FOOTY Euro GP 2009

:zbeer:There’ll be lots of pictures soon.

Wind today was pretty consistently around 18 mph measured at eye level - more in the gusts. The sky was overcast but the temperature was reasonable and the rain held off. Forecast for tomorrow is 10-12 mph with the possibility of showers.

So far we have 16 races sailed. Graham Elliott in Moonshadow is winning by a country mile - 14 firsts + 2 technical retirements. Often she is beating Bill Hagerups latest Cobra (a lovely boat) by almost a leg.

It has to be said that a great deal of this has to do with the driver, not the boat. Nonetheless, as Moonshadow’s designer I must admit to feeling extremely chuffed, especially in view of some recent noises that she was ‘overhyped’.

Third place is mostly being occupied by Trevor Thomas’ well-proven Mistrallete, but a very interesting new boats from Vernon Gee is increasingly showing form.

The seven-strong Polish contingent, all sailing the Polish Opałek design by Pawel Dejnak, has had a number of problems, most revolving around the fact that they had never believed anyone could race in such strong winds and consequently had no small rigs and very big primary rigs. However, they have impressed everyone by their good humour, sportsmanship, determination and modelling skills. Discussions are under way about holding an international event in Poland next year.

Sorry - this sounds like damnation by faint praise. It is pretty obvious that the Opałek is a very capable boat indeed. They are beautifully made from laser-cut parts and there is a decent probabiliity that they will become commercially available quite soon. Better rigs would transform them - and the pub table this evening was covered in Polish sketches.

Most important of all, the event is being a huge social success. Probably the most telling thing is that Inge-Lilla Dobrovich (wife of Animor, the Swedish representative) I think intended to take the train (or Ferry) across the River Mersey to look at the joys of Liverpool. Instead she has been having a whale of a time photographing thngs, talking to the many Birkenhead MYPBC members in attandance and so on. Racing has been keen but courteous and the general bonhommie ashore has been fantastic.

If nothing awful happens tomorrow, we have a fantastic success on our hands!


A. :graduate::zbeer::zbeer::zbeer::zbeer::zbeer:

So far we have 16 races sailed. Graham Elliott in Moonshadow is winning by a country mile - 14 firsts + 2 technical retirements. Often she is beating Bill Hagerups latest Cobra (a lovely boat) by almost a leg.

It has to be said that a great deal of this has to do with the driver, not the boat. Nonetheless, as Moonshadow’s designer I must admit to feeling extremely chuffed, especially in view of some recent noises that she was ‘overhyped’.

At last…Builder also chuffed.

Hi Angus

Thanks so much for giving some details from day 1. It will be interesting to see the final results and know how many skippers entered from various parts of the world. Hopefully, we can get some idea of what type of rigs end up finishing in the top 10.

Results being finalised now. Moonshadow first, Bill Hagerup second. I think Trevor Thomas third.

20 entries. 7 Polish, 1 USA, 1 Swedish, 1 Italian.

Almost entirely McCormack rigs.

More details + pics soon.

I know times are hard, but more Americans and Canadians would have been fantastic. You would have enjoyed it!

:zbeer::zbeer::zbeer::zbeer: (and that’s before my barby)


It looks like perhaps diagonal boats are becoming the norm. Has the choice of sail size been a major differentiator, or is everyone using roughly the same size sails? Have the 12" sails been used?





Wonderful time - I got home at 3.00am this morning so may be less lucid than normal:)

Photos (mine) should follow about midday today - UK time. Usual disclaimer will apply - they are what I could take with one hand while holding a strong last position, so are atmospheric rather than of reporting quality:D

One great bit of romantic news is that Presto met a pale Italian charmer and some of the pictures show their meeting. We then left them some decent privacy.


At last - uploads very slow today

My pictures of the event will be found in

It isn’t yet, but it will be a locked album with password


(all lower case letters)

Thanks will follow, as will all proper things - this is more top-of-the-head impression-dump

Great meeting - again a healthy mix of keen racing, well contested in a good spirit

Genuine pic of a start late on Sunday (My Presto was out of action with derangement of the whipstaff linkage, so I had 2 hands for the camera)

Bowsprits are a challenge on a short start line - here Flavio’s Presto Italiano has mated with Gary’s Mongoose and both are drifting to the downwind side of the lake; amorously entwined.

Saturday was blowing hard, but mercifully the rain just about stayed away. The water was fairly choppy, and many boats were on the 12 inch rigs and their sides (these photos are uploading)
Sunday started fine and calm, and the wind increased steadily during the day until by the end of the racing it was back around the lowest level for Saturday

A few more pics when they load


Our thanks to the Birkenhead club - again they ran a fast, fun, fair event; they were endlessly helpful, cheerful and enthusiastic, and we hope that they enjoyed it too

It was an international event, and so it proved

In my ignorance I do not know where are the countries whose sail markings are AZU and ATI

(This photo is the right way round)

Thanks too, to the Polish contingent, who really “made” the event :D.
When the fleet of Opałeks had been reduced by water and winds too strong for the rigs they showed their sailing talents by taking part brilliantly with borrowed boats. Great ambassadors for their country and community - we hope they enjoyed it too:D

Our other overseas guests were strong contributors, too. Bill Hagerup came back with his 427 Cobra and took (his usual) second place

Bill, in red Jacket talking to last year’s winner, Gary Sanderson

Sorry - I can only post a very limited length of reply (Windows 8)

Our friends from Sweden Animor and Inge-Lilla Dobrovich, and Flavio Faloci (also making his repeat visit and - suffering a repeat sail servo failure) also added to the event and, we hope enjoyed it and will return (with powerful teams) in the future

Animor (foreground in cap) and Flavio, watching his boat in red with blue cap

Saturday - strong winds and a good ripple on the water - can be illustrated by this pic - showing (Pawel) why Footys need a LONG rudder!

and this: showing a gaggle of boats, all with storm rigs, all with one ear in the water

99 is Moonshadow, sailed to a win by Graham Elliot, 427 is Bill Hagerup
and 230 is (I think) Vernon Gee (please correct me if I’m wrong)

This pic of Flavio’s Presto also illustrates the wind and waves of Saturday very well

The RSM bellowed: “tallestontheright/shortestontheleft/singlerank: SIZE”
so we did

in blue - native Scot sailing as an Italian and your scribe,

If you have tears prepare to shed them now (which I think is a quote from the Tax Form)

Once upon a time in the magical kingdom of Birkenhead there was a young Presto who came of age and went looking for one of her own kind.

One fine day day she dabbled her feet in the limpid water (in fact she dabbled EVERYTHING in the water before the waterproofing was sorted) and

All at once she espied another of her kind. Could it be she is not the only Presto in the world? They cautiously approached each other…

(you, too would approach with caution when you have such a long bowsprit:D)

Indeed it was another Presto! Excitingly different, with all the sophistication of an italian-cut Jib:). They circled each other warily

Then, recognising the sheer attraction of their attractive sheerlines they swum off together

We leave the story there as this is a family site - but we now know that Prestos need never be alone.
(Chorus of Ahhhhhhhhs)
The END (or is it)
That’s all, Folks!

‘It has to be said that a great deal of this has to be down to the driver, not the boat’ Angus said in an earlier post.

Complete load of rubbish Angus, the highlight of the weekend was when i gave the boat to Karoline from Poland ( 15ish year old ) on Sunday afternoon as her boat had broken and after a poorish start she sailed the boat to perfection around the course and won the race to the loudest cheer of the weekend.

The boat and rig was such a perfect match i am sure my Nan could of won the race and she passed away in 92

Graham Elliott

Thanks Andrew H. for a nice collection of photos on photobucket. How about adding some comments on who is who in the photos.

Maybe Trev could add sail numbers to the listing in post #26 showing the top 10 and 2 Juniors. Maybe next year.

To save Tevor the trouble!




Just for the record, OPAŁEK is pronounced (roughly) Oh Pah Wek




Point taken - I will do that as time permits
I was just trying to get a few pictures into the world to give everyone a flavour of the excellent time we had

The participants were mature and sophisticated

Most of them, most of the time:D This is Peter Hubbard and Gary Sanderson (with the transmitter)

Study in concentration

Graham in white, Bill Hanginout in red windcheater (Bill - why can’t you have a simple name like the Poles?) Young Piotr Szlachcic (red Tshirt)

And a photo incorporating the mainspring

Angus, (foreground) was able to be there on the Saturday to see that his intentions were being realised.

Most of the participants and visitors had been angussed at some stage - it is an unforgettable experience.:smiley:
Angus’s flagship Rödolm, was there but not suitable for the conditions so he was not dressed in the Jarl’s outfit

For the rig-spotters:

All rigs were Macrigs (or close approximation) with the execptions of:

The Prestos #5 and 22 - gaff Rigs with humungous jibs
The Dayglo gherkin 13 (aka) Mongoose - both Macrig and Swing rigs
All the Opaleks Sloop rigs

This race pic illustrates the rig types - Mongoose is wearing one of her smaller swing rigs

Late Sunday racing - the wind is getting stronger again


Welcome - already with the Polish! :slight_smile:

In this weekend, thanks to our new friends from United Kingdom, Italy, Sweden, the United States, we experienced an unforgettable adventure, that will long remain in our memory. Once again you and all, very thank for it -on behalf of the entire team!

For you and all the footy skipers, I’m sending the following link to more our photos (mostly taken by my wife) of this wonderful event -

And in reference to the discussions about new groups in the Footy Europe - in addition to the Czechs ( already know about a new group of German-Swiss -
It may indeed worthwhile to plan the next GP in Wroclaw / PL?

Paweł Dejnak
(To read it in English, I should write daynik - but the highlight is specifically designed for Angus, who knows the spelling of my second name :wink: )


Thank you for the links to the photos, and to yourself and your wife for taking them.

We hope you all enjoyed yourselves.
We can certainly say that the young people were a credit to themselves and to Poland, (and the adults as well:D)

I am SO pleased that one of the photos show that even if I finish last, I do sometimes make good starts! (Number 22 with the red sails)

I hope that you don’t mind me posting it here

best regards

Lovely photos, but names please, so that those of us who couldn’t be there can see who people are, names we are familiar with in the Footy Forum.

Birkenhead club member, Ernie Rice has put some photos on ‘YOU TUBE’
if you search for ‘footy championship birkenhead’ you will find them.
I am sure Angus has the computer know how to put names to the group photo.