Who would believe a sunny bank holiday weekend?
When the morning mist shifted on Saturday it revealed a warm sunny day. The wind was forecast to be Southerly but it swung between northwest and southwest being light and with many holes. The Handicap Fleet had a general recall and boats from all fleets, including the visiting Catapults, were switching positions dependent on the number of holes they encountered.
The OD decided to move the Bates after race 1 to try to find more constant wind which caused a significant delay. At his restart Mik became confused by the many sound signals the Bates’ novice driver was issuing and went OCS and later, Mike & Eric found a further hole and came to a dead stop letting Val & Ken through albeit briefly.
On Sunday morning, as with Saturday, the wind struggled to settle from a given direction, and there were some calmer patches between the shifting winds. The sea breeze helped settle things down in the afternoon, and the stronger winds gave some good planing conditions. In addition to several premature starters, there were various capsizes throughout the afternoon; Paul Bowmer in a GP was washed out of his boat causing a Chinese gybe as he held on to the main, and an inevitable capsize followed. Ian/Lezli-Ann in a F15 got a gust of wind as they passed The Bates which they narrowly missed as they struggled to bear away. Another gust had two Catapults rapidly catching Simon/Jon in a F15 as they were about to round a leeward mark. One took water to round, but the other couldn’t fully bear away and finished up astride the F15! Simon ended up on the Catapult to enable a separation.
With three races, two of which were in the stronger winds, there were many sailors ready to top up their energy with the pie and pea supper before taking part in a race night.
A sunny bank holiday Monday delivered more of the same. A short wait in the morning allowed the wind to settle in from the north, only to swing to the west early in the race. As a result the beat became very one sided, and there were some wind shadows around mark 1. The initial light winds put off a few sailors who opted to enjoy the sunshine on shore. The wind then filled in from the south west with some gusto, and it remained for the rest of the day as it was reinforced by the sea breeze. Simon/Jon avoided further incidents with the Catapult with which they had a close encounter on Sunday, to break back through to the lead, win the race, and secure the Jak Pot trophy, leaving Mike/Kayla and Ian/Lezli-Ann to battle it our for 2nd overall in the final race.
Although the variable morning race conditions suited Mike/Eric in their GP, enabling them to take first place, Dave/Lynn had the series in the bag with their 2nd place, but still raced the final race to win the Lyne Tankard with a clean sweep of four 1sts.
Ian Hall in his Solo took advantage of the morning conditions to take a win on handicap, but it was Scumper in his RS100 that took the May Holiday trophy with 9 points ahead of Steve/Ruth in their Merlin.
Bean and Oliver won the MT fleet trophy with four wins, while Jonathan/Henry were 2nd overall.
After 6 mixed and challenging races, the visiting Catapult fleet had a new winner in Dave Terry, with Gareth Ede 2nd overall.