It will be the first event to celebrate the Centenary of the Hamble River Sailing Club, and it is apt, that this event goes first at a club with so much dinghy history.
Hugh Welbourn writing for the club’s Centenary Brochure remembers the event well:
“Just the thought of the Warming Pan brings back great memories of an age in dinghy racing when Hamble River was at the very centre of it all, back in the mid and late 60s. One year we had 5 or it 6 National Champions in different classes all sailing out of the club – and you couldn’t help but learn from some of the best in the country.”
The event used to be the first on the dinghy calendar for the year and everyone wanted to be there. Hugh continues: “But the Warming Pan was special – the start of the new season. There were new designs to see every year in the Merlin and 12’s, and last minute panics to try and get a winter build ready for the water were always a part of that, and then a couple of days great racing too. Starts were off the Club line and short tacking out of the river still trying to figure out a new boat, in close quarters, could be a bit of a wakeup call.”
This year the event will cater for Merlin Rocket, Firefly, Foxer and PY fleets. The Merlin Rockets have of course been there since the start. This will be the 57th running of the event and I’m sure some of the competitors have done all of the 56 preceding editions! The Firefly and Foxer fleets are also regulars, though the Foxers will race in the Warsash Pool opposite the club. No tacking out of the river for them. The innovation this year is the inclusion of PY fleets for the first time, though those with a trapeze will be disappointed as there are far too many things to get caught up on in the river.
IRO Roger Wilson will be in charge of things on the water this year, though I’m not sure an IRO course prepares anyone for the Warming Pan especially if it blows, as Hugh Welbourn recalls.
“Then the races with real breeze, carnage out around Hamble Point on more than a few occasions, wiped out in my first 12 ‘Warcry’ in one of those and then still won the race somehow or other. It certainly used to blow away the winter cobwebs!”
The rest of the team both afloat and ashore will be club regulars, and hot food and beverages will be available before, during and after racing.
Full details of the 2019 Warming Pan, including online entry, can be found here: http://www.hrsc.org.uk/event/306818
Further information: firstname.lastname@example.org