North Sails LOFT NEWS
Story Contributors: Robin Young
AITKEN’S ANIMAL RETAINS SCOTLAND’S RC35 CLASS CHAMPIONSHIP TITLE
Fully Equipped with North 3Di RAW
Kevin and Debbie Aitken’s First 36.7, Animal, has completed a three-peat as Scotia Handling Services Ltd RC35 Class Champions. The season-long championship was completed at the Clyde Cruising Club‘s GSS Regatta in partnership with CRhu Rigging on the 11th and 12th of September. It was all to play for between Animal, John Stamp’s Corby 33 Jacob, and Charlie Frize’s Corby 33 Banshee going into the final event of the series. After five close races in 5 to 18 knots, Animal continued a successful season with a regatta win followed by Jacob and Robin Young’s J109, Jings.
With a slightly reduced series, the RC35 fleet was happy to be back on the water after the 2020 Championship was canceled due to the pandemic. The fleet of Scottish and Irish yachts competed over five events spread from May to September on the West Coast of Scotland.
It all started at the relocated Clyde Cruising Club’s Scottish Series based at Largs instead of its usual home of Tarbert on Loch Fyne. A light wind regatta saw Animal get off to the best start possible with a straight-set of first-place finishes to not only win the RC35 Class but also pick up the 2021 Scottish Series Trophy. Jacob and Jings completed the podium with a 2nd and 3rd respectfully, making for a podium fully equipped with North Sails 3Di RAW.
The class then moved on to the Mudhook Regatta in June. Five races were completed across two days. Saturday saw westerly winds of 8 knots gusting to 17 knots. Sunday brought near-perfect conditions, blue skies, and warm sunshine. The south-westerly began slightly lighter but built to gusts of 20 knots for some brisk and exciting racing. The results couldn’t have been closer, with the top three boats finishing on 8 points each. The win went to Charlie Frize’s Corby 33, Banshee by way of a victory in the final race. Banshee was followed by Jings and Animal in 2nd and 3rd respectively.
Next up was the Scotia Tree Services RC35 Championship weekend in the middle of July, sailed in conditions more commonly found in the Mediterranean rather than Scotland. Sun, warmth, and wind were in plentiful supply for both days. The fantastic racing was supplemented by a great dock party on Saturday evening, kindly put on by Scotia Tree Services and Makars Gourmet Mash Bar. Jacob got their first event win of the season, followed up by Animal in 2nd and Banshee in 3rd.
Getting to the tail end of the season, the fleet moved back to Largs for the Largs Regatta Festival in the last weekend of August. Another light and tricky weekend saw Animal pip Banshee to victory with a win in the Sunday ‘Round the Island Race’. Jacob closed out the top rankings in third place.
The final standings after the five events, with one discard, were 1st Animal, 2nd Jacob, 3rd Banshee.
“Big thanks to everyone in the class for making the season possible and all the Clyde clubs for running the events during a difficult year. Clyde Cruising Club, Royal Northern & Clyde Yacht Club, Helensburgh Sailing Club, Largs Sailing Club, and Fairlie Yacht Club”, said outgoing Class Chairman and Class Champion Kevin Aitken.
“The RC35 Class will be back in 2022 with a full program of events in Scotland and Ireland. If you would like more information, please get in touch through the RC35 Class Facebook Page“, added new Class Chairman Robin Young.