Winter Race Series 3
Published 16:07 on 21 Nov 2017
Salcombe Yacht Club Winter Series Race 3
A fresh westerly breeze with a touch of autumnal chill and the occasional patch of sunshine combined to create pleasant sailing conditions on Saturday afternoon. A spring tide low water shortly before the start lead the Race Officer to keep the fleets in the main part of the Estuary, setting a beat to Blackstone and a run down to Saltstone, followed by a Blackstone/Crossways lap and then a Mill Bay/Crossways lap.
The Solos were first away, with the fleet splitting evenly between the Portlemouth and Salcombe shores to short tack against the tide. It soon became apparent that the Salcombe side was favoured and most of the Portlemouth lot crossed over to limit their losses. Up ahead, David Greening, Jayne Morris and Ed Stephens made the early running. With the breeze well in the west there was a big starboard lift on the approach to Blackstone and Jayne Morris was best positioned to make the most of it, rounding first to enthusiastic cheers from the rest of the fleet. Greening rounded second followed by Stephens and Simon Dobson. On the run to Saltstone, Dobson did a better job of staying in the gusts and came through to take a narrow lead from Stephens. By the time the leaders returned to the main Estuary Dobson had a comfortable lead but after close tacking up through Ditch End, he chose to cross to the Salcombe shore. This proved to be a costly mistake as Stephens, crossing later, sailed into the lead. Further back Peter Sturgess did not cross at all and emerged at Blackstone to round in third place. Stephens sailed on to a maiden victory in his new boat, followed by Dobson and, in a tight finish, Greening pipped Sturgess for third.
The Handicap Fleet start was well attended and diverse, the growing Phantom contingent well represented along with several Lasers, the 505 of multiple world champion Peter Colclough, a couple of Merlin Rockets, a Yawl and a Firefly. At their start most boats stuck to the Salcombe shore for the beat to Blackstone, the 505 rounding first chased by the Phantoms of Paul Ellis and Ian Stewart who were to enjoy a close race throughout. Behind them, however, it was the Yawl and the Firefly that were making the running on corrected time. In the end the Yawl of Dan Bridger and Stephen Galvin edged the Firefly of Peter Cook and Janet Exelby by a mere 10 seconds with Ellis in third.
1st Ed Stephens
2nd Simon Dobson
3rd David Greening
1st Yawl Dan Bridger and Stephen Galvin
2nd Firefly Peter Cook and Janet Exelby
3rd Phantom Paul Ellis
Last updated 09:20 on 4 May 2018