Golden Fleece wins the 1911 Houghton Cup for West Mersea YC

Posted: Friday, 1st June 2018

Crouch YC & The Royal Burnham YC work together to honour the prestigious Houghton Cup

Michael Wheeler and his crew onboard his beautiful Sparkman & Stephens yacht called Golden Fleece won line honours, 1st in Class and 1st Overall on Sunday representing the WMYC in the Houghton Cup race

The prestigious and impressive trophy was first awarded by the Crouch YC in 1911 and the race this year was organised by the Royal Burnham YC working together with the Commodore of the Crouch Yacht Club, Dave Smith, who presented the trophy at the prize giving in the RBYC on Sunday evening.

The 37 mile course consisted of a 4 hour beat to windward followed by a spinnaker run back to the RBYC line. A rip in the genoa suffered at the start of the race fortunately held until the windward mark. By the time they reached Barrow No. 4 it was 24 inches long and fraying badly and the anxiety onboard was growing on each tack with the threat of it going right across the sail.

They flew their No. 2 spinnaker all the way home against an ebb tide with their navigator keeping them in the shallows but still afloat! Eventually they were overhauled for a while by Lyra of London (Swan 43) but managed to take the lead again at the entrance to the Crouch and were fortunate enough to hold it all the way home to the finish on the Club line of the Royal Burnham Yacht Club to take Line Honours

The crew consisted of WMYC members Michael Wheeler, Mike Berry, Philip Woods, Julian French, Nick Reay, Richard Sharpe, Rosemary Nunn and friends Simon Chidgey and Patrick Campbell.

Golden Fleece currently lies 3rd in the overall standings for the EAORA season.

The Royal Burnham YC hosted their Whitsun Regatta with three days of racing on the Crouch, with the settled conditions and sunshine most boats were out racing and with a good party vibe in the Royal Burnham Yacht Club it was defiantly the place to be. It was the first time that the Houghton Cup had been scheduled to be part of this regatta.

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