TIM Wilkins and Heather Martin produced the goods to take bronze at the RS500 World Championships near Gothenburg.
The experienced pair, who live in Norfolk but who sail at Gurnard every summer, were the defending champions but had not trained thanks to the birth of their first son five months ago.
Tim said: "We just hoped to get through all 12 races so to get a bronze was a lovely surprise."
Tim and Heather were one of three Gurnard boats which travelled over for a week of tough racing.
Derek and Ellie Ness counted a third place but had to also count some penalties which knocked them down the list, while Fred and Archie Battison gained much from the experience of big fleet racing.
Meanwhile, after the club holiday for Cowes Week, the August MiniSeries of six races over three weekends kicked off in perfect weather last Sunday, with proceedings delayed until the Fastnet boats had sailed through Gurnard Bay to the west.
Solid starts for the series were made by Luke Margham, Mark Harrison, Keith Hayden and Carl Blenkinsop in the slow, medium, fast and cat classes, with two wins apiece.
East Wight Combined Clubs Dinghy Regatta
Under cloudless skies and steady Force 3 South-westerly, all three races were sailed under the direction of Brading Haven’s Richard Coleman, who set a challenging course for all fleets.
First off were the ten Scows, with Brading Haven enjoying a clean sweep, with Barry Dyer winning from Graham Sutton and Oliver Morgan.
In the nine-strong cadet fleet of Optimists, Sea View sailor Felix took the win from Barnaby, with F. Lett (Bembridge) in third.
The final race was the fleet of ten fast handicap boats, with RS200 sailor Sam Stitt taking line and podium honours, with Roger Herbert (Wayfarer) in second and Martyn Davies (Solo) third.
Scow Open Championships
This year’s championships were strongly contested by 18 boats.
Bembridge boats sailed by husband and wife, Oliver and Francesca Morgan, found a patch of clear water and took to the front leaving the remainder to encounter some very close sailing in race one. Oliver extended his lead by the time he took the finishing gun, with Francesca holding her own to hold off a late challenge by a fast-finishing Graham Sutton.
Race two saw a complete change around with the Morgans caught up in the pack, leaving Brading’s Barry Dyer to take the win from Bembridge’s Bruce Huber, with Richard Coleman, sailing a borrowed boat, in third.
The championships were won overall by Dyer, with Sutton second and Morgans sharing third. Francesca also took the ladies’ award with David Earee being awarded the first wooden boat prize.
In the third race of The Solent series, each class was dominated by a single boat from the start.
Max Bradley pulled away from Charlie Peplow to take first place in the Oppies with Tommy Whitehead third.
Helen Sceales’ Laser led the handicap class around the course but lost out to Joy Mowle’s Pico on corrected time with Sophie Whitehead, also in a Pico, third. Melinda Measor was again on top form in the Scows and the battle for second place was won by Graeme Bowen, who came well inshore on the final leg from Bouldnor. Niall Wallace was third.
Back on the river on Sunday, the earlier race in the Oppie-only series was won by William Palmer with Scarlett Lord second and Daniel Lee third.
For the afternoon race, three of the Oppie sailors defected to Teras to join the Picos and Lasers in the handicap class.
With Helen sailing a Pico, she came in first and retained her position on corrected time, with Daniel second and Paddy Lord third.
In the Scows, Graeme was the one to get away and couldn’t be caught. Although Melinda was over the line at the start, she and Nick Measor were soon vying for second place with Melinda succeeding and Nick taking third.
With the Redwings at Cowes — and well done to Matt Alexander in Harlequin who was the class winner for the second year running — racing was confined to just the One-Designs.
Although the winds were somewhat fickle and numbers were not great, those who did race certainly enjoyed themselves.
In particular, well done to Charles Nainby-Luxmoore who won the Bavarian Tankard for under-19 helms on Monday, with Natasha Ross second and Olly Joy third.
Racing over the weekend was for the Brinton Trophy. With nine boats out on Saturday and six on Sunday, the competition was keen and after the first race it looked as if D. Orange was going to win the trophy again. However, Sunday’s race did not go quite as well as she had hoped and it was Susie Beart who ended up the overall winner with a third and a second.