Sunday, August 31, 2008

Fluke? or a sign of the future?

This sunday we trailed the boat to Alton Water in Suffolk, not far from Ipswich, to compete in thier open meeting.
Ten boats turned up and in very variable, testing and frustrating conditions we completed 3 races with the best 2 results to count.
We also picked up our new sails, well not new but a very nice set of second hand North sails, only 2 years old. I wasn't expecting to be able to use them but the chap who sold them to me had changed the sail numbers for me! What a star! Cheers Brian!
So the picture is of Wild Goose sporting her 'new' sails, on the final part of the second race, in drifting conditions!
We did well, much better than expected. In the first race we were 1st the 1st mark and very nearly won but finished 2nd. The wind boxed the compass and it was most disconcerting to have a massive lead wiped out as the wind left me wallowing whilst everyone caught up!
The second race started well with a light breeze, we choose the right because of the extra wind pressure and found ourselves right on the transom of the leader at the 1st mark. Then the wind just vanished with the exception of small puffs every now and then. We gained the lead by the second mark and pulled away and nearly won the race but on the last leg one boat in particular caught up and with a lucky puff scooted past us to take the bullet by 10ft and we got our second 2nd.
At this point the race officer was considering abandoning the last race and if he had we would have Won! But (and I'm quite pleased really!) the wind piped up again so we sailed the final race.
Again we were first at the first mark and held the lead to the second mark where the boat behind us had an overlap and took us on the gybe. We stayed with him for the next two laps but he gradually pulled away and we were left fighting for second place, a fight we won and so we got our 3rd 2nd.
The result was 3 boats tied on 4 points but because I had not won a race I finished 3rd overall, even though I was the most consistantly high finisher in all the races. Under the old rules the discard would have been taken into account to settle the matter and I would have won but alas the rules are what they are.
But hey! We finished 3rd! Cool eh?

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