Thirteen Flying Fifteens came together on October 7 and 8 for the Belgian Championship 2023.
In addition to the six crews from the organizing club, three crews came from RYCM Liège and one from RCNV Visé. This was the first time that every Belgian Flying Fifteen club were represented.
France was also well represented, with crews from the Paris region: one from the YCIF and two from the YCPFO.
We were very pleased to see more visitors after a difficult post-covid period.
Regarding the weather, the continuing summer allowed participants to sail in temperatures of over 20 degrees under a generous sun.
The race committee decided to send out as many races as possible on Saturday, in order to secure the Championship following the lack of wind forecast for Sunday.
So five races were launched in winds varying between 10 and 15 knots.
The wind direction made it possible to take advantage of the lake's long axis and run races of around 40 minutes back to back.
Four crews quickly showed their podium ambitions, with BEL3915 (Ezékiel Desantoine and Aurélie Chantrenne) and BEL3596 (Michel Vincent and Kévin Vincent) breaking away from the rest of the fleet early on to open up an often substantial gap, and FRA3438 (Lionel Kerdrain and Clovis Kerdrain) and BEL2805 (Didier Trine and Bernard Vandersteen) alternating between 3rd and 4th places.
At the end of the first day, BEL3915, the title holder, leads with a comfortable lead after five victories, but the rest of the standings are more difficult to predict.
After returning to shore, participants discussed the day's racing over Belgian beers and an excellent meal organized by SNEH.
Wind conditions were forecast to be very light on Sunday and indeed, by morning, not many people thought it would be possible to race.
However, the RO sent everyone out onto the water and after a slight delay managed to launch four races on a reduced course.
In these lighter conditions, BEL3742 (Alain Kinard and Geneviève Gennart) performed well and disrupted the ranking of the podium contenders.
In the end, BEL3915 retained its title, adding four victories to those of the previous day. The battle for second place was tighter, with BEL3596 followed by FRA3438 equal on points.
The prize-giving ceremony saw the crews rewarded with numerous local beers, and two special prizes were also awarded.
The Equinox Trophy this year went to the most represented visiting club (RYCM). A prize was also awarded to the youngest team member (7 years old), who received a complete set of sportswear.
We look forward to seeing you at the 2024 Championship on October 5 and 6, 2024 at Lac de la Plate Taille.