Peter Gray wins Seldén SailJuice Winter Series

Selden Sailjuice Winter Series

The Staunton Harold Sailing Club sailor Peter Gray has won the overall title at this season’s Seldén SailJuice Winter Series, sailing an Osprey with Geoff Edwards.

It’s been 11 years since Gray won the overall title in a Scorpion. Gray and Edwards won only by the skin of their teeth. It was a close-run thing against Ben Flower (Paignton Sailing Club), who raced his Laser/ ILCA 7 to a healthy lead in the early stages of the nine-event series but couldn’t defend his lead in the later events due to Olympic campaigning duties for Canada.

Gray and Edwards needed a top six at the final event, last weekend’s Oxford Blue, if they were to beat Flower overall. A fifth against a fleet of 85 at Farmoor Reservoir was just good enough to take out the overall victory, for which the Osprey team will receive the trophy this weekend at the RYA Dinghy & Watersports Show at Farnborough. It was the closest-ever finish in the 14-year history of the series.

Selden Sailjuice Winter Series 4b

Joe Scurrah (Carsington Sailing Club) sailed his RS Aero 7 to third overall after a very consistent season, just beating Ollie Groves and Martin Penty (Beaver Sailing Club) in their RS400 by less than a point.

Gray was surprised to learn that it was 11 years since he’d last won the overall series, on that occasion sailing a Scorpion with Rachael Rhodes, now his wife, Rachael Gray. “It’s amazing to think it’s so long ago,” laughs Gary. “It’s good to win it again, this time with Geoff. We’d sailed together in a few other classes, and we wanted to identify the right boat for us both.

“We thought about the 505 or the Fireball, but we gave the Osprey a go last year at the Nationals when the class association was kind enough to lend the class boat to us. We didn’t get much racing in that week, though, because there wasn’t much wind, so they were kind enough to let us borrow the boat for the Seldén SailJuice Winter Series. Now we’ve bought an older Osprey for ourselves, and Rachael and I both have new Scorpions coming too.”

Like previous winners, Gray says the Seldén SailJuice Winter Series is the ideal way to keep your racing skills sharp through the colder months. “It’s good, tight racing that keeps you on your toes, and it stops you going rusty,” he says. “The way the events and the series are run, it’s very slick, and the format is quite nice. There’s a bit of a cluster of events around Christmas, but you can put a series together by doing one event a month across the winter season, and that’s pretty much what Geoff and I did.”

Gray says it was a nice feeling returning to Staunton Harold to drop off the boat. “I got a big cheer from everyone when I arrived, which felt great. It’s been a good winter.”

Selden Sailjuice Winter Series

The Osprey was the only trapeze boat to make the top ten overall this season, which being predominantly light airs has tended to favour the slower, hiking classes. Roger Blake and Jonathan Osgood (Great Moor SC) sailed their Osprey to 9th overall, but Blake was beaten by his son Jamie who hiked his Laser to 5th overall.

Prizegiving for the Seldén SailJuice Winter Series is held on Saturday, 25 February 2023, at 10.15am on the main stage of the RYA Dinghy & Watersports Show at Farnborough.

Spotlight Job

Technical key account manager

Welwyn Garden City (hybrid)

Specialty chemicals company Sika is looking for a technical key account manager to drive business growth and foster strong relationships with key accounts within the marine sector.

Full job description »

Comments are closed.

This article was written and/or edited by the UK-based MIN team.

Skip to content