Winter Series Race 2
Published 13:51 on 10 Nov 2017
Salcombe Yacht Club, Winter Series Race 2
There was an element of confusion both off and on the water for Saturday sailors at Salcombe on Nov 4th. Off the water, web site entries opened for the highly popular July 2018 National Merlin Rocket sailing dinghy Week and the maximum quota of 120 boats was reached within an hour, however complications with the operation of the new site resulted in a very stressful period for both competitors and SYC organisers. Meanwhile the period of tricky North Westerly winds continued from the previous week making starting and finishing off the club line something of a nightmare. The good news here however was that OOD Nigel Blazeby set a course with a loop in the Widegates part of the estuary giving fantastic windward leeward sailing in a feisty force three breeze for this part of the estuary.
The separate start of eleven Solos saw Simon Dobson take an early control of the fleet and left the remaining helms fighting for the minor positions. There was a good beat all the way through the Bag and then through Widegates up to the Gerston mark where Simon Dobson extended his advantage at the front from Chris Cleaves, who as usual skilfully worked his way through the fleet. The return into the main estuary brought wind chaos and a massive shuffling of the pack with at one point the whole Solo fleet concentrated into the region near the Portlemouth Ferry Steps. A further leg to Blackstone mark provided additional casino sailing and finally Roger Guess emerged as a very worthy first time victor from Simon Dodson and Chris Cleaves.
The strong sixteen boat Handicap fleet had good racing with a number of notable battles developing within and between different classes. The junior Laser 4.7 fleet in particular is building up impressively with close and high quality sailing and the three Phantom dinghies on the water indicate the emergence of yet another single handed class in the club. Peter Cook and Janet Exelby in their wooden Firefly made their usual excellent start to the race and sailed well to secure second place overall on handicap, whilst Paul Ellis in his new Phantom took first place overall. The Salcombe Yawl of Dan Bridger and Stephen Galvin came third overall partly as a consequence of the Andrew Wood and Tim Petit Yawl being caught in a wind hole off Millbay beach which delayed them near the end of the race for a tortuous ten minute period. In spite of the wind chaos in the main estuary, the racing was held in glorious Autumn sunshine in a beautiful estuary that provided both challenging and wonderful areas of sailing.
1st 5257 Roger Guess
2nd 5676 Simon Dobson
3rd 5573 Chris Cleeves
1st Phantom 1413 Paul Ellis
2nd Firefly 3127 Peter Cook & Janet Exelby
3rd Yawl 159 Dan Bridger & Stephen Galvin
Last updated 10:07 on 10 February 2018