Usually at this time of year, the “Doctor” is making its presence felt which makes double handed sailing even more of a challenge. Last Saturday’s second race in the Kling Double hand series was an exception to the rule, turning into one of those days that gets chalked up as one of the great sails of the season. No “pumping” SE, instead, a perfect 10-13kt W/SW breeze, along with a long lazy swell from the SW. Perfect sailing conditions’ well ordered! The 21 strong fleet comprising 9 Class 1 yachts (PHRF >1.0) and 12 class 2 yachts (PHRF < 1.0) lined up for a perfect afternoon on the “puddle”.
With a forecast of a mod to fresh South Westerly wind for the day, the course led the fleet from the usual bridge hut start past #4 mark out toward Robben Island, with Class 2 yachts tacking toward Barker Rock at the #2 mark & the Class 1 yachts making the turn at the Fairway Buoy (Landfall or Racon Mark, whichever reference grabs the fancy!).
The all-class start was fairly orderly despite the significant bias tempting a number of yachts onto a port tack start. The ever vigilant bridge recalled two over-eager yachts, while the rest ekedout their course past #4 to their respective marks. With the J133 Jacana & the new Beneteau 40 leading the charge, the fleet reveled in the perfect conditions up the beat to Barker Rock with Class 1 & 2 fleet mixing it up again off Bantry Bay & around the rock, before the reach back to #2, #8 & to the finish. A brief encounter with an approaching seismic survey vessel at the Landfall mark was an interesting “David & Goliath” moment – amicably resolved with “David” standing down this time!
The four L26’s sailing, were particularly close, with seconds separating them at the end. Great to see the RCYC academy boats honing their skills in the short handed series. Another race within a race was seen with the two Charger 33’s taking turns in taking the line-honours home, with Shadowfax finally getting the better of FTI Flyer in that duel. The Astove 30 “Humdinger”, with John Waller & William Gubb sailed a great race and took the podium in Class 2.
Class one finishing results had the first four yachts separated by just 3 minutes on corrected time over the 13 mile course. The J133 “Jacana”, with Patrick Holloway & Neil Gregory, took the honoursin the Class 1 fleet.
The perfect afternoon on the water was complemented by an equally enjoyable social meet on the deck at the club afterwards, washed down with some great wine courtesy of Kling Wines.
Yet another great race, in the Kling Double Handed series, that keeps us all coming back for more. It’s great to see the growing fleet with this series firmly established as a “not to be missed” event on the sailing calendar.
See you all at the third race in the six race series, scheduled for Saturday 8th March.