It was not quite as windy as previous Sundays this morning about 8 – 10 mph, but it kept swinging from WSW to WNW, which made Mike A’s job of setting the start line very tricky. For the first race he set the first mark as X (on the buoy line about halfway between 5 and 6).
20 starters and there was a reasonable breeze at the start of the race, but by the time the Lasers started this had died away, which resulted in a mass rounding of the first mark. In fact, Ron (Mirror) was approaching X just as the Lasers were clearing it! Fellow early starters, Chris H (Comet), Rhys (4.7), Mike C & Sally (Leader), Will (Radial) and Dave & Ann (Leader) occupied 2nd to 6th places at the end of the first lap.
The gun went about halfway through the second lap with the final order as – 1st Chris H; 2nd Will; 3rd Mike C & Sally; 4th Rhys; 5th Dave & Ann; 6th Simon (Blaze)
Ron would have been 2nd, but unfortunately missed out the first mark on the first lap!
The wind got up a bit more for the second race and swung to the South, so the start line was adjusted, and X dropped, so the first mark was now 5, and 6 and 7 were added to the end of the course. Steve S (Solo) joined the fleet making 21 starters for the handicap race.
Simon (Blaze) was first back through the line with Julian B (D-Zero) chasing him. Then there was a slight gap before Newton & Ellen (RS200) crossed the line in 3rd place followed closely by Mike T (Laser) in 4th. About one minute later Jon (Laser) came through in 5th place followed by Bill (K1) and the Lasers of Ralph and Richard S. Chris H (Comet) was next along in 10th place, just ahead of Steve S (Solo) and Rick (Laser). About a minute later James (Laser) crossed in 12th spot with Alistair S (Laser) not far behind him and Dave & Ann (Leader) overlapping him across the line and the other Leader with Sally and Mike C right on Dave & Ann’ transom. Jeremy (Laser) was only 5 seconds behind them leading another tight group consisting of Will (Radial), Gareth E (Laser), Adrian (Laser), Ron (Mirror) and Rhys (4.7). So, the back half of the fleet was enjoying some very close sailing.
Simon increased his lead slightly on the second lap, as did Julian on the 3rd placed boat of Newton & Ellen with Mike T still chasing in 4th place. Ralph moved up two places to 5th by passing Jon and Bill. Rick also moved up two places to 9th just behind Richard S passing Chris H and Steve S in the process. Alistair also moved up two by passing Chris and James and in the Leader battle behind them Sally & Mike C had got past Dave & Ann. Further back Adrian was another to gain two places passing Will and Gareth E and Ron also got past Gareth with Rhys not far behind them.
By the end of the third lap Julian had made up some ground on Simon, but Simon was still leading. No change in position for the next two, but Jon had regained 5th place from Ralph. The 8th, 9th and 10th positions were still held by Richard, Rick and Steve, but James had moved up two places to 11th. Further back Adrian and Gareth both gained a place and Gareth, Ron and Rhys received the gun at the end of this lap.
At the end of the fourth and last lap, Simon crossed in 1st place with Julian not far behind in 2nd place and Newton & Ellen claimed 3rd with Mike T not far behind in 4th (coming home in pairs!) Ralph just pipped Jon for 5th place and Richard just pipped Bill for 7th place! In the fleet behind there were no other changes in position. The final positions on the water were –
1st Simon; 2nd Julian; 3rd Newton & Ellen; 4th Mike T; 5th Ralph; 6th Jon
On corrected time there was no change in position, which is quite unusual for our mixed fleet!
Thanks to Mike A and the OOD Team of Mike Todd, Steve George and Tony Riley.