Salcombe Yacht Club Spring Series Race 3 2018
Published 14:44 on 3 Apr 2018
A Force 5 North Westerly over a Spring Flood tide was bound to make for interesting racing for the third race of the Salcombe Yacht Club Spring Series, offering flat out racing in the more open upper reaches of the harbour, and nail biting no wind zones in the main anchorage, where the Devon hills provide protection.
Race Officer Peter Cook set a course that maximised on the flat out racing, while providing some of the competitors with an agonising finish; two loops of the Bag, followed by a trip to Blackstone before returning to the finishing line.
A healthy turnout of fourteen Solos came to the start, requiring judgement of where the strongest breeze would be to get to the Crossways mark in good order. Nick Jackson judged this to perfection and fetched into the mark, while the rest of the fleet jostled for inside berth, with David Greening and Graham Cranford-Smith popping out of the pack.
A fluffed tack by Jackson resulting in a muddy capsize saw Greening and Cranford-Smith through, a formation which was maintained until the no wind zone in the harbour, when Ed Stephens and Julian Meek closed in on a fresh North Easterly breeze, which by the finish, saw Stephens take the bell from Cranford-Smith, Meek in third and Greening displaced to fourth.
There were similar tales from the eight strong Handicap fleet, with the faster boats, notably the Phantom of Alistair Morley and the Merlin Rocket of AJ and Laura Squire making the early running in the higher winds to be found in the upper harbour, watching their elapsed time evaporate as they tried to stem the tide from Biddle Head to Blackstone, watching helplessly as the Yawl of Stephen Galvin and Andrew Wood came steaming through on the fresh breeze to take the win on corrected time from the Yawl of Bridger and Gilson.
1st Solo 5769 Ed Stephens
2nd Solo 5755 Graham Cranford-Smith
3rd Solo 5757 Julian Meek
1st Yawl 99 Stephen Galvin and Andrew Wood
2nd Yawl 170 Dan Bridger and Geoff Gilson
3rd Phantom 1459 Alistair Morley
Written by David Greening
Photos by Peter Cook and Margaret Mackley
Last updated 18:33 on 9 July 2018