The Allen Endurance Series (AES) will be returning for its 4th season, this time with the inclusion of an additional event, bigger prize fund and new website.
Launched in 2018 the series combines the UK’s premier long-distance events to give high-performance Catamaran and Skiff sailors a season-long series to compete for. Currently included are the Whitstable Forts, Solent Forts, East Coast Piers and Round Sheppey races. And for 2021 Allen has announced the inclusion of the Anglesey Offshore Dinghy Race. The series will now include two discards.
This year competitors will be able to track their overall AES position on the new Allen Endurance Series website. The new website allows competitors to easily find information for each of the events all in one place, including event documentation and registration links.
Allen will be providing an enticing £1000 worth of vouchers and merchandise throughout the five AES events, as well as, the overall series prizes of £500, £250 & £100 vouchers for 1st, 2nd and 3rd respectively.
The 2021 Finn World Masters is scheduled to take place in Medemblik over the 21-28th May with support from Allen, the UK based sailing hardware manufacturer.
Allen has had a long-lasting relationship with the class. In the past, the company has worked closely with some of the leading class manufacturers to design and produce many of the custom hull fittings, booms, tillers and other specific components you will find on the Finn dinghy.
Liz Adams, Managing Director of Allen, commented “The Finn really complements our range of hardware and to see Allen products on boats that will come from across the globe to take part is excellent. It’s great to be able to support such a healthy class and one that is full of the sport’s most well-known sailors.”
The British company has made a Finn fittings guide available on its website, all of the products in the list are manufactured at the Allen Factory in Essex. The company ensures all products are vigorously tested by its elite team of sponsored sailors and develops race leading equipment from their feedback.
Hadron H2 National Championship sponsored by Allen
The fourth Hadron H2 National Championships got underway at Royal Torbay YC on Friday (September 11th). The day dawned with little sun and little wind but after a short postponement the shifty WSW wind steadied somewhat and increased to over 5 knots and the first start was underway.
The fleet may be smaller than usual (you know why!) but the quality of the entries is very high, with any one of them capable of winning the event. Spectators’ attention, however, was on the potential tussle between Richard Leftley, current Inland Champion, and Ian Sanderson, National Champion for the last two years. Richard led Ian at the weather mark but the lighter helm clawed back the lead on the off wind legs. However, he was not alone – Ian Dawson (Warsash SC) and Robin Parsons (Deben YC) also passed Richard off wind. Ian Sanderson took the winning gun by about 15 seconds from Richard, who had improved his off wind speed in the latter half of the race. The rest of the fleet were not far behind, however, with new H2 owner Robin Parsons sailing his first Championship race in third place. Dave Barker (Draycote Water SC) came fourth.
The 2020 Hadron H2 National Championships are taking place next week, September 11th to 13th. Hosted by RYA Club of the Year, Royal Torbay YC, this promises to be THE event for H2s in 2020.
Due to COVID-19 issues no doubt, entries are down on the previous years but the quality of the entries suggests that this will be a very competitive event. Foremost among the contenders for the Harold Smith Championship Trophy will be Ian Sanderson (Keyhaven YC) who has won the previous two champs and came second in 2016 in his dark grey H2 ‘Shifty Fades Away’.
Vying to topple Ian from his pedestal will be a group of keen and very experienced helms. Richard Leftley, the H2 Class Association chairman and current Inland Champion, has been relentlessly putting in practice at his club (South Cerney SC) but he admits that while he is super-fit and going well inland, he lacks practice on the sea. Nonetheless, he must be regarded as the number one contender for Ian’s crown.
Close behind Richard (and with more sea sailing experience!) is Simon Hipkin. Simon, too, has been putting in a lot of practice – in waves – and in the heavier stuff he has been sailing on a par with the Phantoms at his home club so he could definitely swing it.
22 sailors took part in the first official Blaze event of the year, The East Coast Championships, on Sunday 23rd August at the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club on the River Crouch.
Storm Ellen was blowing her socks off in the leading days to the event and so it was with much excitement that the 22 Blaze sailors launched from the RCYC pontoon when PRO Phil Aspinall announced racing would go ahead during the 10am socially distanced briefing in the dinghy park.
All sailors made their way down the River Crouch on a slack tide to the sailing area just passed the mouth of the River Roach. The westerly wind was gusting just over 20knts at points and the tide was scheduled to start flooding just before the first race, the locals recognised this meant some large choppy waves would be the highlight of the day.
Although it was the first event of the year the competitors did not hold back with the first start being general recalled. The race committee promptly started the next race under a black flag with 5 sailors then being OCS and the tone for the day being set with the rest of the starts under the U flag.
Allen Endurance Series 2020 launched at the RYA Dinghy Show 2020
Announced at the RYA Dinghy Show were the dates for the third season of the Allen Endurance Series, which now includes an additional event and prize fund for 2020.
Over £1000 worth of vouchers and other merch will be available throughout the 5 events, as well as, the overall series prizes of £500, £250 & £100 vouchers for 1st, 2nd and 3rd respectively. Competitors will also be in with the chance of winning a complete Catamaran mainsheet system worth £600, drawn at random, just by entering an AES Event. For each entry into an AES race, the competitor will receive an entry to the random draw.
After the launch, there was also a brief prize-giving for the 2019 overall winners, of which Simon Northrop and Caleb Cooper took first place and the £500 voucher. Simon commented “I would just like to thank Allen as the title sponsor of the Endurance Series. As Catamaran sailors this is the support we need and it’s very much appreciated. So, thanks to Allen and may 2020 be as good as 2019.”
A long-distance race which has evolved over its 24-year history into a well-balanced test of sailing and racing skills, attracting top national helms as well as experienced club racers and international entries. For 2020 the Saturday afternoon will feature a shake down race to the Forts and back – a single leg for boats with 1000 PY and below. For those boats of 1000+, there’ll be an inshore race. On the Sunday, laid out in hub and spoke format with each leg returning through a gate near the club, will be the Endurance Race. The full course covers 85 kilometers in estuary, coastal and open sea conditions, and provides racing at all points of sailing. The flexibility of this format differentiates the Forts Race from other marathon events.
The Solent Forts Race is a long-distance event for sports Catamarans and is set in the Eastern Solent, with Hayling Island and Portsmouth to the north and the Isle of Wight to the west. The race comprises several legs radiating out from a gate (like a star), allowing the course configuration and length to be adjusted according to the conditions prevailing on the day. The race gets its name from the Napoleonic Channel Forts that comprise two of the marks of the course. The race has a unique ‘time out’ feature that allows boats to take an optional 30-minute break during the race. This time may be used for a comfort break or for tactical purposes. Saturday also features a shake down race.
Open to fast dinghies and Catamarans, the East Coast Piers Race is a major charity event raising funds to support “The Cirdan Trust” to further support their important work with socially or physically disadvantaged children. The race is based at Marconi Sailing Club on the River Blackwater in Essex and goes all the way up the East Coast to Walton and back again. There are three course options available, the Bradwell Race – 13 miles long open to fast dinghies. The Colne Point Race – 27 miles long open to fast dinghies and Catamarans. And the Endurance Race, the full ECPR which is 48 miles long open to Catamarans only. Saturday Features a round the cans shake down race with an excellent party in the evening.
The Anglesey Offshore Dinghy & Catamaran Race is The North West’s premier offshore dinghy race, covering over 15 nautical miles around the South East coast of Anglesey. Frequent visitors include Olympic sailors, and past and present National Champions. The race starts on the Royal Anglesey start line at Beaumaris in the picturesque Menai Straits. Then through Puffin Sound and passing the rugged cliffs of Anglesey. After crossing the glorious sandy beaches of Red Wharf Bay, the fleet head for the famous Lifeboat station at Moelfre. The finish is at Red Wharf Bay Sailing Club at Traeth Bychan. Rated by Yachts and Yachting as one of the top events to compete in. For 2020 the event will also include a shake down race from the Royal Anglesey Yacht Club on the Saturday night followed by a social evening before the Endurance Race on Sunday.
IOS Round the Island Race is a long established, long distance event designed to test sailing skills and endurance over a 40-mile course. Sailed clockwise around the island of Sheppey, starting and finishing at IOS Sailing Club. The race includes tidal sea, river & estuary sailing. The event is the longest dinghy and board race in Europe —The race is open to all classes of dinghy, catamaran and sailboard and there is a shake down race on the Saturday.
Allen named as official hardware supplier to the Swedish Sailing Team
UK manufacturer of performance sailing hardware, Allen, has been chosen as the official hardware supplier to the SWE Sailing Team, the team incorporates the best talent in Sweden for both Olympic and youth classes.
The Swedish sailing team boasts an impressive 35 Olympic sailing medals and for Tokyo 2020 the targets for the sailors are set higher than ever. With four teams selected to represent the Swedish Sailing Team in the Finn Dinghy, 470 men, ILCA Standard and ILCA Radial classes in Tokyo it comes as no surprise that the team opted to choose Allen as its hardware of choice before the games.
Thomas Hansson-Mild of the Swedish Sailing Team, stated, “We will benefit a lot from this collaboration. Allen have a 60 year heritage of making good products. With your knowledge and your technical experience, and the quality of the products… well, we are super happy!”
Managing Director of Allen, Liz Adams, commented proudly, “It’s very important for Allen, as a UK manufacturer, to build strong bonds with sailors around the world. It will help in our R&D programme. The Swedish Sailing Team will contribute to our product development, which will be a fantastic opportunity for all of us. We wish you every success and hope we have many happy years working together.”
Allen is based in Essex, UK and the team of highly skilled engineers and designers work closely with some of the World’s elite sailors to ensure the sailboat hardware they manufacture performs to the highest level. Allen can rapidly prototype products and produce custom parts for elite sailors with its impressive range of in-house resources including toolmaking, CNC machining, Injection moulding and assembly to name just a few.
Take a closer look at the Rockatross in this walk-around video with Team Allen sailor Stuart Bithell, boat owner Charlotte Fildes and SailJuice‘s Andy Rice.
We are also pleased to announce the winner of our “Guess the number of fittings” competition we ran over the weekend of the RYA Dinghy Show in which you could win £300 worth of hardware just by guessing the number of fittings on the Rockatross Merlin Rocket we had on display.
The winner is Jude Perrot, with the closest guess of 411 Allen fittings.
The correct number was in fact 420!
Thank you to all who entered and congratulations to Jude, who will now be able to pimp her Byte or Wayfarer with plenty of Allen kit!
Win a £300 Allen voucher at the 2020 Dinghy Show
We will once again be exhibiting at the RYA Dinghy Show29th Feb – 1st March, Alexandra Palace, London. Situated on stand B34 in The Great Hall, we will be hosting a bunch of exciting launches, competitions and showcasing a range of new and existing products.
On the Allen stand will be the fully Allen fitted and very exciting looking “Rockatross” Merlin Rocket built by Hipkin Boats. Running in conjunction with the launch of the Rockatross will be a competition where sailors can guess the number of Allen fittings being used onboard the boat. The sailor who gets the closest guess will win £300 worth of Allen retail vouchers and some Albatross merchandise. Make sure to come by the Allen stand over the weekend to find out more.
Other events taking place at B34 include the launch of the Allen Endurance Series 2020, Team Allen meet and greets and the 2019 prize giving for the AES winners.
Some of the Team Allen members floating around the stand include;
Dylan Fletcher – 49er British Olympic representative, 49er World Champion, GBR Sail GP Helm, UK Moth National Champion.
Stuart Bithell – 49er British Olympic representative, 49er World Champion, GBR Sail GP flight controller, 2012 Silver Medallist 470.
Charlotte Dobson – 49erFX British Olympic representative.
Saskia Tidey – 49erFX British Olympic representative.
Megan Pascoe – 2.4mR 2019 World Champion.
Chris Taylor – Youth Americas Cup winner. 49er BST.
Billy Vennis-Ozanne – 29er National Champion, RS 800 National Champion, 49er BST.
Allen Endurance Series Wrap Up
The second edition of the Allen Endurance Series (AES) wrapped up at the IOS Round Sheppey Race on the weekend of the 31st/1st September. The series which included a total of 150 different entries over the 4 events was again dominated by F18 sailors, with the high-performance catamaran claiming all 3 of the top overall podium spots for the second year running.
This year the AES showcased a wide range of conditions with each of the four long distance events experiencing varying wind speeds and sea states, ensuring each entrant got a good test of their sailing skills. Despite this, Simon Northrop of Minnis Bay managed to win two of the four events and after including one discard also takes the overall series win by just 4 points. Therefore, claiming a total of £700 worth of Allen vouchers.
Simon commented “We are pleased to have won the AES this year after finishing runners up in the first year. The series tests every skill from endurance to navigation and everything in between. We had some fantastic racing with the other competitors and we were hoping to take the Sheppey race to add to the other two wins in the series, but, we decided to sail over from Whitstable instead of trailing the boat and this was a bad call as we arrived late due to a light head wind and started 22 minutes late! We still managed a 6th overall, just 15 minutes behind the first boat, and we had a great blast chasing everyone down. The Sheppey race was the highlight of the series for me, despite this, as I last did this race in a Condor 30 years ago and it was great to come back again!
Thanks to Allen, Sail Racer and everyone else involved in the series, it’s really great to have an overall title to race for all season and I look forward to competing again in 2020.”
2nd AES overall place goes to Tim Neal, who claims a £200 Voucher and 3rd place along with a £100 voucher, goes to Nick Barnes.
The Allen Endurance Series will carry on into its 3rd season for 2020 and will consist of the following events