Final rounds hit by big surf!
The final round of the Zapcat National Championship lived up to expectations in the punishing surf of Watergate Bay, Newquay, Cornwall.
In the Division 2 final the victor’s spoils went to 42 Go Commando II, the Royal Marines rookie pairing of Orlando Rogers and Aldeiy Alderson. Paul Ledger and Ed Nichols in 22 Clear Air Turbulence rounded off a successful weekend with a second place finish to add to their third place yesterday, and the father-son pairing of Jim and CJ Crooks in 39 Cat in the Hat finishing third.
The Division 1 final was perhaps the most eagerly awaited race of the day. After the first re-start 08 Pegasus Vortex Racing took the lead, but when 98 Team Suffolk lost their co-pilot overboard forcing a second restart, it was Richie Lake and Steve Pidsley in 37 Go Commando! who capitalised on the opportunity to pull way ahead of the chasing pack while Mick and Baz were left trailing in fifth place. Unfortunately for the original Royal Marines team 18 Anger Management’s flip meant a further restart which saw them slip back down the order again. With championship standings at stake the race went right down to the wire and Richie and Steve were just a nose-length behind Daren Ford and Nick Selfe in 38 Team Speedy Hire as they crossed the line in fourth position.
Just feet ahead of them in second position were Craig Davis and Rob Martin in 69 Energy 69 Vortex Racing who finished just a couple of boat lengths behind 2007 Zapcat National Champions Baz and Mick.
Simon Taylor and Lucy Richardson made their debut this year and won both Rookie of the Year and Mixed Team titles in Spiky Fish.
With large waves smashing into the shore, for the soaked crowds who had gathered to watch, the day had no lack of drama as the crashing surf tested the skills of the Zapcat pilots and their co-pilots, all battling to keep a steady line and speed around the course.
Since its entry into the UK sports market in 2001, Zapcat Racing has seen its fleet grow year on year to become what is claimed to be the world’s largest one-design powerboat series. The catamarans reach speeds of up to 50mph. With 340bhp per tonne, a race-ready Zapcat can pull more than 2G in the tightest corners.
The awards were presented at a glitzy end of season dinner at the Watergate Bay Hotel, overlooking the beach.