 9th
place from 238 entries in this weekend's Sailboats.co.uk Bloody Mary pursuit race.
Biggs and Hollis had won their handicap division at the previous
weekend's Grafham Grand Prix and they have been the most consistent
across the two events by some way. Under the series scoring system
all results are referenced against the largest single fleet of all four
events in the SailJuice series. Thus far it is the Bloody Mary fleet
which becomes the benchmark score, meaning that those who performed well
in the variable conditions at Queen Mary Sailing Club on Saturday have
put some useful points in the bank.
Winners of the Bloody Mary were Roger Gilbert and Ben McGrane, the
national champions who sailed their International 14 into the lead with
20 minutes of the race still to run. It was a dominant performance which
puts them in 17th overall after two events, even though they didn't
show up at Grafham. With one discard in the Series, there will be a good
deal more reshuffling of the pack once the Steve Nicholson Trophy and
John Merricks Tiger Trophy have taken place just under a month from now.
A second place at the Bloody Mary puts Fireball World Champions
Chips Howarth and Vyv Townend in 3rd overall, behind the Musto Skiff of
Andrew Peake who is now 2nd in the SailJuice series after finishing 20th
at Queen Mary.
Eight different classes feature in the current top 10 standings,
with only the Merlin Rocket and Musto Skiff appearing twice. It was
notable how mixed the top finishers were at the Bloody Mary, with Queen
Mary Sailing Club's careful reappraisal of the standard RYA PY numbers
paying dividends. With a Graduate and an International Moth both
finishing in the top 10, along with a variety of other hiking and
trapeze boats, Queen Mary's analysis of past finish data from previous
Bloody Marys appears to be opening up the field to more and more
Online entry to the Series has been extended up to 28 January, the
eve of the third event, the Steve Nicholson Trophy. So if you have
competed in the Grafham Grand Prix and/or the Bloody Mary, then make
sure you've signed to the SailJuice Global Warm-Up too. Online entry on
SailRacer.co.uk costs nothing, and there are hundreds of pounds of prizes to be won from the Series sponsors.
With the final prize-giving for the series set to take place at the
RYA Volvo Dinghy Show at Alexandra Palace on the weekend of 5/6 March
2011, there are some great prizes being provided by: Rooster Sailing,
Hyde Sails, Holt, RS Sailing, Laser Performance, YachtsandYachting.com