Balne Moor MBC Winter Series 24th January 2016

Having attracted a fleet of 16 boats for the first event in this new Series, hopes were high for this second event and nobody was disappointed.

22 skippers turned out and were rewarded with kind temperatures, a dry day and a pleasant breeze at Askern Lake.


To start the day, John Tushingham kindly delivered a Masterclass at the lake side, giving everyone some special insights into tuning the DragonForce for best results and several skippers commented on how helpful this had been, getting instant performance improvements.

When boats got on the water, this resulted in some very close racing – for second place with – guess who leading the way most of the time – he’s not National Champ for nothing!

The Lakeside Cafe proved once again to be an invaluable part of the facilities at Askern, serving an excellent lunch of stew and dumplings to those who had booked the meal deal during the lunch break in a day of 14 races.

John Tush took a clear overall win with John Sharman a good second and Chris More from the Wykeham club third.


After two events in this five event series, the overall positions are very interesting

1st John Tushingham (Keighley)

2nd John Sharman (Keighley)

3rd Chris More (Wykeham)

4th Geoff Quinn (Leeds & Bradford)

5th Jo Sharpe (Balne Moor)

However, with the John Tush away for at least the next event and John Sharman off touring Europe (in Hetty the Hymer) for the rest of the series, everything is still to play for.

Huge thanks to Cliff Jefferies for sterling work as OD and Paul Rudkin slaving over the results.

The next event will be on 7th February and we’re looking forward to another day of close racing at DN6 0JB.

West Lancs Winter Series 2

Although it was cold it was dry, much drier than the previous meeting where Noah floated by asking if we needed a lift. For the second of the West Lancs winter series we saw another good entry of 15 boats with several different faces from the first event and we reckoned that if everyone turned up we’d probably have a fleet of nearly 30 boats.  B rigs were the order of the day for the DF fleet.


Lets go this way!

As usual we were sharing the course with the RC laser skippers who numbered 13 and used a separate windward mark slightly further into the brisk South Easterly breeze.  Several skippers missed the briefing and sailed the wrong course in the first race which was an immediate discard for most, the second race was taken by John Brierley who has started to come of age in the Northern Fleet and he also took another bullet during the afternoon session. the rest of the morning races were taken by a Mr Tushingham of Ilkley apart from one which was taken by Tim Long right on the line. Tim should have had a couple more bullets but once in the lead of the race he found it difficult to maintain the form that had put him there, however he did string together a useful set of numbers during the day.

There are always a few incidents during the day with the DF’s chasing the Lasers around the course and often catching them too.  One unlucky skipper Joanne Sharpe seemed to see more damage than most and was dragged to the far side of the lake by a marauding Laser.  The size difference and controllability of the two boats does make for some interesting sailing, but it certainly keeps you on your toes when in close company.

West Lancs Mixed Fleet

Mixed fleet in a blow

There was a guest skipper, Mr Andy Kissick who hasn’t raced in 18 months and was over from the Channel Islands to visit family, he put on a good show but didn’t quite hit the mark however his results improved as the day went on. Another skipper who struggled last time out was Mike Parkington, who this time round had the measure of his boat and put some solid scores on the board throughout the day to finish fifth behind Tim Lanigan who didn’t count a score over 6th but in this competitive fleet it saw him finish fourth for the day. The top three were Tim Long on 25 points, tied with John Brierley also on 25 points, John took the second spot by virtue of two bullets to Tim’s one. Unsurprisingly John Tushingham took the top spot for the day which now sees him leading the series.

John Tush and Tim Long are away for the next one so the door is open for the top and bottom steps of the podium.

Rip(on) Roaring Good Time!

We’ve had a report from Ripon Sailing Club on their first DF65 open event which was held last weekend.  Sounds like they had fun, which is what it’s all about!

Ripon Sailing Club hosted its first ever DF65 open meeting on Saturday 9 January. The Club has a keen and enthusiastic fleet of DF 65 owners, all of whom are either current or former dinghy sailors.  As a result they all know how to sail but not necessarily how to get the best out of a radio controlled model yacht. The forecast was not particularly encouraging and as predicted it did indeed rain until lunchtime but then the sun came out for a while.  Ten visitors joined four local DF65 sailors for what turned out to be a most enjoyable day’s racing.

Anybody who has ever sailed at Ripon SC will know that though the Club has an attractive lake and excellent Clubhouse the wind can be somewhat unpredictable if it is not from a favourable direction. Fortunately it was southerly, probably the best direction possible, and though it varied in strength during the day, as the rain came and went, it varied for everyone at the same time.  This does not always happen!  With a course set in the narrower part of the lake right next to the Clubhouse  sailors were able to get a good, elevated view of the all of the buoys from the firm footing of the patio – a definite benefit given how wet and potentially slippery any grass surfaces are after the wet winter we are experiencing.

Twelve races were sailed and there was no doubt as to the winner of the event, with John Tushingham (Keighley) winning all the races he sailed. Though he was challenged a time or two he was never under any real threat. In the first race local sailor Jim Haddock led for almost the whole of the first lap of a two lap race until he took the leeward mark the wrong way and 8 places melted away while he unwound himself. The only other real challenge for the lead in the following races came from Chris More (Scarborough) who lead until the final, short beat in one race, only to be overtaken in the last few yards. He was though a clear 2nd overall races with a string of 2nd and 3rd places to his credit. Behind these two several people had the odd good race (often interspersed with the odd shocker) and the best of the rest was Norman Rowley (Weecher) who was consistently in or close to the top three to take 3rd overall.

Results are on the Club’s website here: Results

First of the Balne Moor MBC Winter Series

The 9th & 10th January was a weekend of firsts in Yorkshire.

7 of the skippers who’d competed in Ripon SC’s first DF65 Open made the starting lineup the following day for Balne Moor’s first yachting Open (DF65 & RG65), including Dave Darwell (Balne Moor MBC) who got his DF from Santa two weeks earlier and has now sailed in his first two Open events.

A total of 16 skippers were blessed with a lovely sunny chill morning. A good breeze at the top end of ‘A’ rig all day made for some great racing.

After 14 races, John Tush ran out a clear winner with John Sharman an excellent second and John Bush, sailing a (borrowed) DF for the first time taking third place.

Big thanks to the race team for a most enjoyable day and with four more in the series as follows there’s plenty of opportunity left to enjoy this excellent new venue:

January 24th

February 7th & 21st

March 6th

For NoR and other details, please contact Balne Moor MBC

Racing this weekend and first results.

The first of the West Lancs winter series got off to a good start despite a real stinker of a day weather wise. 14 DF65’s turned out and completed ten races before the skippers declared enough and retired to the clubhouse for a cup of tea and a mince pie. John Tushingham took the win with John Brierley and Tim Lanigan in second and third spots. No photos as it rained too much but here is a photo of a damp results sheet!


This coming weekend sees two events taking place up North with an open event at Ripon Sailing Club on Saturday and the first of the Winter series at Askern lake near Doncaster hosted by Balne Moor MBC.

Details of both events and how to enter are posted on the Events page.