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A fresh southerly results in some exciting sailing

posted Jan 31, 2017, 2:39 PM by Rick Early   [ updated Jan 31, 2017, 11:41 PM ]

The third club championship race in the Tahmoor Rural summer series was held last Sunday 29th Jan.  The race was run in a near ideal wind conditions - 15 – 20 knots SSW. There were tight battles in all three divisions. The performance of “SasSea” (Div 3) and the continued improvement of “Relentless” (Div 2) were just two of the highlights on the day. The club welcomed new members (Brain and Kay Horley) and a new Div. 1 boat (“Wine Down” – Beneteau 39.)

The forecast for last Sunday’s race was for a light 10 knot (SSW).  Just prior to getting out on the water the wind seemed to be even less than this, so a slow race was anticipated.  Everyone was pleasantly surprised when they were greeted with 15 – 20 knots at the start.  The return of Ron and Eileen on the club starting boat was very welcomed too.  Ron and Eileen’s return also means a well earned break for Al Leach who has been calling the starts over the radio while trying to get his own boat off the line at the same time.

All three divisions started together.  In Div. 1 “Friendship” got the cleanest start and took the bottle of wine for reaching S1 first.  In Div. 2 the wine went to “Relentless” while in Div. 3 “Tranquility” looked to have the prize in the bag but was just beaten to the mark by “SasSea” 

On the first leg “Friendship” appeared to veer of course allowing the two Bavarias (“Manly Too” and “Sojourn 3”) to move past.  Not far back “Invincible” and “Wine Down” were in a tussle which, was too last most of the race.  In Div. 2 “Relentless” was in front but holding off a strong challenge from “Motion”, this was also ongoing too.  In Div. 3 “SasSea” was in command with “Tranquility” and “Overture” (with Kevin Lord and new part owner Peter Robinson aboard) not far behind.  In many ways the first leg set the scene for the remainder of the race.

The battle for line honours in Div. 1 was a tight contest between “Manly Too” and “Sojourn 3”.  Both boats were evenly matched in speed so a mistake from either could be costly.  “Manly Too” sailed very smoothly to hold off a late challenge from “Sojourn 3” and cross the line first.  ““Friendship” was third across the line.  “Wine Down” and “Invincible” traded places a few times but “Wine Down” eventually got the upper hand to finish 4th, with "Invincible" in 5th.

The battle in Div. 2 was one of the race highlights.  The ever-improving “Relentless” has had her own way in recent weeks but the return of “Motion” changed things somewhat.  After jostling for the lead most of the race “Relentless” eventually took control to cross the line less than a minute in front. “Matana” crossed third.

The Div. 3 catamarans revelled in the 15 – 20 knots.  “SasSea” showed excellent boat speed to gradually extend her divisional lead and stay in touch with the leading Div. 1 boats.  All three “cats” were matching it for boat speed with most of the Div.1 boats.  “SasSea” crossed the line first followed by “Tranquility” and then “Overture”.  Although “SasSea” appears to have a speed advantage in Div. 3 at present “Tranquility” has a new mainsail on order. This should make things interesting in the coming weeks.

On handicap, the prizes went to: Manly Too and Sojourn 3 (Div.1); Friendship and Motion (Div. 2); SasSea and Tranquility (Div. 3).

The race was followed by a BBQ, kindly prepared by Kerry Leach.  Some members enjoyed the BBQ so much they stayed on for sundown refreshments.

The next race will be held on Sunday February 12th.  It’s championship race in the Tahmoor Rural summer series.