The vanishing fleet - high wind vs great cakes?
Saturday’s statistics indicate a strong correlation between increasing wind speed and decreasing fleet size. Or maybe the cakes were a bit special. 17 GPs start the first race 12 finished. 5 start the second 3 finished.
Course was 2-1, 8-7 then 4-3 with a start line down by 5,6 with a pin end bias. Those starting in the middle tacked early onto the preferred port tack and were in better wind than boats that started at the pin. With Jim picking the shifts and Jamie keeping the boat flat GP 13889 was first to the windward mark, a position they maintained until the finish despite some technical problems with a Genoa sheet on the last lap.
Our safety boats were kept busy, with some boats succumbing to what my crew called the ‘grenade in the boat capsize’. The novice crew is often guilty! Late release of the genoa sheet when tacking sets the detonator as the backing sail pulls the sheet back into the cleat. In 10 to 15 knots the helm may have time to politely point out the problem. Above this wind speed communication may be more basic and a swim is the likely result.
Three boats persevered to finish the second race, Maciek with Jim Diamond crewing was the first B helm to finish. They crossed the line with a boat full of water after surviving a grenade moment on the final tack.
Not forgetting Lasers
John Curran from Wembley won both Laser races, the first after sailing through the fleet after a late start. I shall try to take more notice of Lasers in future!
Bakeoff ratings for the cakes perhaps?
Race Series Results
Click to see results week by week and for the Autumn series to date:
Thanks to Michal for the photo.