NS Optimist Dinghy Championships Contested Despite Ophelia

19 September/05

You canít stop keen sailors from competing! Despite the threat of tropical storm Ophelia, 18 young sailors competed for the NS Optimist Dinghy Championship at the Lunenburg Yacht Club this past weekend. The likelihood of poor weather kept some competitors away, but those that came were rewarded with a full weekend of competition as the storm passed through in the overnight hours on Saturday.
Optimist Dinghy competitors, who are from 8-15 years of age, were challenged on Saturday by very wet conditions as they raced on the waters of Princeís Inlet. Volunteers from the Lunenburg Yacht Club were able to run 4 races in winds from 8-12 knots from the east, and heavy rain. Mark Creaser, from Chester Yacht Club, and Ted Murphy, from Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron, established themselves as the ones to beat with 2 first place finishes each. Alex Mann and Eamonn Sullivan were the top finishers from the host club with a 5th and 6th place finish respectively on day one. Racing ended mid-afternoon after about 4 hours on the water as the weather was starting to deteriorate further and the competitors were getting cold and weary in the challenging conditions. A BBQ on shore revived everyone.

Sunday offered a much softer day. Once again, the Race Committee was able to set 4 races in the shifty north west to west breeze. The sailors skills were tested as they played the shifts and found which side of the course had more wind. Ted Murphy and Mark Creaser were consistently challenged by Jacob Chaplin-Saunders of RNSYS and Julien Fougere of Chester Yacht Club, but it was Ted Murphy, with 4 first place finishes on the day who sealed the championship. Local sailors Sam Eisener, Eamonn Sullivan and Alex Mann all had top 5 finishes during the dayís racing.

Overall results showed Ted Murphy winning the Championship for the second year in a row, Mark Creaser in second and Jacob Chaplin-Saunders in third. Optimist dinghy results are also scored according to age-group. White fleet (9-10) was won by Alex Mann, Blue fleet (11-12) by Mark Creaser, and Red fleet (13-15) by Ted Murphy. Green fleet, for less experienced racers, was won by Allison Surrette from RNSYS.

Submitted by:

Colin Mann
Primary Race Officer
NS Optimist Championships