Etchells Bedrock Trophy 2023 Cowes.
Six races were scheduled for the Etchells Bedrock Trophy 2023, Race Officer Ian Bullock from the Royal Southern Yacht Club decided with Sunday racing potentially being sailed in little or no breeze that four races should sailed on the Saturday to guarantee a series. With many boats still travelling back from the Etchells Worlds in Miami it was good to see 11 boats make the start line.
In Saturdays light North Easterly breezes the course was set only 3/4 nm with a long spreader leg length to try and allow for the flooding tide that was flowing strongly along the Hillhead shore and across the course.
The Solent winds from the North Shore always guarantee shifty conditions, and that was what the fleet encountered. Rob Goddard Rocketman GBR 1439 played the shifts to great advantage in race 1 to lead at every mark.
While with a short course the start is normally so important, yet selecting the right place to tack for pressure and sailing angle can make great differences, and it was the solo OCS starter, Andy Lawson on No Dramas GBR 1490, who, after restarting and clearing the line, had free air to use wind shifts to his best advantage, winning race 2.
Race 3, the fleet started in dropping pressure and crews were no longer continually sat to windward, and the boat with 2 seconds so far, Jolly Roger GBR1352 sailed by Bruno Van-Dyke moved up a gear, taking the win and the overall lead from Andy Lawson.
Race four we started to see the pressure fade again, but holding just enough to race, and Jolly Roger stamped their authority on the regatta with their second win in trying conditions, where the fleet concertinaed with places changing frequently behind both Van-Dyke and Lawson in second.
As the forecast conditions, and as the PR0, Ian Bullock anticipated, Sunday, there was no sailing, so Jolly Roger sailed by, Bruno, Van-Dyke, Matt Reid, and Matt Hannaby are the 2023 Bedrock Trophy winners, with Andy Lawson, Hamish Mackay and Billy Russell, on No Dramas, the Corinthian winners. The first youth boat was Ziggy with Jack Lewis, Morgan Smith, Rebecca Lewis and AJ Luxton.
Etchells Fleet thanks not only go out to the hard-working race committee team, but also new Etchells vice-captain David Maclean who organised along with the Cowes Corinthian Yacht Club, a great supper and drinks on the Saturday evening.