1976 National Championships at Newquay SC

Black and white photo of two Mirrors racing to windward in a big swell

Practice Race, Sunday 29th August

1 48780 Dave Sherwin Leigh-on-Sea S.C
2 17342 Graham Ellis Gresford S.C.
3 29263 Peter Robinson Ripon S.C.
4 47473 Harry Prangnell Fishers Green S.C.
5 48010 Mark Rushall Draycote Water S.C.
6 46732 Dave Derby Broadstairs S.C.

 

Dave Sherwin led throughout the race, from Colin Gardiner of Forfar S.C., who was disqualified when he forgot his safety tag. Graham Ellis made a poor start, but came up from the twenties to finish in second place. There was a tremendous tussle throughout between Harry Prangnell and Mark Rushall. The World Champion, Roy Partridge, retired early in the race following a port and starboard incident. Welcome “far-flung” (but paid up!) Association Members were Frank Havik and Monique Janssen of Monnickendam, the Club who acted as hosts for the World Championships, and Grant Nicholls. who arrived at Newquay via Holland from Melbourne, Australia, and borrowed the Flag Ship.

Many competitors overstood the windward mark because of the tides, which also caused several unpremeditated gybes on the downwind leg of the Olympic course. The wind freshened slightly throughout the race, but was never more than a force 2. Waves were a little confused, especially at the start of the beat. Good anticipation of the veering winds on the part of the Race Officer meant that the beat, which was biased at first, was true on the last windward leg to the finishing line.

All competitors expressed great pleasure at being once again entertained by the quiet efficiency of Newquay Sailing Club, under Commodore, John Turver.

1st Points Race, Monday 30th August

1 50131 Chris Maxfield Weaver S.C.
2 29263 Peter Robinson Ripon S.C
3 48010 Mark Rushall Draycote Water S.C.
4 42919 Chris Owen Northwich S.C.
5 7241 Stuart Bottoms Errwood S.C.
6 43030 Kim Leatt Broadstairs S.C.


The wind increased from a force 2-3 to a force 5, gusting 6, with confused seas. The northerly winds veered westerly, giving a tremendous lift on the first beat, and allowing the use of spinnakers, before it went back to the north. The Club reckoned there was a twenty-foot ground swell.

Many competitors returned from the finishing line under jib only, and of 135 starters, the sea and the wind claimed 50, leaving 85 to finish. One boat had to be lifted in pieces aboard the Committee boat; a metal mast developed a right-angle, and there was considerable breakage. The veering wind on the first beat caused great congestion on the gybe mark.

The first three to finish maintained their positions at each windward mark throughout the race, but there was a tremendous changing of position down the fleet, where 24 Cornish boats, and a total of 51 different Clubs were battling with the elements.

The World Champion, Roy Partridge, led for the greater part of the race, capsized before the last gybe mark, managed to right himself, and finished 48th. His comments afterwards were “Wet suits? I don’t take a wet-suit because you never capsize a Mirror”.

2nd Points Race, Tuesday 31st August

1 15000 Roy Partridge I.P.C. (Iver) Y.C.
2 48010 Mark Rushall Draycote Water S.C.
3 47473 Harry Prangnell Fishers Green S.C.
4 46732 Dave Derby Broadstairs S.C.
5 17349 Richard Smallwood Stokes Bay S.C.
6 17342 Graham Ellis Gresford S.C.


The second race was postponed because of surf in the mouth of the harbour, which would have made launching totally impossible. However, half-an-hour later, 123 Mirrors set off under brilliant sunshine, with a force 4 wind, and a difficult, lumpy sea. Although Roy Partridge led for most of the way, defending Champion, Mark Rushall, was breathing down his neck. Only ten seconds behind at the third windward mark, Mark Rushall lost to the reigning World Champion by twenty seconds at the finishing line. The last beat  was a superb tacking duel between the World Champion and the defending Champion, with the more experienced man just maintaining his control. A newcomer to the top ranks is Lt. Cmdr. Smallwood of Stokes Bay.

Overall positions at this point, taking both races into consideration, were Mark Rushall (Draycote Water) first, Peter Robinson (Ripon) second, Chris Maxfield (Weaver) third.

3rd Points Race, Wednesday 1st September

1 15000 Roy Partridge I.P.C. (Iver) Y.C.
2 47473 Harry Prangnell Fishers Green S.C.
3 17342 Graham Ellis Gresford S.C.
4 6950 Derek Beere I.P.C. (Iver) Y.C.
5 48780 Dave Sherwin Leigh-on-Sea S.C.
6 46732 Dave Derby Broadstairs S.C.


Disregarding any discards, at this stage in the week the overall winner on points was Harry Prangnell, last year’s Western Area Champion who unfortunately failed to qualify, despite predictions, for the World Team to go to Holland. Harry is now back on form, and sailing very consistently in the top five at the National Championships.

A fleet of 136 set out in a lumpy sea, with force 1-2, which freshened to a fairly steady force 3 during the race. Shifting wind on the start line favoured a late start through the gate, and some starters were grievously left. The sea claimed fewer casualties, as 130 of the boats finished. There were a considerable number of protests, and, as the single-handed race also took place on the same day, it was difficult to get the overall positions accurately until all the protests had been heard. It is enough to say that at the top, but not necessarily in this order, were Harry Prangnell, Chris Maxfield, Peter Robinson, Trevor Smith, Graham Ellis, Mark Rushall, Roy Partridge, Chris Owen and Chris Sidey. A welcome return to the top ranks is Derek Beere of I.P.C. (Iver) Y.C., a past National Champion and European runner-up in 1973.

Cohn Gardiner, who actually finished third in this race, qualifies for the sob story of the week. Disqualified from the practice race, when he finished second but had forgotten his safety tag, he was disqualified from the third points race, having finished third, because the position of his thwart contravened the design. Like the sportsman that he is, Cohn worked hard to put his boat into Class, and accepted very graciously the Committee’s decision.

The Committee carried out their intention to measure the top three boats from each race.

4th Points Race, Thursday 2nd September

1 46732 Dave Derby Broadstairs S.C.
2 17342 Graham Ellis Gresford S.C.
3 17349 Richard Smallwood Stokes Bay S.C.
4 48010 Mark Rushall Draycote Water S.C.
5 29263 Peter Robinson Ripon S.C.
6 15000 Roy Partridge I.P.C. (Iver) Y.C.

 

The Race Committee postponed the start for an hour and a half, due to surf at the mouth of the harbour. The wind, force 3-4, dropped throughout the race, which was quite a short one owing to the need to get the dinghies back through the harbour entrance before they ran any risk of being caught in the surf and swept ashore in pieces. With bright sunshine and white horses, the fleet looked its usual picture, but the sea was much choppier than the wind conditions appeared to warrant.

With a complete change in the leadership, and three new boats requiring measurement under the Committee’s decision to measure the first three of every race, it was interesting to note that 17342 and 17349, both seven-year-old boats, proved that a new boat is not essential to victory.

Roy Partridge’s consistent position in the top of the fleet proves conclusively that mature years are no handicap! At the end of each race there is a positive gleam in the eye of all the over-thirties, when they assess Roy’s position in the race and realise that their day is by no means done.

With protests making it impossible to assess the overall positions at this stage, and with the Championship still wide open, possible winners could be Harry Prangnell, Roy Partridge, Dave Derby, Mark Rushall or Graham Ellis, in other words, the fleet which represented the United Kingdom in Holland, with Harry Prangnell managing to keep ahead of World Runner-up, Chris Owen.

Graham Ellis won the single-handed race, and newcomer to the Committee, Deborah Evelyn. showed the girls that, even among such illustrious competition, third place was attainable.

5th Points Race, Friday 3rd September

1 47473 Harry Prangnell Fishers Green S.C.
2 17342 Graham Ellis Gresford S.C.
3 29263 Peter Robinson Ripon S.C.
4 6950 Derek Beere l.P.C. (Iver) Y.C.
5 15000 Roy Partridge I.P.C. (Iver) Y.C.
6 17349 Richard Smallwood Stokes Bay S.C.

 

Boats were away to the start of the final race with a wind force 2, variable. Everything depended upon the outcome of this race, and the top ten helmsmen were fighting it out. Roy Partridge did not have a good start, but, with the winds steadying and increasing, he improved his position, particularly on the last beat, and managed to finish fifth. This meant the final results were about the keenest we have ever experienced, with World Champion, Roy Partridge, leading from Harry Prangnell by a quarter of a point, with Harry holding off Graham Ellis by the same margin.

A  couple of photos of the fleet launching, kindly provided by Newquay Sailing Club

This was once more a more successful Nationals. Ernie Radcliffe, as Race Officer, deserved the thanks of the entire fleet, and other members and officers of Newquay Sailing Club gave up at least a week of their holiday to tend to our every need. We have been to Newquay now three times for a National Championship. It is among the venues that cause least headaches to the Association, and, as in the case of our report on the Rally, we can only close with the words “When can we come back?”.

Results

Position Boat Sailors Club R1 R2  R3 Points
1 60015 - Funderbird (sailing as 15000)  Roy & Graeme Partridge I.P.C. (Iver) Y.C. (48) 1 1  
2 47473 - Topaz Harry & John Prangnell Fishers Green S.C.   3 2  
3 17342 Graham Ellis Gresford S.C.   6 3  
4 48010 - Goldrush Mark Rushall Draycote Water S.C. 3 2    
5 46732 David Derby Broadstairs S.C.   4 6  
6 29263 Peter Robinson Ripon S.C. 2      
7 50131 Chris Maxfield Weaver S.C. 1      
8 14177 Trevor Smith l.P.C. (Iver) Y.C.        
9 17349 Richard Smallwood Stokes Bay S.C.   5    
10 34912 Colin Gardiner Forfar S.C.        
11 51000 Chris Sidey l.P.C. (lver) Y.C.        
12 43030 Kym Leatt Broadstairs S.C. 6      
13 42919 Chris Owen Northwich S.C. 4      
14 36950 Christopher Cleaves Newquay S.C.        
15 34502 Jonathan Austin Cransley S.C.        
16 47585 Deborah Evelyn Tynemouth S.C.        
17 39935 Nigel Grogan Newquay S.C.        
18 46620 George Mellar Aldridge S.C.        
19 39000 Flag Ship (sailing as 2852) Grant Nicholls Melbourne,  Australia        
20 16275 D. W. Bristow Thorpe Bay S.C.        
21 39292 Lew Owen Northwich S.C.        
22 29946 Richard Major West Riding S.C        
23 50205 Stuart Hastings Maidstone S.C.        
24 1510 Bill Childs Draycote Water S.C.        
25 18951 Edward Dunhill Worthing Y.C.        
26 15497 M. E. Cope South Caernarvonshire Y.C.        
27 43234 Carolyn Eales Draycote Water S.C.        
28 44438 Gordon Foley Stokes Bay S.C.        
29 38263 Tony Shute Exe S.C.        
30 6238 Martin Dare Restronguet S.C.        
31 21193 Clive Eplett Fowey Gallants S.C.        
32 25850 Terry Cherrill Kingsmead S.C.        
33 35603 M. N. Marsden Blackpool & Fleetwood Y.C.        
34 51507 Frank Havik Monnickendam, Holland        
35 42417 Philip Davis Mumbles Y.C.        
36 32445 Ian Cherrill Kingsmead S.C.        
37 42152 Frank H. Cole Melton Mowbray S.C.        
38 6566 Julia Tucker Porthpean S.C.        
39 19518 Walter Maxfield Weaver S.C.        
40 6950 Derek Beere I.P.C. (Iver) Y.C.     4  
41 7241 Stewart Bottoms Errwood S.C. 5      
42 35794 Alan Bambrough Bexley S.C.        
43 49256 Noel Fay Bough Beech S.C.        
44 26343 Philip Bowers Huddersfield S.C.        
45 41960 N. Curry Burnham-on-Sea S.C.        
46 39508 Mark Wilkins Seasalter S.C.        
47 14252 Tony Moore Fowey Gallants S.C.        
48 41871 Angus Broadhurst Royal Tay Y.C.        
49 47361 Paul Radgick Exe S.C.        
50 22151 Huw Stephens Barry Y.C.        
51 6315 S. W. Child Weston S.C.        
52 13963 M. Stevenson Mounts Bay S.C.        
53 48780 - Rosie Dave Sherwin Leigh-on-Sea S.C.     5  
54 22396 Hugh Jones CransleyS.C.        
55 28209 John K. Gooch Seasalter S.C.        
56 1118 C. Spencer-Smith Porthpean S.C.        
57 28170 Robin Harris Bexhill S.C.        
58 7467 Pam Gough B.S.C. Margam S.C.        
59 1067 C. B. McKinnon Emsworth S.C.        
60 39057 Julian Bridges Mumbles Y.C.        
61 39852 Miss Peddlesden Bexhill S.C.        
62 53136 Monique Janssen Monnickendam, Holland        
63 27567 James Allan Royal Tay Y.C.        
64 43025 Chris Woodard Deben Y.C.        
65 41907 K. C. Price I.P.C. (Iver) Y.C.        
66 7406 R. V. Read Felpham S.C.        
67 19182 Nigel Price I.P.C. (Iver) Y.C.        
68 53435 A. Sawyer Northwich S.C.        
69 20342 Timothy Polglase Forwey Gallants S.C.        
70 36930 Trevor Roberts Pegasus S.C.        
71 28137 John Hope Redoubt S.C.        
72 23270 Peter Agnew Mounts Bay S. C.        
73 47565 Peter Vincent Exe S.C.        
74 27753 G. M. Pullen I.P.C. (Iver) Y.C.        
75 24000 I. B. Farr Mayflower S.C.        
76 31878 Mark Hassall Newquay S.C. (Wales)        
77 29105 Neil Cameron Fowey Gallants S.C.        
78 48000 Mike Chilcott Chew Valley Lake S.C.        
79 1682 A. Seaton Bexhill S.C.        
79 35701 Alex Pearce Kingsmead S.C.        
81 41245 Graham Bottoms Errwood S.C.        
82 26355 Diane Baty Dalgey Bay S.C.        
83 38960 Trevor Baker Arun Y.C.        
84 24926 Thomas Legrice Mounts Bay S.C.        
85 49665 Harry Taylor Worthing Y.C.        
86 33577 M. Emerson Middle Nene CC.        
87 37870 A. T. Dennis North Lincs S.C.        
88 25691 Graham Nicholls Pegasus S.C.        
89 27394 Ken Carter King George S.C.        
90 49688 George Matthews Frampton on Severn S.C.        
91 43223 Ken Gosling Sidmouth S.C.        
92 43008 D. S. Smith West Riding S.C.        
93 35567 A. E. Tinker West Riding S.C.        
94 13976 David Crookston Mumbles S.C.        
95 35375 P. McDonald South Yorkshire S.C.        
96 28174 David Hall Chew Valley Lake S.C.        
97 10988 H. C. Ellison Newquay S.C.        
98 28025 David Blyth Wilsonian S.C.        
99 47010 Mark Thomas Sidmouth S.C.        
100 30833 Nick Barnes Newquay S.C.        
101 28751 W. A. Wood Oxford S.C.        
101 12003 William Hastings Maidstone S.C.        
103 48779 Terry Castle Draycote Water S.C.
104 24855 Keith Clark West Riding S.C.
105 28587 Joe Hearn Torpoint Mosquito S.C.
106 32038 William Owen Restronguet S.C.
107 50803 Brian Watts Oxford S.C.
108 9018 R. J. Croft Bexhill S.C.
109 4658 C. W. J. Haughton Thorpe Bay Y.C.
110 28576 John Kervin Southport S.C.
111 46837 P. K. Woolf Penzance S.C.
112 33042 K. C. Major West Riding S.C.
113 38658 P. W. Auger Southampton S.C.
114 50950 D. W. Rood Errwood S.C.
115 39596 Julian Vickery I.P.C. (lver) Y.C.
116 12364 Norman Frier Bexley S.C.
117 40420 J. Barker Errwood S.C.
118 28833 M. R. Ecob Melton Mowbray S.C.
118 15196 Nigel S. Parriss Restronguet S.C.
120 28255 Charles Reynolds Mounts Bay S.C.
121 37989 W. F. Smith Lyme Regis S.C.
122 20028 Mrs J. Stenson Stokes Bay S.C.
123 48211 N. Ravenscroft Deben Y.C.
124 35341 Nigel Fowell Dudley Y.C.
125 35381 Jane Snell Barry Y.C.
126 42837 Paul Beacon Porthpean S.C.
127 14444 Marc Cooper Torpoint Mosquito S.C.
128 11119 Venetia Bradford Torpoint Mosquito S.C.
129 25001 Ginger Moore Dalgety Bay S.C.
130 46445 John Earp Draycote Water S.C.
131 11111 Sidney Morriss l.P.C. (Iver) IC.
132 46272 Miss F. A. Ravenscroft Deben Y.C.
133 38214 Alan Folland Newquay S.C.
134 477 J. E. Noden Northwich S.C.
135 33394 W. R. Scarfe Blackpool & Fleetwood Y.C.
136 48824 Linda Weighill Torpoint Mosquito S.C.
137 15287 Albert Ashcroft Sandwell Valley S.C.
138 37609 W. Brian Roberts Looe S.C.
139 41898 C. V. Courtenay-Stamp Exmouth S.C.
139 52325 S. J. Rood Errwood S.C.

 

SPECIAL AWARDS

       
Best Lady Helm 47585 Mrs. Deborah Evelyn Tynemouth S.C.
Best Welsh Helm 17342 Graham Ellis Gresford S.C.
Best under 19 Helm 48010 Mark Rushall Draycote Water S.C.
Best Local Junior 36950 C. Cleaves Newquay S.C.
Endeavour 28576 J. Kervin Southport S.C.
Furthest Travelled 2852 Grant Nicholls Melbourne, Australia
Single-handed 17342 Graham Ellis Gresford S.C.

 

Editors Note: Some of this article is from Reflections No. 26 October 1976, pages 10, 11, 13, 14 & 15. It has been captured by OCR, so typos & errors are possible.

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