South African Hobie Tiger National Championships

Doodle Dodds and Andrew Ward do it Again!

Not satisfied with squeezing in a win at last week’s Hobie 14 Nationals over Hein De Jamer, Blaine “Doodle” Dodds (or is it “The Doddsicle” streaking past the rest of us?) served up a maestro’s performance with Andrew Ward this past weekend in Langebaan and won (once again!) the 2019 Hobie Tiger Nationals. Well done Blaine and Andrew! Whoever said that fiddling on the beach doesn’t pay hasn’t watched Blaine fiddle and diddle on the beach while waiting for wind! He even fiddles with a 14!

On the first day the wind gods were too angry for racing. So no racing but lots of fiddling – however it did not stop a highly spirited welcome gathering at Kokomo restaurant that evening. Well done to the Kokomo team of Dave Warmedam and wife Karin for drinks, nibbles and dinner later. Unconfirmed rumours have it that a certain amount of dancing was done in the wee hours! Most of us were in that bed at that time so can’t give further details!

Second day we had good breeze, up to 25 knots and more by the time we finished our four races for the day’s sailing. It was hard work out there with lots of sore and broken bodies at the end. At the end of the day – Dodd and Ward in the lead with 6 points closely followed by Shaun and Lee (10) and Duncan and Hein (11). Doug Edwards and Nic Baigrie managed four fourth places! That evening a delicious meal at Friday Island (thanks Mark and Johnny VdV) fed some hungry sailors. The mood a bit quieter – most too tired for any dancing?!

The third day was light wind, some unpredictable wind shifts, course shortening and even some protests, unusual in the Hobie fleet? The pie-weights struggled! After now 8 races, Blaine still in the lead, (10), followed by Duncan (living up to his “Silver Fox” reputation on 17) and Shaun (20).

The last day started with no wind, but perseverance paid off, our Race Officer managed to squeeze in two good races (won by Ferry/Hawkins and Lagesse/Albert respectively), Blaine keeping a beady eye and covering his competitors.

So Blaine and Andrew finally took the series with 14 points, followed by Shaun and Lee on 21 and Duncan and Hein on 24. Well done guys, not bad for a bunch of fifty-odd year olds (some soon to be 60 I believe….?), keeping the youngsters behind you!

Johnny van der Vyver started poking around the sand dunes, and going over the notorious “hump” on the way to the beach, manged to poke…his spinnaker pole straight through the back window of his Land Rover. Good one Johnny, you have now joined this very exclusive club of which I am already a member!

There was also a “Happy Threesome” on the water, you know the old saying, Hobie Sailors Do It On The Water….I believe Mark Kopel, Garth Loudon and Duncan decided to have a threesome near the top mark, some banging of boats, wild exclamations, a protest or two, and all resolved happily we hope !

A big thanks from all competitors to the main Organiser (Duncan Ross) and his family, Duncan, you did such a good job…..we hope you do it again next year!

A HUGE THANK YOU to ALL the volunteers and Helpers. Race Officer Doug Allison (and his able assistant Judy!), Brad and Saskia Stemmet for the Committee boat, Rob Selig, Rob Fine and Wille and Franz for their rubber ducks and speedboat respectively, Guido, Nick Albert, Tony Marsh, Nick Stevens, Sam, David, Johnny Hawkins on mark laying and rescue duties. The Hobie Cape shop (Jaco, Shannon and Megan) and off course the Langebaan Yacht Club. Thanks to those competitors who travelled from far away to take part!

And last but not least ….. A HUGE THANK YOU to our SPONOSRS and SUPPORTERS.

Report by Charles Rickens


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