Sailing Report 22nd October 2018.
Wet and Wild start to the season!
The new sailing season got off to a slow start this year with a few boats not having finished their off season maintenance and the weather being less than ideal, the first Thursday and Weekend races were abandoned before the start.
Weekend before last, saw the first race of the new Basin Chase series (with a new slightly modified course for this year). 6 boats took to the water for the 1pm scratch start. Reigning club champion Southern Cross (Greg, Lynne and Captain Billy) and Equinox (Ken and Jeanette) had a good battle up the first Leg, followed by new boat Son of Coco (Castle 650 – Paul and Lynne), HooRoo (Andy and Lou), then Battle of the Timpenny’s between Fly Navy Too (Greg and Ronda) and Serendipity (Dick and son). With the wind shifting, the right side of the course was favoured and Son of Coco rounded the first mark ahead of the bigger boats. Then it was off the breeze all the way to Tallyan Point before a long work back to the finish in Jewfish Bay. Fly Navy Too would have finished slightly better placed if not for a slight navigational error, resulting in bumping into the hard stuff, followed by some strong instruction from the skipper’s better half.
First on handicap after some excellent two handed sailing was Equinox, followed by new boat Son of Coco, then Club champs Southern Cross in third. Serendipity overtook HooRoo on the last work to claim 4th spot, then Fly Navy Too, and HooRoo rounding out the fleet.
Last Saturday was the first of the Outside course. 6 brave boats, ignored a less than promising forecast for the 1pm scratch Start. With storm clouds threatening, a close start saw Equinox and Southern Cross again battle for the lead on the first work in a light nor’easter. HooRoo, Fly Navy Too and Son of Coco having a good three way tussle behind and then the first outing for Optimist (Sandra and Darren) who opted for a safer start just behind the main pack.
With ominous clouds building, Southern Cross and Equinox battled around the first triangle, with the next three boats swapping places many times. Then in the classic “Calm before the storm”, the wind died away to nothing and the southerly storm front appeared over Jewfish bay. With heavy rain now seen on the water and possible strong winds, three boats decided that was enough fun for one day and headed for the safety of the River. The remaining three boats Equinox, Fly Navy Too and HooRoo, dropped spinnakers, battened down the hatches, put on the wet weather gear and decided to ride out the storm. Luckily the front passed with only moderate winds from the south, but with fairly heavy rain and a small amount of hail. The biggest worry was probably the lightning that was around.
Equinox had managed to get most of the way back up the final leg before the wind change and was therefore lucky enough to finish in a fairly favourable breeze. Not so much for Fly Navy Too and HooRoo who had to spend about 15 minute becalmed before a zephyr of breeze from the south east returned, just strong enough for to get them over the line with spinnakers back up!
For the second race in a row, Equinox was first on Handicap (and first boat to finish), 2nd was HooRoo and 3rd Fly Navy Too. All boats and crew returned safely, if a little moist, back to the river.
Once again Phil (The Wind Whisperer) and Ray (The Duck), were on the committee boat doing their usually excellent job, and enduring some fairly damp conditions. We couldn’t do it without them.
Andy and Louisa
Basin Chase Race 1: 1st Equinox, 2nd Son of Coco, 3rd Southern Cross, 4th Serendipity, 5th Fly Navy Too, 6th HooRoo.
Outside Course Race 1: 1st Equinox, 2nd HooRoo, 3rd Fly Navy Too.