Big Boat Representative, reports:
Four boats presented on a gentle, late summer afternoon. A southeasterly that had come in like a lion on Monday, was going out like lamb this Sunday.
The breeze shifted around, and died and puffed and it took patience to stay the course.
The start (thank you John) was uneventful, but a southerly swing which had offered to get us to Point Piper on a shy reach gave way to an easterly influence, and we had to work our way there. This shift advantaged T&T and Corinna, who started at the north end of the line; Chenonceau and Rockhopper started 50 metres south, further from the breeze streaming around Point Piper.
Corinna rounded the Point Piper mark first, with T&T close behind, then Chenonceau and Rockhopper. We sailed intently through the rest of the race, without these places changing.
The leg to Taylor’s Bay was a run, just starboard of square. Corinna, T&T and Chenonceau set kites, and were close together at the Taylor’s Bay mark; we all had to drop the kites and come onto the wind to reach Sow’n Pigs. T&T was the fast mover, sailing high and closing on Corinna. Chenonceau sailed lower but stayed in touch. Our crews all worked to stow spinnakers and poles, re-lay brace and sheet and have things tidy for the leg south to Shark Island
This was a close reach; too close (as Corinna demonstrated) to set a kite. Whenever the wind puffed the 30+ footers showed their greater hull speed; but mostly it stayed light and the smaller boats fared better. On that leg too, T&T did best but not well enough to challenge for the lead, and Corinna rounded the island first, set her kite quickly and headed for the finish.
On T&T, our kite set smoothly but, however we trimmed, we were slower than Corinna. We kept our distance from Chenonceau, but could find no way forward.
It was a race which tested our light wind skills - maintaining speed upwind, tacking (or not) on headers, kite handling and trimming.
A lot of fun.
Across the line:
Time & Tide
We race next on March 1