Keith Atkinson

153 sailors turned out to race last weekend 6th & 7th June for Round Two of The UKWA Inland National Championships & The Rya National Junior Championships 2009 and the Rutland Marathon at Whitwell, Rutland Water.

With all eyes on a less than promising weather forecast the competitors made themselves at home at one of the most popular venues used by the UKWA and RYA. The forecast was giving a maximum of 10 knots for the weekend rain and more rain.

Saturday greeted competitors with overcast skies and a light chilly breeze, however as the time to race approached the wind began to fill in and all fleets went afloat. On the main course the race officer ran 2 rounds of racing for all fleets in the morning session. After lunch as the wind built a further two rounds of extremely exciting course racing for all fleets (techno one) with the wind building to 23 knots made the forecast look a little foolish.

On the junior course race officer Mike Roberts had 48 juniors racing to become 3.5, 4.5 & 5.5 National Champions for 2009. Mike ran two races before lunch and a further 2 races in the afternoon session. The juniors raced is a more sheltered area of the lake but still experienced challenging conditions, it was to the credit of their ability that so many finished the course still smiling and enjoying their racing.

At approximately 4.30pm the 2009 Rutland marathon began with all fleets including the junior sailors starting together. It was decided to sail the course clockwise so competitors began by racing towards the dam wall. With the wind gusting between 10 and 20 knots several competitors retired but the vast majority battled around the course in good time, with the winner finishing in 44 minutes.

1st Keith Atkinson(formula)
2nd Tim Gibson (formula)
3rd George Bowles (RS:X)

On Saturday night there was the Marathon Prize giving hosted by Debbie Smith from action for children who gave a moving speech, about the charity and how the money raised by competitors would be spent. Debbie will be moving areas soon and expressed her gratitude to the UKWA for all the support given to the Charity over the years she has been associated with the Rutland Marathon and hoped that we would continue to support them in the future. Following the prize giving the ever-popular Rutland Raffle was held with many prizes given by the trade supporters.

Sunday morning saw some of the heaviest rain to fall at an event for many years. Whilst the sailors were reluctant to get wet the more serious issue was the thunder and lightning, with flashes above the lake racing was suspended on safety grounds. It took the best part of three hours to clear the weather front but after lunch the race officers managed to hold two rounds of racing on both courses. The wind was light and extremely cold for June but it had been worth persevering for all fleets except formula.

Thanks to Rutland Water Sports Centre for making us so welcome, the rescue crews, the race officers and their teams, the admin staff, the scorer and all those volunteers who helped set up break down the site after the event.

Thanks to Boardwise, course race sponsors and to Overboard (a new sponsor for the UKWA) for all the product prizes at this event

Thanks to Boardwise, Oxendon Trailers, Nik Baker, Noble Marine Insurance, Holmfields, Windsurf Magazine, Charlie Money, 3s Concepts, Tushingham Sails, Rutland Water Sports, Demon Sails, Dave Nobles, The MWA, Trevor Steels Trailers, Rednemesisdog, Mex Homes Limited, Riks Windsurfing, Neil Pryde, Scottish Newcastle and Overboard for supporting the Rutland Marathon Action For Children T Shirt 2009.

13 Techno 3.5
1st Issac Bradley-Baker
2nd Guy Carney
3rd Ross Warren

16 Techno 4.5
1st Harry Davis
2nd Sarah Labourne
3rd Daniel Wilson

19 Techno 5.5
1st Robert Griffiths
2nd Fynn Page
3rd Jack Hawkins

19 Raceboards
1st Mark Kay
2nd Robert Kent
3rd Chris Gibson

18 RS:X
1st Ali Masters
2nd George Bowles
3rd Tom Eskdale

54 Techno
1st 6.8 Kieran Martin
2nd 6.8 Adam Purcell
3rd 6.8 Saskia Sills
1st 7.8 Sam Sills
2nd 7.8 Matt Brown
3rd 7.8 Joe Bennett

13 Formula
1st Keith Atkinson
2nd Liam Round
3rd Tim Gibson

1 Freerace
1st Lee Hayes


SOURCE: UK Windsurfing