Fireflies glide to victory in a light winds classic 


Light winds greeted the sailors of the 5th leg of the GJW SailJuice Winter Series as the 44th Bloody Mary got underway at Queen Mary Sailing Club. This year attracted 287 entries, representing 61 classes from 105 clubs.


A steady force two decreased to a patchy force one testing the skills of 444 sailors today.

With one hour to go it was Topper 47641 of Sam Jones in the lead followed by the Firefly 2649 of Alex and Thomas Davey, with the Firefly taking the lead with 45 minutes to the finish cannons. Two Fireflies took advantage of the dying breeze to get a good lead over the chasing pack, with the Enterprises, Solos, Thames A-Raters and National 12s, carving their way through the fleet in pursuit.


But there was no chance of catching father and son team, Alex and Thomas, from Royal Harwich YC, in their Firefly 2649 as they glided to victory. Second place went to Firefly 3119, Barney Smith and Finian Morris from Papercourt, with the Solo 5491 of Michael Simms, Carsington SC, taking third. Ann Jackson and Alan Skeen from Burghfield were fourth in their Enterprise 23349, with Ann also scooping First Lady Helm and First Grand Master trophies.


A testing day, resulting in the first ever win for the Firefly class and probably the youngest winner in crew, Thomas age 9, with 2nd placed crew Finian Morris from Papercourt also flying the flag for young sailors. Well done to all who took to the water today. The Top 10 places were:

1st Firefly 2649 Alex and Thomas, from Royal Harwich YC

2nd Firefly 3119 Barney Smith and Finian Morris from Papercourt

3rd Solo 5491 Michael Simms from Carsington SC

4th Enterprise 23349 Ann Jackson and Alan Skeen from Burghfield

5th Solo 5670 Vince Horey from King George

6th Solo 5080 Fraser Hayden from Papercourt

7th Thames A-Rater 24 Jamie Stewart, Martin Hunter and James Date from Frensham Pond

8th Solo 5651 5651 Lawrence Creaser from HISC

9th Miracle 4040 Neil Gibson and Keith Macey from Redoubt SC

10th GP14 13251 Ian Dobson and Gemma Marshall from Burwain SC


First Lady Helm: Enterprise 23349 Ann Jackson from Burghfield

First Queen Mary Helm: Laser 182481 Toby Ayre

Grand Master: Enterprise 23349 Ann Jackson

First Junior Helm:  Topper 47641 Sam Jones from Hill Head

First Sailability: 2.4 Int 125 Nev Millard Queen Mary Sailability


12 Class prizes were also awarded to:


29er 111 Courtney Billborough and Hanna Brant, HISC

D-Zero 195 Rob Lennox from Barnt Green

Laser 210020 Alistair Goodwin from Haversham SC

Laser Radial 143568 Magnus Handley from Queen Mary SC

Merlin Rocket 3776 Nick Craig and Toby Lewis from Frensham Pond

National 12 3530 Graham Camm and Zoe Ballantyne from Burghfield

RS Aero 7 88 Daniel Wigmore from Grafham Water

RS Aero 9 2162 Peter Chaplin from Burghfield

RS200 1642 Maria Stanley and Rob Henderson from Itchenor

RS400 1203 Richard Gray and Jon Dyas from Queen Mary SC

Solo: Solo 5491 Michael Simms from Carsington SC

Topper 47641 Sam Jones from Hill Head


The overall winners thanked the race committee and all at the club for running the race so well in challenging conditions.


Provisional Results



Boat Tracking was used at the Bloody Mary and a full replay can be viewed following the link below.



Queen Mary would like to thank our sponsors Sportography, Speed SIX and Thyme Lords Catering whose assistance was greatly valued in running the event.

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