It was a cool, blowy, showery day; a very gusty southeaster, and lots of rain about.
In the event, 6 boats presented and had a fun race. We had the Harbour largely to ourselves, and loads of wind.
The gate start went wen well enough; as T&T sailed from the Darling Point wharf towards Clarke Island, all was very slow, as we were in the lee of the Point. Chenonceau was the first to cross behind us and took off like a startled rabbit; Corinna was uncharacteristically slow to start, but soon we were all out of the lee, steaming across Double Bay on a squarish reach. Chenonceau made the best of it, and gybed first at Point Piper, and headed for Taylor’s Bay on reach just ahead of square; G-Forcefollowed, with T&T the first of the smaller yachts, then Smitten, Umbakumba, with Corinna last
Chenonceau led all the way to the bottom mark at Sow’n Pigs; behind her Smitten pushed past Time & Tide to challenge G-Force for second pace. Throughout all this, only Corinna had flown a spinnaker, seeking to make ground from a slow start. Make ground she did, but getting the kite down cost time and she was still well back at the bottom mark.
The windward leg, from Sown’n Pigs to Shark Island, was decisive. Chenonceau andTime & Tide both lost places, unable to maintain height in the very gusty (15-25 knot) breeze. G-Force took the lead, Smitten moved into second and Corinna into third, sailing an impressive unwind leg along the left side of the course.
The last leg was gusty but uneventful, a reach just forward of square; except for Smitten, which suffered a mechanical hitch, and lost a couple of places.
The rain stayed away until we had all unrigged and were ashore; except perhaps for Gerry in Umbakumba, who had an hour’s run to his mooring in Balmain.
Over the line:
Time & Tide
Crews from all the other yachts enjoyed a drink, with a rain squall thumping the Clubhouse roof.
We are glad enough to have escaped the rain; the wind had dominated the afternoon, we had all coped and the race had been enjoyable
We sail again the first Sunday in May