Allen Sponsored UK Cherub Nationals

Cherub start line

Between the 6th and 9th of July the UK Cherub class travelled to WPNSA for its 70th anniversary nationals supported by Rooster, suppliers of high performance technical clothing for sailing, and Allen, suppliers of performance sailing hardware.

12 boats made the trip ready for some close racing and find out which team would be fastest in 2021.

Day 1 – Tuesday 6th July

Blowing dogs off chains.

The scheduled first day was a bit of a blow out, the forecast was for a lot of wind and the reality was white horses within the marina and gusts of up to 35kts. Not many wanted to go out racing. After checking the boats were properly tied down in the dinghy park, the sailors left WPNSA for some sightseeing.

Day 2 – Wednesday 7th July

Dogs still on chains but getting blown about a bit.

There was still plenty of wind left for day 2 and with an extra race scheduled to catch-up we all headed out for a long hard day of racing. Race 1 got away cleanly with Paul Croote and Andrew Whapshott in Marmite leading the way around the course, followed by Dean Ralph and Simon Jones in Eleanor. After two windy laps Marmite was well in the lead and went for a third lap, but Eleanor correctly went for the finish giving them the first race win. Special mention must be made to siblings Oliver and Emily Goolden for finishing their first race together in Nautilus Pompilius and Emily’s first race in a Cherub in very challenging conditions.

Race 2 was lead by Marmite followed by Phil and Carol Alderson in Zero Gravitas then Andy and Jill Peters in Usagi Yojimbo. Dave Ching and James Hughes in Anatidaephobia had a good race finishing in 5th just after Eleanor. Dave puts this good result down to his Rooster race bib keeping his wayward buoyancy aid constrained and avoiding tangles and snags in this windy race.

The first three places in Race 3 were unchanged with the heavy weather speed of Marmite dominating. James Ruddiman and Chris Haslam in EJ had their best result of the event with a 4th followed by Ade and Sven White in the 97 rules+ Pocket Rocket finishing a good 5th.

Race 4 was dominated again by Marmite but this time Usagi Yojimbo got ahead of Zero Gravitas. King Tubby the 97 rules boat of Martyn Denchfield and Ellie Craig showed determination to keep going for a best result of fourth place.

Day 3 – Thursday 8th July

Dogs relaxing in a building breeze.

Lighter winds greeted the fully restored fleet for race 5 with most boats only managing to single wire. Usagi Yojimbo was enjoying the conditions and pulled away to get their first race win, closely followed by Marmite, then Zero Gravitas.

The wind had built slightly more for Race 6 which was again won by Usagi Yojimbo with Marmite close on their heels. Dan’s Boat was showing good pace in the conditions and were able to get a solid third ahead of Zero Gravitas. The two 97 rules boats King Tubby and Nautilus Pompilius were having a good race at the back with Nautilus Pompilius screaming downwind to edge ahead of King Tubby.

Jamie Pearson and Digby Still on Poppy stunned the fleet with a perfectly executed port hand flier at the start of race 7 and had clear air out to the right side of the course. Everyone else had decided the left side of the course was the way to go and by the top mark this was also obvious to Poppy. Having had a reasonable first lap in the increasing wind Zero Gravitas capsized when Phil dropped the mainsheet letting Dan’s Boat and Poppy through. Although they were able to reel Poppy in quickly and just managed to sneak past Dan’s boat at the finish for a fourth place. However the race win went to Jonny O’Connor and Alex Harris in A&E who foiled their way to their first win of the series followed by Usagi.


The steadily increasing wind suited the foiling A&E giving them a second race win in race 8, followed by Marmite and Zero Gravitas. Usagi had a good first lap but on the second went too far left and lost out finishing in fourth on the last race of the day.

Day 4 – Friday 9th July

Dogs fast asleep with their fur barely ruffled by the wind.

Very light winds for the start of the final days racing, after a short postponement race 9 got going in marginal single wiring conditions. Having broken his previous helm Ade White found a light wind helm in Chris Halsam for Pocket Rocket getting them a good fifth place result. Usagi showed that they are light wind masters with another win. Also going well in the light wind was Dan’s Boat who scored second.

Another light wind race again suited Usagi and Dan’s boat, Marmite held onto third with Eleanor getting fourth place. There was a very tight finish between Poppy, Pocket Rocket and Zero Gravitas all finishing within seconds, kites up, twin wire reaching to get through the finish line. OK Technically Pocket Rocket was only single wiring but as a 97 Rules+ boat they only had one wire and were using it as much as they could. However, it is hard to write that bit concisely without breaking the flow of the story.

The wind was starting to build into twin wiring conditions for the final race where the championship could be decided depending on the order of Usagi and Marmite. In Dan’s Boat Luke Hartley and Oliver Morrell found their best pace to get there first race win, followed closely by Usagi then Marmite giving Usagi the championship.

Many thanks to Rooster and Allen for sponsoring the event, and to all at WPNSA for running an efficient and fun event despite the challenges of Covid restrictions. And Congratulations to Andy and Jill for a very closely fought nationals win.

Overall Results:

Pos Sail No Helm Crew Club R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 R9 R10 R11 Pts
1 3202 Andrew Peters Jill Peters Queen Mary SC ‑3 3 3 2 1 1 3 ‑4 1 1 2 17
2 3212 Paul Croote Andrew Whapshott Hawley Lake SC ‑9 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 ‑4 3 3 17
3 3218 Phil Alderson Carol Alderson Largs SC 2 2 2 3 3 ‑4 4 3 3 ‑7 4 26
4 2700 Luke Hartley Oliver Morrell Stokes Bay SC 5 7 (DNS) (DNC) 4 3 5 5 2 2 1 34
5 3208 Dean Ralph Simon Jones Isle of Sheppey SC 1 4 (DNS) (DNC) 6 6 8 6 7 4 7 49
6 2683 Ade White & Chris Haslam Sven White Mountbatten 7 9 5 (RET) 9 8 ‑10 10 5 6 5 64
7 3215 Jonny O’Connor Alex Harris Dee SC 4 (NSC) (RET) DNC 10 7 1 1 9 8 RET 66
8 3209 Dave Ching James Hughes Poole YC 8 5 (DNS) (DNC) 8 5 9 9 8 9 6 67
9 3216 Jamie Pearson Digby Still   (RET) 6 (RET) DNC 7 10 7 8 6 5 8 70
10 3206 James Ruddiman Chris Haslam Stokes Bay SC 6 8 4 (RET) 5 9 6 7 (DNC) DNC DNC 71
11 2650 Martyn Denchfield Ellie Graig   10 (RET) 6 4 11 12 12 (RET) 11 11 10 87
12 2680 Oliver Goolden Emily Goolden   11 10 (DNS) (DNC) 12 11 11 11 10 10 9 95


  • Simpson Trophy – Andy and Jill Peters in Usagi Yojimbo
  • Rosebowl – Paul Croote and Andrew Whapshott in Marmite
  • LOSSC Plaque – Phil and Carol Alderson in Zero Gravitas
  • Ladies Teapot (First Lady) – Jill Peters
  • Harwich Trophy (First 97 Rules) – Martyn Denchfield and Ellie Craig in King Tubby
  • Prix de Elegance (Best Looking Boat) – Zero Gravitas