Day 3 Race 6 by Adrian Smith

To  say  that  the forecast for Monday was inauspicious would be an understatement.  WindGuru was showing arrows from most points of the compass and with an average speed of 1mph gusting (wait for it ) 1mph !  Worryingly, as the fleet uncovered boats this prophesy looked like being fulfilled, with flags on the pier drooping limply, flying a little from the North, flying  a little from the South – all at the same time.  However, after  a  2 hour postponement the wind did seem to have settled to a sailable (albeit very light) sea breeze from the South East.  Obviously overenthused by being able to sail at all the fleet (or at least class chairman Ed Presley) was a tad keen to get away from the start line. The race officer (having none of that malarkey) pulled out the black flag for the restart – which had the desired effect.  It turned out that those who held onto starboard tack up the beat found good pressure out to the left.  Stuart Jones just pipped Adrian Smith to the windward mark – only to hit it !  Smith held onto the lead down the first reach but with Jones, and Graham Scott in pursuit.  Down the second (long , broad and tense)  reach Stuart  and Graham had just edged past Adrian.  Ben McGrane came fully into contention up the next beat so that the following run was a close fought tussle between him and Graham in particular with Stuart managing to hold onto a small lead and Adrian close behind these three.  After a gybing battle between Ben and Graham just before the bottom mark, a gun from the committee boat signalled a shortened course and the scores on the doors at the end of the race were : 1st Stuart, followed closely by Graham, Ben and Adrian. Roger White held on for a well earned 5th place.

Race 7 by Ben McGrane

The wind stabilised for the second race of the day, high wires for the light weights upwind! Stuart had taken the series lead for the first time this week by the narrowest margin. On the first beat it was the right that paid, Richard Buttner lead around the windward mark and maintain this position for the two reaches. Once on the second beat Adrian Smith continued his form after the first race, moving into the lead and never looked in danger for the remainder of the race. Mike Murley sailed home to 2nd while a match race behind started between Stuart and Ben. Both had worked through the fleet during the race and at the final windward mark Stuart was in front by the narrowest of margins. Unable to secure an overlap down the top reach, it wasn’t until the end of the final reach that positions would be decided. Ben sailed high from the gybe mark forcing Stuart to go with him, obtaining an overlap and forcing both boats high enough that they eventually both had to run to the mark. Ben was able to gain enough separation to gybe onto starboard to take the controlling position and maintain inside Stuart to the leeward mark. The extra distance sailed allowed Roger White through to a comfortable 3rd position.

So with two discards now in play Stuart leads the regatta by a single point from Ben. Neither can now be caught and so the racing tomorrow between the two should provide much entertainment (wind permitting). Adrian Smith won the day scoring 4, 1, and now moves up to 3rd position


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