St Ouen's one-two in first Inter-Parish Round Island Yacht Race

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Nine yachts, representing six parishes, took part in the inaugural Inter-Parish Round-The-Island Race hosted by St Helier Yacht Club and sponsored by Jersey Electricity on Sunday, with St Ouen’s taking first and second places overall. Although David Myatt’s Erica was first across the line having just held off Trinity’s Abracadabra, once the handicaps were taken into account, 2Farr, one of the slower Class 2 boats skippered by Jeff Speller,  took overall honours in a time of 6hrs 34mins: 05 secs. St Saviour’s Tom Bombadil skippered by Steve Manning was third.

JE Operations Director Mark Preece presented the prizes at an evening reception in StHYC, with Jeff taking the new trophy back to St Ouen’s Parish Hall for display for a year.

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The yachts, all crewed by members of their Parishes started in a force 3- 4 north easterly breeze and rounded the Demi de Pas lighthouse on the way to the Violet Buoy off La Rocque. In Class 1, yachts that stayed further north did best. Trinity’s Abracadabra, with Deputy Hugh Raymond on board, reached the buoy first, closely followed by St Helier’s Grace, skippered by Bob Milner, and David Myatt’s Erica. In Class 2, 2Farr, again taking a more northerly route came out ahead.

All the yachts progressed quickly up the east coast to St Catherine’s but on rounding the breakwater on the way to Rozel the wind died. In the leading group, Erica managed to take the lead by staying further offshore whilst in Class 2, Tom Bombadil (St Saviour) did well going inshore.

The sail along the north coast was very slow in the light airs but once the yachts rounded Grosnez the wind increased for a quick reach down to Corbiere and a beat along the south coast. Here the tide was running against the boats and it now paid to keep inshore to keep out of the strongest current.

Erica managed to keep ahead of Abracadabra to the line, with Grace finishing third but 2Farr and Jeff Speller took the trophy back to St Ouen.

The race was the brainchild of former StHYC Commodore Steve Pearl who said: ‘We already run two or three round-the-Island races a year but we’ve never before a had an inter-Parish competition and we are very grateful to Jersey Electricity for making it happen and hope to make it an annual event.’

Results:

1 2Farr Jeff Speller (St Ouen) 6:34:05
2 Erica David Myatt (St Ouen) 6:35:07
3 Tom Bombadil Steve Manning (St Saviour) 6:40:26
4 Sombrero  (St Helier) 6:50:31
5 Paper Tiger Peter Crabb (St Lawrence) 6:50:38
6 Abracadabra Rhys Perkins (Trinity) 6:52:03
7 Almecha Steve Pearl 7:24:36
8 Grace Bob Milner (St Helier) 7:28:54
9 Princess Leia David Langlois 7:57:50

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