With the PRO hoping to complete three races on Friday things did not look good when crews arrived at Restronguet SC to prepare for racing. The water was like a mill pond, with faint zephyrs of breeze showing only fleetingly across Carrick Roads. Racing was postponed and, with a final day latest start time of 14.00hrs, a final decision was due to be made on whether any racing would take place that day at 13.00hrs. With ten minutes to go until the final decision time a bank of thunder clouds rolled in lifting the breeze and allowing the PRO Ian Fraser to allow the release of the boats from the shore for one final race.
This was race 8 of the 10 race series and would bring in the second discard to the series. With the sound of distant thunder in the background the race got underway with boats having to fight the shifting winds, with big losses and gains being experienced on the beats. As the race neared its conclusion the wind started to drop making things even harder for crews to get across the line.
At the end of the day Rory Mackenzie / Harvey Martins strong showing in this race to finish first allowed them to leapfrog week long leader Nigel Thomas / Milly Moss and win the 2011 Mirror Nationals. Having had his 16th birthday during the event this had been a good week for Rory, who has sailed in the Mirror fleet for a couple of years previously with his brother Callum. Second place went to twins Ed and Beth Grey who pulled their way back up from 9th overall on Tuesday with some very consistent sailing. Third place overall went to Nigel Thomas / Milly Moss who did not benefit from the last race being run, only being able to finish in 8th and having to count the race after the discards kicked in.
Other prize winners included Miles and Rory O'Dell who won the Topaz Trophy for the leading parent / offspring and Miles also won the 1963 Trophy for the leading helm over 49, Emma / Rachael Grayson who won the U19, first Lady Helm and first wooden boat, Matt / Ben Lulham Robinson U15 winners. Katie Davies / Gemma Keers won the Silver Fleet and Scarlett and Ashley Shepherd the Bronze Fleet.
Thank you to all crews who entered this event, which included a number of you who had never been on a start line with this number of boats before, we hope that you enjoyed the event and have started thinking about entering the Mirror Europeans and Nationals next year at Poole YC and Itchenor SC respectively. Other options for you to consider are to apply for the Mirror Zone / National Squads (please see the RYA website or contact the MCA Secretary Peter Lulham Robinson), with squad qualification events coming up in September / October.
Congratulations to Rory and Harvey for their achievment - it has been a while since there has been such a young National Champion, and it is hoped this provides inspiration to those of you coming through the ranks.