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Great Britain, OK Northern Area Champs 2007

Leigh & Lowton, 10-11 November

The OK Northerns took place at Leigh & Lowton with a turnout of 12 boats from as far afield as Norfolk & Essex, joining the small but growing Northern OK fleet.  A slightly low turnout, but not bad for a freezing weekend in November!

Conditions on Saturday were fantastic with a gusty force 5-6 making for some exhilarating sailing.  Upwind was hard work but sailors were rewarded downwind as Gareth the race officer had laid perfect downwind angles to provide some superb reaches.  The vicious gusts made for survival conditions at times with only Mike Edwards & Nick Craig not taking a cold capsize.

Craig won all 3 races but both Terry Curtis & Jon Fish led races to score 4,2,2 and 2,6,3 respectively.  Light wind specialist Neil Goodhead almost found his toestraps to score 7,5,4 to complete the top 4 overnight.

Thanks to a gruelling day, Saturday night was quiet by OK standards with everyone in bed by 1am after some beer & curry thanks to the hospitality of Mike & Kath Edwards.

Sunday was more gentle with a shifty force 2-3.  Curits has to miss the days sailing due to a severe “bug” he had picked up (that or turning 40 has reduced his beer tolerance!)  Leading female sailor Mike Edwards showed great downwind speed to push Craig hard in the 1st race and come back after a poor start in the 2nd race to finish 2nd and claim 2nd overall.  Fish briefly led the last race but could not hold off Edwards to finish 3rd overall.  Daz Prior had his best race yet in an OK pulling through to 2nd for a couple of laps before a capsize on a tack, but he will clearly be seen at the front of the fleet again.  Keith Byers sailed a consistent series of top 5 results to finish 4th overall.  Top effort went to Ben Steel who put his boat back together after windy Saturday to push some very experienced sailors hard on the Sunday, all at the age of 16 – he will be a leading contender for next years OK juniors!

OK Northern Area Champs 2007 - Results
1Nick Craig4Frensham Pond
2Mike Edwards10South Staffs
3Jon Fish11Waldringfield
4Keith Byers18Morecambe
5Terry Curtis20Upper Thames
6Tony Rich22Oxford
7Neil Goodhead28South Staffs
8Doug Cooper28Overy Staithe
9Daz Prior29South Windermer
10Ben Steel40Etherow
11Tony Woods43Etherow