by David Hannant
Thursday, February 7, 2013
Twenty one boats turned out in a fresh westerly wind which gave some good sailing on an interesting course.
Ten of these started in the Fast Handicap race and the RS100 and two RS400s were soon out in front but with the wind blowing straight down the Broad they had to zigzag down the runs, which actually meant that the conventional classes were catching them up.
So although Richard Fryer again took the first bell, Ben Falat in his Phantom was second and this was good enough to move him up to first on handicap.
Back in sixth place was David Frary, sailing his Finn, and he moved up to second on handicap, only missing first place by seven seconds with Nick Favell in another Phantom 18 seconds behind in third place.
Owen Delany has always been one of the best starters in the Squib class and he again demonstrated that the best place to win a race is on the start line. He got the best of the start and held a useful lead at the first mark over David Gooch, which he quickly extended.
As the race progressed Gooch nibbled away at the lead and although he got closer he was never going to get past so Delany lead from start to finish. Behind them Sam Cole picked up a place on the second round to finish third.
Bethany Hood and Joe Drake were again out in the Slow Handicap race and their skills at sailing in windy conditions are steadily improving. Joe is sailing a Topper and Bethany a RS Tera which is theoretically slower but she finished first and did not need her handicap advantage to help her.
The wind had been steadily increasing in strength as the races progressed and while several helmsmen were debating whether to go out in the second races their minds were made up for them as the engine on the rescue RIB started playing up so with the wind gusting to over 30 knots and only one rescue boat available in the interests of safety the second races were all cancelled.