I don't know how good this report will be: driving home it seemed to me that the events of the next two had overwritten it in my mind... We'll see. Weather, it was sort of F2ish, but really pretty variable. The first lap was windy, the second and third ones were pretty quiet and a bit more wind came in for the last lap... I forgot to take a note of the course. Lets think, a long beat, a close reach across to in front of the clubhouse, a shortish run, a reasonably long broadish reach across the beat down to the bottom of the reservoir and a shy reach back to the start... Does that sound right?
The anniversary race is two starts of course, Lasers and faster in the first start, mainly Solos in the second one. We shall draw a veil of anonymity over the Laser who thought a port tack start was going to be a good idea with the faster boats at the starboard end of the line. Fortunately a crash tack in a boat not well adapted for crash tacking minimised the potential impact, because otherwise there would have been a very sharp Canoe bow embedded a long way into his boat... The windward mark also saw a lot of action as four boats arrived more or less at the same time... The Canoe was the earliest, but a shift in the last seconds put me the wrong side of the mark, and I figured I'd used up enough luck at the start in crash tacking close quarters manouvers for tacking onto port and back under the bows of the other three to be a good idea, so baled out and gybed round... Peter Curtis, in his RS500 this time, inherited the lead and kept it for the remainder of the race, but there were a good few snakes and ladders on the course, and there were a good few place changes and so on. My memory pretty much fails me for the rest of the race... I spent rather more time near Mike Storey, in his EPS this month, than I liked, so he was doing OK. Julie Harrison, with Carl Mayhew at the business end of an RS200 were also doing well, but picked up what must have been a positive Anaconda on I think the third lap, which I reckon lost them a good minute when they seemed to get stuck in a completely different wind pattern to everyone else.
What the Solos and Lasers were up to during the race I honestly have no idea I'm afraid, perhaps some of you would like to post comments. Gareth ended up best of the Solos, that much is obvious from the results, whilst Dave Simpson was leading Laser at the end. There was a spectacular finishing bunch amongst the Lasers: I do remember seeing that, the race recorder's nightmare of course.
So results. Well, full results are here. Gareth Griffiths won the race by, what, 13 seconds, with Julie Harrison 2nd, Mike Storey (EPS) third and Peter Curtis (RS500) 4th. Dave Simpson (Laser) and Mervyn Cinnamond (Solo) rounded out the top 6. The personal handicap top six were CJ Cavallari, Dave Simpson, Mervyn Cinnamond, John Smith, Brian Greenaway and Tony Butler.
Series Placings... We have two races left to go, and assuming there are no cancellations it will be your best three results that count. In the scratch series Gareth Griffiths has 4 wins already, so he's pretty much got his hands on the trophy now. Second place, on the other hand, is still very much up for grabs: any of Peter Curtis, Rob Pettit or Mike Storey could take it, as could a couple of others if they win both remaining races. The personal series is still quite open, although the smart money says it will be between Ian Hamilton (Xenon)
(who won the Wednesday series personal handicap) and George Woolhouse (Topper). The remaining places could go almost anywhere at the moment.