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Hugh’s Amsterdam iShares Cup 2009

over 8 years ago by Hugh Styles | permanent link | comments (0)

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This weekend saw the 5th in the series of the iShares cup events, I was racing the iShares Extreme 40 as mainsheet man. We had a good event, even though the day before the regatta started we lost our bow man, Adam Piggott to a badly sprained Ankle, which meant he missed the Dutch event and will also miss the last event Almeria.

This was a big set back less than 12 hours before the start of the first race, but fortunately we were able to get a great replacement in the form of 49er Olympic sailor Paul Campbell James (Paul has steered Extreme 40 catamarans in the past, at Cowes week last year). This left us with a steep learning curve but after a bit of Saturday morning practice the team gelled nicely.

The event went fairly well for us seeing as it was a new team dynamic and we had plenty of good races. Saturday night we were 4th overall having had some great wins in some races on the Friday and Saturday. Unfortunately the last 2 races were not so good for us a collision when we were in the right which we got disqualified from and we dropped back to 6th overall on the Sunday. All in all a great event and I was unexpectedly really enjoyed the tough and close quarters racing in the ‘Dam’, usually we race there with a lot of apprehension as it a crash waiting to happen normally.

Now back in Weymouth getting the world straight, with plans for the winter and organising charter opportunities for people in the Asian Extreme Sailing Series, which is going to happen in the end of this year and early in 2010.

The next event is this coming weekend in the blackwater Essex, sailing the F18 and then off to Almeria for the next Extreme 40 event.

Cheers.

Hugh


Other images included with this entry..

Contrasting conditions for Dutch F18 Nationals

over 8 years ago by Hugh Styles | permanent link | comments (0)

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The weekend of the 19 and 20 september saw a day of light and dying wind with only 2 races sailed and a third abandoned as the fleet ran out of the time limit. Sunday by contrast saw a building breeze and twin wiring for all of the 4 races.

The shifty conditions were tough to gauge and on Saturday it was `Darren Bundock and Will Howden who played the conditions the best with both races in the top three, and holding the overall led over night, with second Mischa Heemskerk and Bastian Tenteij, with one race win and a 5th place to count, then third overall, Koen De Koning and Tyse Visser, with Styles and Van West in 6th overall.

Sunday with more wind saw a new team come to the fore, in the shape of Olivie Backes and Arnot Garlegan from France, who sailed a great day and no result outside of the first 2 finishing positions, moved them onto the podium. It was then a fight for the overall title between Heemskerk and Bundock, which went the way of the Dutch man as Bundock didn’t have the best of the first 2 races and couldn’t quite match the speed of the Dutch on the downwind legs. De Koning had a mixed day with a win and then some around the top 5, and managed to clinch 4th overall, with 5th overall and finishing strongly Styles and Van West.

For several of the teams the next event is the Extreme 40 regatta in Amsterdam next weekend, and then back in the UK Styles will have the UK Inlands in 4 weekends time.

Many thanks to the sponsors, Nacra Europe, Boskalis, Marlow Ropes, Gill, Tacktick, Holt, Towergate Mardon Insurance.

Team Styles and Piggott claim a podium position at Dutch f18 Nationals

over 9 years ago by Hugh Styles | permanent link | comments (0)

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2nd overall at the Dutch Nats was a great way to end the international 2008 F18 racing season, after a great worlds in Spain earlier this year coming 5th.

Hugh Styles and Adam Piggott reaffirmed their winning ways in the breeze as they claimed 2 of the 7 races as out right victories over the rest of a strong 50 fleet of F18’s sailing from Medemblik Holland.

Racing was this weekend Saturday and Sunday. With the wind Easterly at between 13 and 20 knots,it provided some great conditions for sailing F18’s. With brilliant blue sky, sun and windy conditions, both days were near perfect for the event.

The team won the 1st and last races and, but for some bad luck they would have been even closer to nailing the title for the overall event.

This is the last of the international events which the team will do this season and it was great to finish on a high note.

Hugh commented” its been a great season sailing with Adam, we’e shown some blistering speed in the windier conditions. We had a few mistakes this weekend because we were a little rusty. Not having sailed since the f18 worlds in July. But the high’s like winning the races were really fantastic.”

There is one event left in the UK calendar in October the inlands. Other than that Hugh will be in Aus over the winter and will be doing some F18 racing down there.

Team Styles and Piggott want to thank all of their sponsors and supporters. Without their help this success would not have been possible.
Tacktick
Nacra Europe
Fat Face
Gill
Marlow Ropes
Sailing Networks

Skippering iShares X40 Kiel

over 9 years ago by Hugh Styles | permanent link | comments (0)

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Wow what an event Kiel has been. It was fantastic to be performing to a crowd, fly by’s were great fun and it was great to have the crowd cheering us on as we raced round the turning mark just off the beach.

For the ishares team its been a tough event, as in so many races we felt like we had started well and were good as we came towards the first mark. But for a few reasons we struggled to convert this into actual results.

We had some good training before the event against team Origin. We thought we could gain more out of the rig setup, so changed this and unfortunately it back fired. Once we reset the boat we were much faster and easier to accelerate out of boat handling situations.

Day 3 of the regatta, the Sunday was the best day for us, with some good solid race results to start with in the first few races. This set the standard for us and we fought tooth and nail, in the 16th and 17th races where we had some bad luck, to keep climbing the leaderboard.

This got us to the final 18th double point race and all to play for. We won the start at the starboard end of the line and extended on the fleet. Coming into mark one we were in the lead, with JPMorgan second. An issue with the spinnaker furler cost us the lead and by the bottom mark we were on the heels of JPMorgan, with another 2 laps to go. We waited patiently for another lap and then pounced as they had a really bad leeward mark rounding, getting inside their line and then extending up the next 2 legs to cross the finish line as the clear winners of the last race of the regatta, double points and great to finish off the regatta on a real high note! One of the boys on the team commented “your only as good as your last race, so watch out in Amsterdam!!” as we crossed the line.

Thanks to iShares, and all the partner sponsors, without whom we would not have been here and would not have this fantatic event to race in.

All the best.

Hugh

Garda Centomiglia

over 10 years ago by Hugh Styles | permanent link | comments (0)

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Yesterday was the first time for me racing the centomiglia race100km of long distance
race on lake garda in the north of Italy. Wow what an amazing place, huge mountains
come down to the waters edge with sheer cliffs. At the top of the cliffs in one section
you can see some crazy Italians have built houses which perch atop the sheer cliff.

We raced in the most awesome of conditons, 25 knots on the nose just after the start
and steep chopppy waves which felt like brick walls to the iShares Extreme 40 I was racing on.

The conditions worsened as we went further up the lake, and all of a sudden the main halyard
blew and at the same time the jib sheet blew off the clew. Maybe game over but no we fixed it reefed
the main and off again.

This meant we could continue but had been a setback and lost us ground to the eventual winner
Tommy Hilfiger Extreme 40. The wind died through the rest of the race and we maintained our
position to the finish, and a 2nd for the first attampt for the Centomiglia regatta.

Not bad for a first attempt and lots more fun to be had if we do it again next year.

Ciao for now Hugh

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