Gillette Series 9 – 12th June 2019

Well it was a pretty miserable night with persistent rain and very little wind. There was quite a discussion on the sun deck (really) as to whether it was worth going out. Eventually there was a sort of domino effect and we finished up with a fleet of eight, just when Ellen thought she might escape SOOD duty! There were various motivations for going out, Jemima, Newton and Ron were in with a chance of Series points towards the top of the leader board. Sally & Stuart went out because Dave & Ann went out and they needed to keep tabs on them in the Leaders’ own competition. Rhys and Hugh went out in a Feva to give Rhys some double handed sailing and Dean & Nick and Mike A went out because they were daft enough to do so!

The wind was supposed to be about 5 mph from the ESE, but it was less than that and what there was coming from all over the place.Ellen wisely set a short course with a first mark as X (roughly halfway between 6 and 7) then A (going up towards the buoy line), B (about halfway between the buoy line and 8) then 8 itself and back through the start. This was basically a box course in the hope that somewhere you would get a beat or a reach or a run at sometime!

It turned out to be a two lap race and Mike A (Lightning) led at the end of the first lap followed by Dean & Nick (Vago), perhaps not as daft as they look! They had ousted Newton from his early 2nd place.  Five minutes later Dave & Ann (Leader) came through in 4th, about two minutes ahead of Jemima (Oppie) in 5th. Then Ron (Mirror) and Rhys & Hugh (Feva) crossed the line one minute apart in 6th and 7th.   At this point Sally & Stuart had not long crossed the start line and were hoping for a stiff tail wind.

On the second lap Dean & Nick and Newton were inexorably closing Mike down and they both (well all) passed him on the way down to 8 with Dean & Nick drawing away at the front. They crossed the line about four minutes ahead of Newton. Meanwhile Mike had got stuck at 8 and eventually crossed the line seven minutes behind Newton and only three minutes ahead of Dave & Ann in 4th place (which was a close finish on a night like this). Further back the boys (and the girl) were in bother as the wind had now disappeared! It took Ron about 10 minutes just to round 8 and he finally crossed the line in 5th place about thirteen minutes after Dave & Ann. At the back Jemima and Rhys & Hugh demonstrated remarkable perseverance crossing the line ten minutes after Ron, but giving us a thrilling finish with only five seconds between them. Sally & Stuart pragmatically decide to retire, which was just as well as otherwise we would be taking breakfast out to them!

Order on the water was- 1st Dean & Nick (which may be a first ever?) 2nd Newton; 3rd Mike A; 4th Dave & Ann; 5th Ron; 6th Jemima; 7th Rhys & Hugh

On corrected time the only change is Jemima changing positions with Ron.

Congratulations to the Jones boys, pity it was not a cup race, as last year they finished third in three series and got nowt!

Thanks to the very wet Ellen and OOD Team of Graham K, Kate T, Nick J, Nigel L and Simon B.

Well for some of them not quite as wet as Ellen moved to the flagpole adjacent to the clubhouse and was able to officiate under cover. This caused some consternation on the water when the finishers could see no sign of life around the start flagpole and thought everyone had packed up for the night!