Sunday 13th Dec
First off, a correction to last week's pursuit results has been posted. With quite a number of capsizes and a relatively short course some boats were lapped, which was not reflected in the previous results. If you do ever wish to query the posted results then Peter Cutis is the man to contact.
Secondly, last week's report failed to mention the temporary demise of the DB Mk2B floating boat garage which had been weathering the autumn gales just fine. However, when the boat was removed from its cosy shelter a particularly vicious gust caused the front to dip spectacularly and the whole structure flipped. So a slight tweak is required when it gets refloated to improve the stability when not housing a boat. The good news is that the boat inside was dry and CLEAN, so mission accomplished in that regard.
On to Sunday's racing, which in contrast to much of the autumn was a light wind drifter. Saturday was so windy that only 1 of the scheduled 3 races were sailed at the Datchet Flyer handicap event up the road, but Sunday dawned light and drizzly with the wind forecast only to drop. What we had was F1 and easterly, forecast to veer. A very respectable 23 boats drifted out to find the wind had backed, making the beat very one-legged and increasingly so as the race progressed. One of the advantages of a quadrilateral couse is that as one leg frees, another tightens, so what was the bottom reach became a bit of a beat after the first lap.
In the handicap start Mike S in the EPS got a port flyer on the very biased line as the wind dropped just before the gun and boats struggled to get down to the pin. Having shot off into an early lead, the unfortunate light wind characteristics of the EPS came into play as he slipped inexorably backwards throughout the race, finishing narrowly ahead of Paul P, the leading Solo, who started 4 minutes later!!
Paul W-A had a good race in Aero9, handily winning the Handicap fleet by 2 minutes at some expense to his knees. Kevin S won the Lasers and the aforementioned Paul P did his chances no harm in what is turning out to be a very competitive Solo series by holding off Tim L. In the Solos with 2 races to go Tim leads Mark A on tie break with better discards with Paul just a point back.
The feeble breeze then proceeded to drop to a whisper for the back-to-backs. Despite the unpromising conditions 14 boats went out again for more torture, in the form of a two lap triangle, won convincingly by Mike D in a Solo. The whisper dropped to barely a breath during the race and a 20 minute gap between first and last finisher tells its own story. For Paul W-A the temptation of a hot shower as he neared F for the second time proved too much and he bailed out of the final leg of the race.
With the reservoir a glassy flat calm, that was that for racing. Meanwhile the duty team, spent the time profitably by refloating the two safety boats that had become swamped and relaying mark 5, which regular readers will remember had disappeared earlier in the season. So providing the mooring holds during the week there should be a full complement of racing marks for next Sunday.
Its all change for Boss of The Barn this week with Gareth absent and conditions not RS500 friendly for Peter C. Well done the Solos for a clean sweep, headed by Mike D whose 3,1 edges out Tim L's 2,2, while Paul P won a 3 way tie for 3rd courtesy of his win in the first race.
Next Sunday is also Xmas party day with mulled wine and mince pies after racing to toast the refurbished Clubhouse followed by parties for kids, juniors and finishing off with an evening curry. See the links below for details.
WINTER SERIES RACING 10.30
VE FOR MO