Wind plays tricks as Oulton Week gets under way

The weather forecast for the first day of Oulton Week was almost perfect and excellent fleets were attracted on to the water.

The one element the forecast got wrong was the wind, both strength and direction, and in all fairness it was unpredictable on the day for longer than 15 minutes or so.

And the keel boats were the ones that suffered as much as any. The first Mixed Keel race started in a modest easterly and three boats got away from the start and stayed there as the course was shortened. Chris Bunn in Yare and Bure Fox led through out followed by Christian Young and Richard Dell in BODs while Geoff Little in fourth was the leading Waveney.

By the start of the afternoon class races the wind was playing even bigger tricks. David Yapp was first away and by the second leg he had pulled out a useful lead but by the time he had reached what was meant to be the windward mark Colin Fuller was on his tail and Trevor Balls was doing turns following a slight collision. But by the time they got back to the finishing line on another shortened course, Yapp was still in the lead but Balls had pulled through to second and Fuller had disappeared completely.

It was certainly not the weather for Squibs. John Lockwood rounded the first mark with a small lead which was quickly eaten away by Lloyd Crisp, making a welcome reappearance on the Broad.

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The final Mixed One Designs was even worse as Chris Bunn led Sam Cole and George Gower into the first mark and although Bunn was still leading as they crept back up the Broad Geoff Litttle had moved into second place and then into the lead as the course was again shortened.

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