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Ahoy Club Summer Series Reveler

Twenty yachts across the three club divisions lined up for yet another fantastic iteration of the Club Summer Series. From an enjoyment perspective, this series is lining up to be a real gem, with a club full of infectiously smiling faces on the deck after racing on each of the three race dates in the series so far.

The only partially unsmiley (but mostly smiley nonetheless) faces on the day belonged to the couple of yachts’ crews that had breakages on the water and retired from racing…sorry and bad luck for that guys, but glad to see you were all safe and still enjoying a beer together on the deck afterwards.

So far in this series, we’ve enjoyed two races per race date. That means that in the three dates we’ve had, six races have already been completed.

Another fabulous attribute of this series, is that majority of the courses have been set such that all divisions sail the same course and have the same start, so one can have an overall score. You’re not just racing within your division, you are also racing against the whole fleet.

The only exception to this was the first race date, where Division 3 was set shorter courses. In hindsight, this is a shame because the other races in the series have shown that the top division 3 yachts can happily compete for the overall honours on handicap in the whole fleet. It will be interesting to have the overall fleet results too at the end of the series.

Typically, on each race date, there’s been is a short sprint race to start with, and then a longer bay race. Also, the start time is earlier, so despite the two races, we seem to finish earlier too, giving all sailors some valuable time together to chat over a beer, or even have time to watch the rugby (as bad as it was for the poor Stormers again on this evening).

The first race was a sprint: start BH.#10 (p), PE (p), WB (p), PE (s), finish BH.#10 (s) (4.4 miles)

Noel Mallison, the race officer on the day, was concerned that with a light westerly still blowing at the bridge just twenty minutes before the first start, the racing would be a lottery across the transition to the more southerly wind. However, bang on the PredictWind forecast, the southerly came through at 13h00, initially very blustery, and quickly moved south east, with strong shifts and gusts to play with.

By the second race, the wind had settled and was not nearly as blustery.

The day saw the birth and blessing of a new mark, called Sunset (because that’s cool, but also because it’s laid off Sunset Beach) which allows for the opportunity to stretch the legs a little with a leg distance of 3.6 miles bearing 000°T from Paarden Eiland to Sunset. In today’s conditions, it was a deep starboard run, with a number of yachts gybing unless they could sail deep from the onset.

The second course was: start BH.#10 (p), PE (p), Sunset (s), PE (s), finish BH.#10 (s) (9.6 miles)

On the long beat back from Sunset to Paarden Eiland, it was great fun adjusting to the shifts, and it would have been very interesting if it was a true VMG beat, because there would have been big gains and losses on those shifts…

Noel and the bridge crew of Toni and Joanne did a great job communicating to the fleet throughout the day, and the courses suited the mood and conditions so nicely.

I am very pleased that the Division 2 yacht Regardless did so well today, winning both races overall. This yacht is the first Simonis 35 to be built in 1990 or 1991, and it has gone through an extensive upgrade since it returned to our club from FBYC last year. Also, the Division 3 yachts Farmed, Hors d Oeuvre and Ava (sans spinnaker) did very well today. It’s a wake up call to the whole fleet, and it’s a positive challenge for us all to lift our game.

You can find the overall fleet results for both races together with the divisional results on the club website.

The last race date in this very enjoyable series is in a fortnight, 10 May. This will also be the last race date in this year’s club championship. Here’s holding thumbs for yet another great afternoon’s sailing.

Sailing into the sunset


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