DF95 Summer 2024 #5 – 13/7/24

We arrived to a  westerly light breeze, which comes generally from the top left hand end of the lake and the houses and provides the typical Gautby road conditions. Enough shifts to tax the patience and skills of the 6 helms on the starting line, numbers were lower than usual due to a date clash with IOM event, holidays and illness.
The threatening rain stayed away for the majority of the first session and very timely, persisted down when lunch was taken, good planning by the RO for the day Neil Westbrook. Neil kept us on our toes with a number of early starters getting called back.
The course was set, with the start line at the club end, a beat up to the top right hand corner (to port), to a spreader mark (to port) Down the full length of the lake to a gate and a beat back up the lake to the finish halfway up.
Racing was extremely competitive from the start with the whole fleet scoring either a first  or second during the 12 race series, and in most races the lead changed hands on more than one occasion, thanks to the shifts.
Seven, 1 lap races were sailed in the morning session and with the wind dying and rain threatening a break for coffee was called by Neil, which was a great shout as 2 mins later the heavens opened for about 20min. At the half way stage Alan was leading the way with 4 wins, chased by a group containing Clive (2 wins) and Andrew (1 win). After race 6 Andrew had a play with Martins setup which saw Martin leap up the running order and fighting it out at the front. Meanwhile John and Dave were also having moments of inspiration but without consistency
After the lunch break the rain subsided and the wind improved a little but there were still a lot of shifts to trap even the best helms. The racing was even tighter than the morning especially for Martin with his new setup and resulting speed. But there was no stopping Aln who followed up his morning success with 4 straight wins, only stopped by Clive who took the last race honours, racing was very tight throughout the fleet with many duals being fought all the way to the line, Andrew sailed very consistently with a string of 2nds and 3rds.  Photos courtesy of Dave Wlliams.
The final standings after 12 races, 2 discards
1.   Alan Watkinson                       23     12pts        8 wins
2.   Clive Warren                            93     26pts        3 wins
3.   Andrew Peter                         179     28pts        1 win
4.   David Williams                       33      36pts
5.   John Beech                             288     40pts
6.   Martin Withington Jones   77     43pts  (only 9 races sailed)


DF65 Social Racing 2024 – 3/7/24

Nine sailors today and just a light breeze from the top of the lake on arrival. Racing started at 11.00am, and by 11.45 we had managed just two races. The normal course was sailed but with using existing marks a long distance spreader. All the starts were well disciplined as to be called over would have been a disaster.

John Carlin led the first race and looked to be on for a certain win until he sailed into a hole, allowing the following boats to catch him with Alan taking his first of two wins. Such was the unpredictability of the wind that two of the races had photo finishes between four boats. After three races and the light wind dropping to zero at times, a final race was decided to enable one discard. Even so, three skippers still had had enough and retired.

  1. Alan Watkinson   4pts 2wins
  2. Dave Williams      6.2pts 1win
  3. Richard Walker   9pts 1win
  4. Frans King             9pts
  5. Charles Legg         9.2pts
  6. John Carlin            15pts
  7. Malcolm Harvey 15.2pts
  8. Paul Little              18pts
  9. David White          23pts

Due to a lack of cooperation from the wind to produce anything to sail with, DF95 racing was cancelled.

BRSPC Club Statement – Fish Deaths at Gautby Road Lake

This recent event is not the result of any actions by the club.
We only apply a D.E.F. R.A. approved natural dye called ‘ Lake Shadow ‘,
manufactured by Dyofix (see www.dyofix.co.uk/commercial-pond-dyes/)  and which is also used by many lakes and fisheries to reduce algae and improve water quality.  This has been used just twice this year, the last application was on 25th May.

The Environment Agency attribute the pr0blem to the recent hot weather and high temperatures, with too many large fish and not enough oxygen in a lake which is very shallow and has no cover from intense sunlight. It is not suitable as a fishing lake.

According to a report from the Environment Agency local Fisheries Officer;
“Unfortunately this is a natural occurrence at this time of year, and we are seeing more and more Oxygen Crashes. The dye will certainly help the situation in terms of controlling the algae and has no effects on fish.”

Wirral Council staff have now cleared the lake and surrounds of dead fish.

DF/RG65 Summer 2024 – 29/6/24

Five entrants for the RG65/Df65 race with the DF65 of John Pritchard co-opted into the RG class even though sailing with his A+ rig With a very light wind from the Clubhouse end the usual course was sailed but only one lap.

John B, was soon into his stride, easily taking the first two races. Then the wind swung around 180 degrees. This seemed to favour Alan who had a few good starts and was usually up to the windward mark first but then the experience of John B came through especially downwind. Due to the holes in the wind at times the other four boats ended up together on the last leg creating a few photo finishes.

John P unfortunately ran out of battery power for the final races after scoring a well deserved win after John B caught a submerged bag. With the rain settling in, still little wind and with eight races completed, it was decided enough was enough. Thanks to Dave H for his stint as RO for the races after dinner.

  1. John Brierley        84    6pts 7 wins
  2. Alan Watkinson  23    12pts
  3. Charles Legg         26   18pts
  4. Dave Williams      33    21pts
  5. John Pritchard      94   23pts 1 win

DF65 & DF95 Social Racing 2024 – 26/6/24


The forecast was for a hot, hot day at the lake but at least we were promised some wind.  The existing mark positions were deeemed suitable for a standard one lap windward/leeward course with the breeze blowing down the lake from the clubhouse and so we managed to get started very soon after 11:00 with 10 sailors each taking it in turns to be RO for 10 races completed by 13:00.

Peter managed to get clean away in race one as nobody else seem to spot the left shift that arrived shortly before the start and give him the first of four consecutive wins, only interrupted when he acted as RO allowing Paul P to take his first win.  The top 4 or 5 slots were keenly contested with Paul P, Mike DSP, John C and Alan all achieving podium spots, although after a difficult firstrace, John C was looking good and consistent.  After Race 5, the race wins were shared between John C (3), Paul P (1) and Peter (1).

Peter helped a number of sailors to adjust their boat settings after some difficult races and the fleet then seemed to be more compact  with some good tight racing.

Peter took the morning with his 5 wins, closely followed by Mr Consistent John C with 3 wins and then Mike DSP in a creditable third and had no wins.

  1. Peter Baldwin              63  10pts
  2. John Carlin                    11   13pts
  3. Mike DSP                       35  19pts
  4. Paul Plested                 54  20pts
  5. Alan Watkinson        373  29pts
  6. Neil Westbrook           03  33pts
  7. Charles Legg                21   40pts
  8. Paul Little                      45  43pts
  9. Dave Howard               00  45pts
  10. Malcolm Harvey     1019  55pts


There was a little less wind for the nine DF95 sailors, but still more than enough to give decent racing for nine sailors in the A rig.  Unfortunately though, the wind had started to veer more towards the South and so the beat could turn out to be nearly a fetch, but mostly needed some deft tacking in the shifts to make the best gains to a revised windward mark closer to the shore.  we were joined this week by visitor Paul Shepherd where this was only his second time on the water. Again we took it in turns to be RO and completed 9 races.

After the first race where Paul P finished a close second to Peter, he unfortunately had to drop out for the day with electrical issues.  This left eight sailors to complete the afternoon, with much rig tweaking, advice and adjustment to suit the conditions.

It was also Peter’s afternoon in the 95 after his sucesses in the morning, with only Alan taking a win from him, with Martin picking up the other win whilst Peter was RO.  Alan and Neil were having a good tussle, which looked to be going Neil’s way for second place, until battery failure enforced him to sit out the final two races.

Close racing again, with much to be gained or lost depending upon how you managed to deal with the shifts and gusts that came down the course, with some of them not always being predictable or long lasting!

  1. Peter Baldwin           172    6pts
  2. Alan Watkinson         23   13pts
  3. Neil westbrook           03   16pts
  4. Martin W-J                  77   21pts
  5. Paul Little                     14   24pts
  6. Dave Howard               00  26pts
  7. Malcolm Harvey     2019  33pts
  8. Phil Shepherd              49  40pts