Great report from France Open Skiff

THE FRENCH SKIFF OPEN
Lac du Der France
Easter Weekend 2014

A little background information . The Lac du Der is a very large lake, surrounded by a cycle path of approx. 25 miles. The racing takes place from the sailing school at Giffaumont. Adjacent to the school it is possible to park motorhomes or camp for the weekend. Within a ten minute walk there are caravans or chalets for hire. The sailing school itself is adjacent to a large accommodation block where it is also possible to stay and be fed. If you decide to self cater you need to bring all food with you. In the tiny hamlet of Giffaumont there is also a hotel and gites to hire.   

At the Station Nautique there are a couple of reasonably priced bars and restaurants, a tourist information and a two gift shops. It is an extremely pleasant place to stay and a very friendly event.

Now for the sailing!

This is a truly International event drawing sailors from nine different countries including, Great Britain, France, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark, Holland, Luxembourg, and Belgium.

For those who wished there were training sessions on Good Friday and Saturday morning. Racing was scheduled to start at 2.30pm on Saturday. There were seventy five boats on the start line, RS 100’s, RS 500’s, RS700’s, RS800’s, Musto Skiffs, 49er’s, 29er’s, Buzz, Laser 4000, D-One’s, PJ14, International14, B14 , and International Moths.

The races were designed as windward/leeward and there was one start for handicap racing. The first race took place in a Force 4/5 gusting North Easterly wind.Four laps were completed by the leaders and a lap average taken.

The race results:
1. Andy Jeffries. RS800. GB
2. David Hivey. RS800. GB
3. Ben Schooling. Musto Skiff GB
4. Alex Koukourakis IM and foil.
5. Mike Saul. RS500. GB

For the second race, a two lap race, the wind dropped to a Force 3/4. After one
general recall the race continued and resulted in:
1. Andy Jeffries. RS800. GB
2. Paul Dijksta. Musto Skiff
3. Ben Schooling. Musto Skiff. GB
4. Cedric Fraboulet. RS700
5. Matieu Guihot. RS700. 1
6. Alex Koukourakis IM and foil.

After the second race the first boats to finish came ashore thinking it was the end of racing for the day, only to discover that the Race Officer had other ideas so there was a mad scramble by some to relaunch. Others decided to have a beer! The third race started at 5.30pm and took a while in dropping wind. Results for the third race:
1. Mike Saul. RS 500. GB
2. Nicola Honor. RS 500. F
3. Mark Cotgrove. RS 100. D
4. David Hivey. RS800. GB
5. Alex Emanuel. RS500. F
6. Laurent Thouvenin RS 800.

The weather on Saturday had been grey, cloudy and chilly, however, Easter Sunday dawned a lovely Spring day with beautiful sunshine and wind from the South East. By midday it was like Summer. Racing began at 10.30am with the whole fleet competing after one general recall. The racing area was nearer to the centre of the lake to accommodate the wind direction. After the first lap the wind began to die. The first thirty boats finished but the rear were outside of the time limit. A second race was started. The wind was Force 1/2 but halfway up the beat it died completely. The water was like glass and the race was abandoned in favour of lunch. During the break the wind swung 180 degrees to due North an filled in to Force 2/3.

At 2.40pm the Race Officer held a briefing to discuss the racing for the afternoon. He had decided to race around the local numbered buoys starting at 3.30pm. The race started with reasonable wind. After about an hour the wind began to die. The fleet drifted around until the wind filled in with180 degree shift and allowed everyone to finish. (Not necessarily where they would like to have done!!).
1. Mike Saul. RS500. GB
2. Ben Schooling. Musto Skiff. GB
3. Nicolas Honor. RS 500. F
4. David Hivey. RS800. GB
5. Andy Jeffries. RS800. GB
6. Nicholas Duchoud. Musto Skiff. CH

The forecast for Easter Monday was rain and no wind. Several competitors took one look at the state of play early in the morning and decided to pack up and go home to do the decorating or the gardening!! However, the rain returned no more than a few spots and soon after the start of racing scheduled for 9.30 am the wind filled in. The race officer was fortunate and was able to complete three races and finish for the day by 1pm.

Final results were pleasing for Great Britain, especially for Mike Adams who finished in 9th place overall and came 2nd in the Eurocup winning a new tiller extension which he was delighted with as he had broken one on the Sunday.!!
The end results were:
1. Mike Saul. RS 500. GB
2. Ben Schooling. Musto Skiff. GB
3. Nicolas Honor. RS500. F
4. David Hivey. RS800. GB
5. Nicholas Duchoud. Musto Skiff. CH
6. Andy Jeffries. RS 800. GB

Come on 100 sailors……..join in next year!!

Report from the Adams family.

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