Saturday’s races felt far more like a summer series than a winter one. As the crews prepared the boats, it felt like we were heading out for battle. We all knew a very stiff south-easter was ready to test us to the limit.
Before I continue with the race report, I would like to remind everyone that when you return to RCYC, you MUST sail in on the starboard side of the Duncan Dock entrance. Most of the fleet did not do this on Saturday and Port Control have raised this as an issue. PLEASE comply with the harbour regulations. Especially as our lease comes to an end.
The influence of Table Mountain on the wind in Table Bay is quite remarkable. Metres away from balmy conditions just off the start line, the wind was already blowing over 25 knots and building. The race officer decided to hold the long race first in case the conditions became too severe to fit in a second race.
Class A had four boats on the start line, Class B three and Class C also had four. Tin Tin was not racing as she had elected to sail round to Simonstown for the Spring Regatta, which opened the door for DARG Shadowfax to get a podium position in the series in Class B.
The runs from Harken to Milnerton and again from No 8 to Blouberg in the first race were exhilarating. On Hollard Jacana we were cruising in the low teens with gusts pushing us up to over 16 knots. Off to our port Mwah and Maestro were doing much the same.
Class A was won by Hollard Jacana with Mwah in second and Maestro in third. Assagai had to retire with damage and they would not be the last boat to have to do this. Class B had Scarlet Sun cross the line first followed by Nuthr Witch and then DARG Shadowfax, who had broken one of their runners just before the start. Peter Bam and his team on Hors d’Ouvre won class C, with Farmed in second, Ava in third and Cabaray in 4th.
The race officer elected to sail a second sprint race, despite some tired crew hoping to be sent back to the bar. Maestro decided they would sit this race out and with Assagai out, only Mwah and Hollard Jacana were left in Class A.
On the final leg from Harken to the finish Hollard Jacana were hit by a double whammy when the jib pulled out of the track for the second time and, while trying to wrestle the sail onto the deck, the steering broke, leaving them drifting towards the dolosse. Mwah finished their race and immediately came back to stand by Jacana in case they needed help. Fortunately after getting the main down and the emergency tiller fitted, Jacana were able to motor back to their mooring without any assistance.
In Class A Mwah took the win in the final race and won the series overall. Hollard Jacana were second in the series and Maestro third. Class B saw the same finish order as in the first race. This meant Nuthr Witch won the Winter Series overall with Scarlet Sun in second and DARG Shadowfax in third. In Class C the final race was won by Hors d’Ouvre followed by Ava, then Farmed and Cabaray. Our fearless leader on Farmed won the series overall with Hors d’Ouvre in second and Colin Horton’s Ava in third.
A big thank you to the bridge crew and to Drifter Brewing Company for sponsoring the series – Andrew Collins