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Skippers gamble on shifting winds in Round 3 of the JBCYC Spring Series

posted Nov 8, 2019, 5:08 AM by David Churchward   [ updated Nov 8, 2019, 5:09 AM ]

On Sunday 27th October the Jervis Bay Cruising Yacht Club ran the 3rd round of its Mountain Ridge Wines Spring Series. 14 yachts turned up to compete on a clear Spring day with the winds forecast to shift and strengthen. 

The 9 larger Division 1 yachts raced along a 11.6 nautical mile course, and the 5 smaller Division 2 boats took on 9.9 nautical mile circuit. 

The race started in light SE winds, blowing 10 knots. In Division 1 the Navy entry, Friendship, skippered by Wayne Prior got the best start and led the division into the SE winds to the 1st mark. Then the fleet split, with Friendship heading South down the bay followed by Rick Early’s boat Sojourn 3. Alan Leach in Tranquillity, followed by John Lawrence in Sas Sea, tacked and headed to the bays eastern shore taking a gamble on an early shift in the winds to NE. 

When the NE winds hit the eastern edge of the bay first, Tranquillity had clear run to the next mark, near Long Beach, while Friendship was caught having to work back into the wind to round the mark. 

Tranquillity took the lead in the division, ahead of John Lawrence’s Sas Sea and Rick Early’s Sojourn 3, as they flew their spinnakers and ran across the bay to Callala Beach. When they turned and headed North, going back up the bay, Sojourn 3 was able to pass Sas Sea but couldn’t catch Tranquillity.

Tranquillity stayed ahead crossing the finish line 1st in Division 1 in 2 hours 32 minutes, 8 minutes ahead of Sojourn 3. Once handicaps were applied Alan Leach (Tranquillity)held onto 1st place, but 2nd place went to Steve Simpson (After Midnight) and John Lawrence (Sas Sea) came 3rd.  

In Division 2 Steve Lee in Y-knot got away at the start leading the field into the wind; being chased by Pat Grogan in Sirocco and Peter Cowman’s entry Double Time. Y-knot beat the others to the 1st mark then pulled away in the light conditions as they raced down Jervis Bay into the wind. 

The winds shifted to the East as the yachts turned near Long Beach and ran West across Jervis Bay. Y-knot and Sirocco both hoisted their spinnakers, Double Time kept in touch with the leaders even though they didn’t fly a spinnaker. 

When fleet rounded the mark near Callala Beach the winds had shifted to the NE and strengthened to over 15 knots. Sailing into the wind Sirocco was able to make up ground on Y-knot and Double Time began catching both vessels.

Y-knot crossed the finish line 1st in 2 hours 33 minutes with Sirocco just over 12 minutes behind and Double Time another 2 minutes further back. When handicaps were applied Peter Cowman (Double Time) took 1st place with Denis Meredith (Wotalife)2nd and Pat Grogan (Sirocco) 3rd

A BBQ and presentation of Mountain Ridge wine to the winners followed the race. Then guests from Volunteer Marine Rescue and Roads and Maritime Services gave a valuable information session on boating safety. 

Glen Pead (Media Officer)