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posted Feb 7, 2013, 2:57 AM by Mark Tobin

After a wet and windy Saturday those brave enough to front up on Sunday for Race 3 of the Jervis Bay Cruising Yacht Clubs, Parkhaven Motor Lodge sponsored, Summer Series were pleased to be faced with fine although overcast conditions.  With a steady 15 to 20 knot south south west wind, with the odd gust, the Vice Commodore Shane Firkin set a course down to the far end of Collingwood Beach, Vincentia.   As the 13 boats circled awaiting starters orders all opted for an early reef and modest headsail as the gusts built, a wise choice as it turned out.  The Navy with their usual optimism delivered 2 boats for the race, Friendship helmed by Jim McDonald and Alexander with Matt ?? and his crew making it six boats for the Div.1 fleet.  With the season hotting up more and more carbon and Kevlar sails were appearing with Tony Byrnes Mohawk sporting its carbon main for the first time.  Too rough for the start boat the radio countdown start worked a treat for Manly Too with Mick Linhart and his expert crew fresh from racing in Hamilton Island, nail the start with a storming run to the start line to break away with a clear lead with Cougar hot on their heels.  The fresh breezes, normally favouring the catamarans but the tight work towards Vincentia did not allow the ‘Lords’ on Overture and Al Leach and crew on Tranquillity to stretch their legs and the monohulls pulled ahead.  Those that sailed into the knock off Huskisson won out as they tacked back towards the bottom mark with Collingwood Beach presenting its usual testing conditions with gusts and lulls and swirling winds allowing the smaller boats of Bill Dicker on Leeuwin and Craig Tooker on Ripla to close on the front runners.  That changed as the leaders rounded D3 and reached off across the bay toward Long Beach for the last mark before heading home.  With gusts reaching the occasional 30 knots there was no sign of spinnakers.   Two boats took the option to retire, Ripla deciding to save their boat for another day headed home early and Brain Saunders Sea Change suffering mainsheet damage.  Cougar was first over the line a matter of minutes ahead of Manly Too with Overture across third.  Next to feature was Shane Firkins Quintessence ahead of Mohawk for one of their best finishes of the year.  Div.2 big boat Motion with Dave Churchwood and his sole crew member Ian Tibby crossed first ahead of Leeuwin with the unusual sight of  Rock Hopper bringing up the rear.  Winners on the day were Quintessence for Div.1, Motion Div.2 and Overture for the Multies.  Next race is Saturday February 16th with a finish off Long Beach for the famed Commodores Cocktail Party and overnight for those willing with plenty of partying planned.  Don’t miss it.