Wind and rain greets hardy Snowflake open racers
It was a day of contrasting weather for Snowflake SC’s dinghy and Yeoman open on Hoveton Little Broad.
The course was set up in sunshine and a nice breeze, but as soon as the four Yeoman and six dinghies arrived the wind got up and it rained hard. As a consequence, the first start had to be postponed so the course could be altered, giving the competitors a course that gave them two chances to use spinnakers per lap.
Both the Yeoman races before lunch were close, with a mixture of sunshine, showers and sudden gusts to catch people unawares.
In the second race, the gusts were so strong at one point that two Yeomans were caught out when using their spinnakers, so much so that they both healed right over with lots of exclamations. Kittiwake (Q Stewart and Ian Hanson) led throughout the first race, but in the second race they had to come from the back to win.
Only one Yeoman braved the weather after lunch (Avocet, the Edwards family). Overall Kittiwake was first and Avocet second.
In the end five dinghies competed for their trophies, a Splash, Fireball, 420 and two Lasers.
There were several capsizes as the dinghies prepared to start their first race – capsizes continued through all three races with the Fireball, Phoenix (Toby Pearce and Edward Wildman) having the most. The Fireball led the racing in the morning, but lost out on handicap to the Splash (Ellie Edwards).
In the afternoon only three dinghies raced – the Fireball, Splash and a Laser (Smoke on the Water) sailed by Snowflake Commodore Roger Hannant.
After a dramatic capsize the Splash had to retire from the third race, although it made no difference to the overall results, Ellie Edwards sailing her Splash was first with Toby Pearce and Edward Wildman (Phoenix) second.
After strong winds forced the abandonment of racing at Oulton Broad on Saturday, for the second week running, members of Waveney & Oulton Broad Yacht Club were keen to get afloat on Sunday for their End of Season Regatta.
Some found this difficult as a very high tide meant some moorings were well underwater. Nevertheless, 24 boats competed in a blustery north wind that gave several squalls.
In the Laser fleet, Jonathan Jones won the first race, but then had to retire with a broken kicking strap. Simon Beckett took the second race and eventually was the overall winner with Jordan Levett second and James Nourse third.
Meanwhile, most Slow Handicap dinghies were finding the conditions challenging, but Thomas Betts was coping well in his Topper and won two races to take the trophy.
Felix Cripps, also in a Topper, was second and Steve Harvey third in his Comet. There were only three boats in the Fast Handicap, which was won by Veronica Falat in her Streaker. Alan Cone was second in his Solo.
The keelboat racing was particularly action-packed in the strong gusts and most boats sailed onlt two of the three races. Richard Sullivan and Sue Harper were the winners in the Squibs while Sam Cole, crewed by his son Henry and Steve Evans, won both Broads One Design races, with Richard Dell, daughter Flora and Matthew Thwaites second overall.
Only two Waveneys ventured out – Iris with reefs and Brandy Bottle without. Simon and Caroline Marfleet in Iris won the first race but Brandy Bottle (Chris Schonhut, Steve Shipley and Jake Balls) won the other two.
Next weekend the club will host a Topper and Optimist open meeting on Saturday and the Winter Season starts on Sunday.