Budworth Sailing Club welcomed visitors from West Kirby and South Staffs to this year’s Firefly Open, and sailing began in a light and shifting southerly breeze that proved a testing challenge for both locals and visitors alike.
In the first race, the shifts came especially fast and wide, rewarding quick reactions and a constant tactical awareness. After a few laps of intense racing (with much place changing), Keith & Chloe Macaulay (SSSC/CUCC) drew ahead, successfully holding off repeated challenges from the West Kirby boat of Trevor Jenkins & Sally Bromilow. Local sailors Nick & Emily Whelan got the shifts right at the finish, snatching second place.
In race 2, Jenkins/Bromilow led a tightly packed fleet in the early stages, but as the wind strengthened and veered, the Macaulays climbed their way up to the front and held the lead from the pursuing West Kirby boats. A closely fought last beat ended with the Macaulays first, Jon Hayley & Pat Bromilow second, and locals Steve Hayward & Liza Korikova in third.
Race 3 began in the strongest wind of the day – this suited Hugh Smallman & Deborah Love of Budworth, who for the early laps held the lead in the only wooden boat of the fleet. In the end though, it was the Macaulays who sealed their victory with another emphatic first place, untroubled by a wind that shifted and dropped to a zephyr. Hayley/Bromilow came in second, with Smallman/Love third.
With no sign of the wind returning, the fleet abandoned hopes of a fourth race and an early prize-giving was held, with worthy winners Keith and Chloe Macaulay awarded the Budworth Bucket Trophy for the second year running.
Many thanks to the Budworth members who gave their support to the event, with special thanks to Dawn Savell for the delicious lunch, and most of all to PRO Chris Allen for his flawless race management.
Firefly Fleet Captain