37 Teras split almost equally between Pros and Sports arrived at Brightlingsea Sailing club on Saturday to see a falling tide but a pleasant breeze and loads of sunshine. The fleet was divided into four groups and distributed amongst the coaches from the Tera Eastern training team. They went out in the morning to practice starts, line holding and downwind skills and a lot of reservoir sailors quickly found out what tide and waves skills they needed to master. After a quick lunch the afternoon focused on more skills training and practice races.
Sunday dawned grey and damp with a much fresher breeze and the Teras, whose home clubs spread from Lymington and Frensham Pond all the way to Aldeburgh, set out for the four race open meeting. The racing was punctuated by many capsizes with many sails coming back in with a nice Essex mud decoration at the top.
In the Sports Matt Taylor (Alton Water) was imperious winning every race, but there was close racing between Josh Davis (Brightlingsea/Alton Water) Will Caron (Alton Water) and Tristan Richardson (Royal Hospital School) who were really close at the finish in all of the races. There was great sailing throughout this fleet with no one giving up easily and loads of small sailors showing tremendous drive and grit.
The Pros were very close indeed; the first race being won easily by James Oakley (Brightlingsea) who then suffered from a capsize in race two that hurt his results, Matt Smith (Brightlingsea/Alton Water) suffered from the sheath of his mainsheet failing during the first race which significantly delayed his second start as a borrowed painter was turned into an emergency mainsheet. Pros were racing really hard and most capsized in the choppy waters at least once. In the end it was a close fight between Matt Smith, Will Caiger (Bewl Valley) and Dylan Colingbourne (Burnham) and places were divided by one point and count back.
Thanks must go to Sarah Bines who was both OOD and lead coach on Saturday, the other Eastern coaches, the sailing club (and its fantastic catering) and all of the parents who helped too. Many of the competitors were impressed too with the boat handling of the huge wind turbine support catamarans who waited for their races to finish before they came through the race area.
The event was sponsored by Tom Branton of SailMedic and the new class sponsors Osper who provided the spot prizes for both fleets.
The next Eastern event is at Burnham Sailing Club on 15th/16th August - entry will be with the club directly