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2016 Michael Bell Memorial Regatta

Saturday September 10th was the 3rd Michael Bell Memorial regatta for Ten Raters. A small but highly competitive fleet fronted up to Jackadder Lake with hopes of great wind and lots of sunshine. Well, it didn't quite work out that way, especially in the morning, when the wind was very light and shifty. Race Officer Rod Moss and his Assistants, Richard Fielder and Bob Paton did all they could to set courses and keep the racing moving.

The best laid plans unfortunately come unstuck from time to time, through no fault of the Organizers. The wind just would not co-operate and we chased our tails around for quite a while. There were a few races completed, but it was challenging.

Hub and Richard preparing the Diamond































Hub Bell was racing the Diamond of Richard Fielder and was enjoying the shifty winds. Hub understands the lake better than anybody, and it showed in some of his early results. Rosco Bennett was also fast out of the blocks as was Rob Mews and Roger Paul.


The fleet consisted mostly of Diamonds, with Robs NRW making up the fleet. The NRW is a light wind flyer, and Rob was making the most of his advantage. It soon became clear that the results of the day were going to be extremely close. Nobody was able to take the regatta by the scruff of the neck and put a choke hold on it.

We stopped for an early lunch to try and give the breeze a chance to come to the party. Fortunately, soon after lunch, the wind swung to the south west and built into a nice sailing wind. There were still plenty of shifts and holes to find, but the day turned out quite nicely. The forecast rain stayed away too.

Consistency was going to be the key again. Skippers could not afford to rack up too many lower placings if they wanted to stay in touch with the leaders. Soon after lunch, Glenn Dawson had made his way to the top of the leaderboard, but the margins between the top 5 boats were minimal.

Unfortunately, Hub suffered some damage to the fin, which was not able to be fixed, even with the good Captain Blackwire in attendance. Not for want of trying mind you.

One thing about racing Ten Raters - you never ever give up. The speed with which these boats travel, and the large differences in speed which can be experienced, means that even though you might be a fair way back in the fleet, there are opportunities to catch up and recover. The skipper who seemed to be making the best of his opportunities on the afternoon was Roger Paul. Roger came from behind in many races, but kept on plugging away. His score card started to look pretty good coming into the last two races.

So in the end, Roger Paul took out the event by two points from Glenn Dawson. Just a further two ponts back, Rob Mews held off Rosco Bennett in a countback - that's right folks, Rosco let Captain Blackwire beat him in a countback!

Final scores: Roger Paul 24, Glenn Dawson 26, Rob Mews 28, Rosco Bennett 28, Jeff Green 35, Hub Bell 49 and Denton Roberts on 58.

We would all like to thank Rod Moss, Bob Paton, Richard Fielder for looking after the on water race management and Andree Bennett and Ian Ritchie for looking after the scoring.

The afternoon concluded with the club's traditional after sailing drinks. Hub kindly donated the trophies and made a touching speech in memory of Michael.

Roger Paul wins the Michael Bell Memorial 2016



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