Here's the latest Big Boat Race Report from Jonathan Stone:
It was a cool winter afternoon with a 5-10 knot southerly breeze ………. overcast, with only occasional sunshine.
Time & Tide sailed to Darling Point to begin sailing along the start line for a gate start. (There is a weakness in this procedure: in a southerly as today, we were in the lee of the Point, and we took forever to get moving. I will try and figure out some way of avoiding this problem - maybe starting the run a couple of hundred metres north of the Point)
As it was our visiting Jeanneau 30-odd footer Liaison won the start. She found a bit of breeze, was the first to cross behind our transom and was halfway across Double Bay before the rest of us got going. Time & Tide and Corinna - the smaller boats - did next best and were close together at the first mark. T&T had an overlap and turned just ahead of Corinna, but the wind was light and Corinna turned wide, getting the best of wind and moving ahead.
Liaison led the way to Taylor’s Bay but went very high, towards Bradley’s Head; and did not prosper there. Corinna sailed low, into the centre of the Harbour and hoisted her spinnaker, and cruised into the lead. On T&T, we poled our biggest headsail and did well, moving past Liaison into second place, but well behind the Corinna. Behind the two smaller boats the three 30 footers struggled for downwind speed. It was a close reach to Sow ’n Pigs but no changes of place, though Liaison found enough to challenge T&T all the way.
At Sow’n Pigs, Corinna and then Time and Tide began the work to Shark Island by sailing left, into Watson’s Bay; it was a good move, which allowed us to take advantage of any easterly shifts that came. Corinna did much the better and held a very comfortable lead from there to the finish. Time & Tide chased, as did Liaison, who slid into second place half way up the work. T&T tacked and ducked and - but for some traffic at the Shark Island mark - might have challenged for second place again.
As it was we all had a quiet last leg - ending a fun race, challenging in the ways that light airs always are.
We gathered in the 18 footer club (there was a family party in the DBSC Clubhouse) for a drink. Mind you, it wasn’t much quieter in the 18s - at this time of year the TV screens were showing the French Open and the local footy; and it was the day of terror attacks on London Bridge.
So we talked of sailing and the race and terror and more about the race and felt very lucky to have enjoyed peaceful, safe afternoon.
Over the line:
Time & Tide
We race next on July 2.