Allen Sailing OK UK National Championships

Ned WintersTony ElgarTerry CurtisGavin PoulloinNick FramptonTeam Weymouth

After 2 ½ years of waiting, including planning twice for the event; Weymouth SC finally got to host the 2021 (delayed from 2020) OK UK National Championship. With the attraction of the OK World Championship in Lyme Regis in 2023, 45 boats, including a number of high-profile professional, amateur, an Americas cup sailor, and 5 Weymouth Oks, gathered in the club yard on Thursday 5th August ready for 4 days of some great sailing in the bay.

Thursdays forecasts of 25-35knt SSE with heavy showers did nothing to put off the race team and all the competitors to try and go sailing. However, after waiting around in our sailing gear all afternoon, and the Race officer sat out in Viking for 4 hours trying to find somewhere suitable to sail, the decision was finally made around 4pm to abandon the day and head to the club house for what was going to be the highlight of the weekend for most, some great food and beer provided by the club.

Friday, and with 30knt+ SW forecasted all day, the Race team again ventured out on Viking more in hope than expectation. With no suitable lee to be found in the bay, the decision was made early to abandon the days sailing. Many of the competitors took the opportunity to venture and explore the delights of a sunny, but windy Weymouth, before the club arguably put on the main event of the weekend, the Class meal. The club house team really step up for this one, and provided a perfect sit down three course meals for 47 people. Top off by myself winning the “dick of the day” prize for organizing a great national, but with no sailing!

Saturday morning arrived and with favorable forecast, well 25knt SW, with big squalls, and up to four races scheduled from 10:30, a few people in the dinghy park were regretting the night before. The Race team managed to get the fleet underway on time, and 34 boats ventured out in the challenging conditions. Two races were sailed in the morning before a huge squall of 35knt+ and no visibility forced the fleet ashore after race two. After a few hours wait, a spot of lunch and a recharge, 24 boat ventured back out in the sunshine and still 25knt + for race three. The race team called it a day after 3 races and some very tired bodies, both sailors and volunteers, enjoyed another great evening of hospitality in the club.

Sunday morning and the small matter of two more races in yet again 25-30knt SW to sail. On the Saturday, Finn squad member, and Giles Scotts training Partner, Henry Wetherell had shown the OK master (and most other dinghy classes) Nick Craig the way around. However, there was lots of places still to be settled, including the inter club battels between myself and Terry Curtis, and Tony Elgar and Ned Winters. Plus, some pride to restore from Nick Frampton, after gear failure on the Saturday forced him home early. At the end of the Day, Terry Curtis had impressively sailed his way up to 4th overall, and all but one of the Weymouth boats finished inside the top 20, giving Weymouth Sailing the team prize for the event.

A huge thank you has to go to all the volunteers who helped through the weekend, both on and off the water. I have received nothing but praise from all the competitors and the Association on how we managed to run such a successful event over such a challenging weekend.

The results can be found here:

Lots of Picture taken by Richard Bowers Photography can be found here:

Gavin Poulloin
Dinghy Class Captain.

Submitted on Thursday, 12th August