All posts by Tim Lawson

Mark wears the Henley colours mid-Atlantic

One of Henley Sailing Group’s members, Mark Henry, recently sailed the Atlantic in the 2011ARC on a 49’Jeanneau Kotari. Mark had quite an adventure with engine and gear failures throughout meaning they were one of the few boats to have sailed the full distance. It took them just under 20 days and they experienced various conditions from F8 to F0!

Mark proudly wore his Henley cap all the way across the Atlantic demonstrated by this photo at the half way point, with over 1000 miles to the nearest land in Venezuala.

2011 Cranfield Regatta results table

The Henley team had an excellent regatta coming in 8th place out of 36 boats, a significant improvement on last years 12th. A full write-up and photos is being prepared, in the meantime here is the full results table.

The racing results shown in the table below are calculated by totalling the placing achieved in each race with the lowest position being discarded. The discarded positions are shown in light blue.

position boat no team skipper race 1 race 2 race 3 race 4 race 5 total
1st 4040 INSEAD K Glover 2 4 2 1 3 8
2nd 4021 Cranfield 13 J Gair 6 2 3 4 1 10
3rd 4038 Bocconi Menza 33 1 12 2 6 21
4th 4036 LBS 1 K Rasmussen 3 11 1 6 15 21
5th 4022 Glasgow P Walters 16 3 7 3 11 24
6th 4006 Cranfield 2 P Methven 19 7 9 8 2 26
7th 4004 Manchester 1 R Drummond 12 5 10 7 9 31
8th 4009 Henley R Willets 5 10 8 9 12 32
9th 4020 Leeds K Rawson 18 8 6 13 8 35
10th 4002 Cranfield 1 A Wheal 4 15 13 15 5 37
11th 4028 Manchester 2 M Reid 15 17 5 14 7 41
12th 4037 MIP U Alvassi del Frate 26 6 18 5 14 43
13th 4031 Smurfit S Hayes 23 12 4 11 20 47
14th 4025 Exeter A Peters 13 9 17 10 22 49
15th 4039 RSM J Tinsobin 7 13 16 16 37 52
16th 4011 Cranfield 4 T Higham 1 21 30 22 16 60
17th 4010 Cranfield 16 E Ebney 8 16 19 21 17 60
18th 4016 Bath 1 S Horlock 9 30 15 12 24 60
19th 4032 Imperial 3 J Kemp 20 19 20 37 4 63
20th 4007 Cranfield 3 D Durston 11 26 24 24 10 69
21st 4012 Cranfield 10 R McQuillan 14 25 23 17 18 72
22nd 4033 Warwick C Best 17 14 34 19 29 79
23rd 4026 Cranfield 15 D Griffiths 10 20 29 28 37 87
24th 4035 Cranfield 12 P Lovejoy 24 23 25 20 37 92
25th 4013 Cranfield 8 J Friggins 21 27 27 18 27 93
26th 4034 LBS 2 B Grosman 31 29 14 37 23 97
27th 4008 Cranfield 7 D Price 25 18 28 27 37 98
28th 4018 Imperial 2 J Ingham 27 28 22 23 26 98
29th 4030 Imperial 1 P Mercer 32 36 33 26 13 104
30th 4019 Bath 2 R Knight 37 34 21 30 19 104
31st 4017 Cranfield 9 S Davies 34 24 11 37 37 106
32nd 4005 Cranfield 5 C Sharman 22 31 31 25 21 108
33rd 4014 Cranfield 14 H Edsell 28 22 26 37 37 113
34th 4015 Cranfield 6 J Porter 29 32 36 29 28 118
35th 4042 Cranfield 17 N Hoare 35 35 32 31 25 123
36th 4029 Cranfield 11 A Lane 30 33 35 32 37 130

Ready for the 2011 regatta

The Henley team is finalised and ready to race at the 2011 Cranfield MBA Regatta in three weeks time. We have only been able to get one crew together this year but the team are raring to go and looking forward to an excellent event.
This years team is:
  • Tim Lawson (ORGANISER)
  • Michiel Commandeur (FIRST MATE)
  • Qi Zhang
  • Alison Fellows
  • Tom Brack
  • Joanna Lloyd
  • Andrea Consonni
Lots of new faces this year so a great opportunity for fresh talent to make their mark on our performance. Photos of the event and an update will be posted here.

Team recruitment underway

We are still recruiting for the team to take part in the 2011 Cranfield MBA Regatta. If you are a current Henley MBA or Reading University student, alumni member or staff then you could be part of our crew.  

The regatta is an excellent event with great sailing and networking with other business school members and alumni. The Regatta is on the 22nd to 24th July, departing from Sunsail in Port Solent. An overnight stay is in Cowes and racing takes place on the Saturday and Sunday.
Contact us now for more details via email at

Now looking for team members for the 2011 Cranfield Regatta

We are looking to put together two crews to compete under the Henley Business School banner in the 2011 Cranfield Regatta. This will be on the 22nd to 24th July 2011 and will depart from Sunsail in Port Solent, Portsmouth. There will be a stop over in Cowes on the Saturday night. The boats used will be a fleet of brand new Beneteau First 40 yachts.

The Henley teams will usually have at least one practice weekend ahead of the regatta – details to be advised later. If you are interested in taking part, please reply to the author.

Poetry in motion…

Mark Henry, one of our team members, is a budding poet in his spare time. Here is Mark’s tale of the regatta weekend:

Twas our weekend for racing as the HBS Crew; all of us keen to see how well we’d do
Our skipper said the start line will be over there, so I settled my nerves with a pre contest beer
The pit crew warmed up by drinking their tea; then eating a croissant & a doughnut (or three)
Ready for action for the start line we made; the race officer said ‘the first race course is laid’
The skipper said “Right guys now this is my call” & we all gathered around to listen to Paul
“We’ll put the sun in our faces and close haul on port tack”………………….. 
So we broad reached to starboard with the sun at our backs

“Not quite the game plan” said the skip, with a sigh; “We’ll do better yet” yelled  the crew in reply
Charging the line on the course we had charted;…..we promptly charged back cos race 2 hadn’t started
“We can only improve from the position we’re in,” said Richard and Carl with stout hearts & a grin
“Well” replied Matt, “we have got sod all to lose; from here at the back we’ll cover all the fleet’s  moves”
We made up 12 places in the course of that race so we managed to wipe some of the egg from our face

Later;  Matt in his shorts and me in my cap were prepping the foredeck for the next racing lap
When from aft of the mast there arose such a clatter that we leapt from our chores to see what was the matter
Down to the cockpit we raced in a flash expecting any second to hear a loud splash
But running toward us with boat hook held ready; came flying our Dutchman yelling “boys hold me steady!”
He tried in vain effort bags of crisps to impale; like a harpoonin’ Ahab in pursuit of his whale
Though just like the story they evaded his stab and were caught at the stern by Kim with a grab

With much slicker sailing we were 10th in race 3; out thinking the fleet with a run to the lee
Pulling on halyards, with all of our might we were fast with both launching and retrieving our kite
Fine tuning the sheet and haul in on the guy, ease off the Cunningham then downwind we’d fly
Gybed round the mark, ported 62 then close hauled the last beat like a clipper we flew
This last of the day was our best race by far and pleased with our progress we set course for the bar

We figured we should motor to Cowes for the dinner; all of us wiser;…. at least one of us thinner
Then “ Bugger! Oh sod it! The props going round but we’re not moving forward or covering ground;
We’ll just have to sail in like they did in old days”;  so we tacked up Medina to many’s curious gaze
We made it in time to inhale lots more beer…; well that’s what I did – “stops dehydration my dear”
And finished the night swiftly swopping our boat ; so ending day 2 of our weekend afloat

Sunday began with Tim’s “morning to all”; Richard’s dawn tea’s maid; and red eyes for Paul
 We breakfasted quick and were out to the start; ready for action “to win; not take part!”
We headed inshore to seek a tide eddy; the main fleet did battle against 4 knots steady
Downwind of the mark amidst panics and broaches our training proved the value in what Paul had coached us
We moved up 8 places with our spinnaker tricks and finished race 4 in an excellent 6th

Then to our last race though we didn’t know then; that the wind & the tide would sort boys from the men
Like a true racing team Paul’s crew downwind came; and he cajoled and he guided and called them by name
“Grind Richard, Ease Michael, ease the mainsheet too Tim
Release Matt, Sheet in Carl; halyard to Mark could you Kim?”
Avoiding the carnage all around we sailed on; And finished in tenth having had to go long

Finishing 12th overall was a pretty good feat; but my favourite moment’s looking back at the fleet
Beam reaching towards us with spinnakers up; as I drained my post race 4 tea from my cup
I know that I speak both for Kim & for me that we’ve had a great time with you all out at sea
We’d be thrilled to go sailing with all or a few & maybe invite others to come join this great crew
To my crewmates I have these few words now to write ….
Happy sailing to all and to you all a good night.

Mark Henry, July 2010

An excellent regatta for the Henley team

The Cranfield MBA Regatta 2010 took place at the weekend. The weather was glorious with hot sun and good winds resulting in near-perfect sailing conditions. The biggest ever entry included seventeen boats from Cranfield plus over ten other business schools.

The Henley crew finished 12th out of 37 boats, a massive improvement on last year and the result of training, good leadership and a lot of hard work by all the team. Well done everyone!

We will be posting some more thoughts on the weekend’s sailing and social activities together with photos and video clips shortly.

Ready to race!

The Henley team are looking forward to the Cranfield MBA Regatta on the 9th to 11th July. We have been told to expect an entry of around 30 boats this year so competition will be very fierce. Our final crew are:

  • Paul Bennett (skipper)
  • Tim Lawson
  • Richard Steele
  • Carl de Verteuil
  • Matt Steele
  • Kim Maclarty
  • Michiel Commandeur
  • Mark Henry

We will be out on the water all day on Friday 9th getting used to the boat and making sure all the gear is in working order. More news soon.