News‎ > ‎

Cold South-easterly winds challenge yachts in JBCYC Spring Series races

posted Nov 15, 2020, 6:46 PM by David Churchward

On Sunday November 8th, with a cold south-easterly wind blowing the fleet of the Jervis Bay Cruising Yacht Club took to the waters of Jervis Bay for a day of racing.

The day got underway with the Division 2 yachts running the previously postponed round 2 of their Spring Series. Starting at 10am in choppy seas with a light South-easterly winds under 10 knots; The five yachts raced around a short 3.8 nautical mile course at the bays northern end. 

Tn a close start Pat Grogan skippering Sirocco, Peter Cowman at the helm of Double Time, and Steve Lee’s Y-Knot all converged on the 1st race mark. Sirocco rounded the mark in the lead followed by Y-knot. Sirocco and Y-knot pulled away from the other boats in the division as they raced east across the bay. Y-knot passed Sirocco and extended its lead, staying in front until the races end.

Y-knot crossed the finish line 1st in 45 minutes only just over a minute ahead of Sirocco. Reflections crossed 3rd in 50 minutes, just 30 seconds ahead of Double time. Wotalife stayed in touch with the fleet finishing the race in just over 60 minutes.

Once handicaps were applied Denis Meredith, Wotalife, was awarded 1st place with Pat Grogan, Sirocco, 2nd, and Reflections 3rd.

After a brief break the scheduled race 4 of the Spring Series got underway. With the starts of the divisions staggered Division 2 started first. 

They tackled a 10.7 nautical mile course, and with winds from the SE picking up to over 15 knots, Double Time beat the other yachts to the 1st mark. Y-Knot and Sirocco chased Double Time as they headed across. As they approached Long Beach Y-Knot slipped past Double Time into the lead.

With the wind easing Double Time and Reflections tacked out into the bay, chasing more wind and boat speed. Y-Knott and Sirocco stayed close to shore as they headed towards Honeymoon Bay, covering less distance and gambling on the wind picking up.

As the boats passed the mark off Honeymoon Y-knot held onto the lead and Sirocco had moved into 2nd place. Heading back up the bay with Sirocco chasing Y-Knot both yachts flew their spinnakers. 

The yachts then headed to Callala Beach and crossed the bay again towards Green Point before turning to the finish line. Sirocco had a final spinnaker run to the finish but could not catch Y-Knot.

Y-Knot crossed the finish line in 2 hours 16 minutes, 14 minutes ahead of Sirocco. Reflections finished 13 minutes further back with Double Time 2 minutes behind. Once handicaps were applied Steve Lee, Y-Knot, retained 1st place with Brian Horley, Reflections, moving up to 2nd and Peter Cowman, Double Time, 3rd.

The Division 1 race started 5 minutes after Division 2, with Invincible, helmed by Trevor Kanaar just beating Rod Targa in the Navy entry Friendship to the 1stmark. 

The boats then crossed to the eastern side of the bay for the run down passed Honeymoon Bay to Longnose Point. With the breeze starting to drop the race became a battle of tactics with some yachts taking the shorter route close to shore and others moving into the bay chasing more wind and boat speed.

Element staying close to shore took advantage of a favourable wind shift and was able to take the lead before reaching Longnose Point. With the SE winds dropping to 7 knots Element and Tranquillity duelled for the lead as they raced back up the bay, Element flying their spinnaker and Tranquillity deploying their screecher.

The winds picked up again as the fleet crisscrossed the bay Bodacious, with its spinnaker flying making significant ground on the leading yachts. The finish became a race to the line between Element and Tranquillity with Element crossing 1st in a time of 2 hours 34 minutes less than a minute ahead of Tranquillity. Out of the Blue crossed 3rd four minutes behind Tranquillity.

Once the handicaps were applied to Division 1 Rob Chittendon, Element, was awarded 1st with Trevor Kanaar, Invincible, 2nd and Steve Simpson, Bodacious, 3rd.

With only one race the Spring Series for Division 1 left to run Friendship on 6 points is leading Invincible on 7 points with Tranquillity third on 8 points. 

Division 2 will try to run its final two races next race day. Y-Knott is currently leading the series on 2 points with Sirocco on 4, Reflections on 6 and Double Time on 6. Any of these boats still has a chance to win the series.