With Dicks visit postponed until todays race, we all gathered in the Camber ‘as usual’ until we realised that the harbour was about to close due to the imminent arrival of the great aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth. Rosina, with Z67 in tow, made it across to ballast which allowed all the Victories to rig and wait for the grey elephant to park in her berth.
Bill and John from Z68 were our OODs in Rosina, once we made it out onto the swashway they made a quick getaway to KB to set the line. The course was-
Darling Associates P Vail Williams P KB S Finish at Suffolk Sails/Line
The wind slowly died and the tide confused the sea but the race got off to a clean start for Z74 with Dick Batt onboard. The fleet split with some going into the wall for clear air and the others heading southwest for the strong west going tide, carrying them up to the windward mark. The first leg was full of close crossings and ducks, places were changing all the way up to DA. Z54, Z57 and Z70 went tight into Gilkicker corner but stalled in a tidal eddy. Z74 and Z80 made it round DA followed by Z71. Once again the ten boat fleet split- Z80, Z78 led the fleet right, Z71, Z75 and Z70 went left into the beach. The tide propelled Z71 and Z75 around Gilkicker beach and into the lead, the tide (and good kite trimming) helped keep Z71 in the lead on the long downwind to VW. Unfortunately the boats that went right got stuck out by the tide. On our way down to VW, Z71 spotted Rosina gunning it from KB to VW- we were expecting a shortened course due to the dying wind. Turns out that Rosina just wanted to watch us round VW!
With a short(ish) fetch from VW to KB, Z71 held out in front but mid fleet there were places changing, it was all down to the final drag.
Rounding KB and hoisting the kite, Z71 decelerated and was nearly caught by Z75 and then Z57 when they rounded. Z75 and Z71 now had a game of cat and mouse to the finish- cover and go into the wall, or stay out with more breeze? Z71 kept their lead after gybing near the wall and pulling away from Z75. The final results- 1st Z71
10th Z53 Thank you to Bill and John for running the race. Thank you to Dick for the winners bottle. Congratulations to Z71- Gareth, Hiram and Zoe - i’m sure Z71 won the same race last year, definitely deja vu !! See you tonight, Thursday 11th July, for a special one off race. Don’t forget to book your Cowes week social tickets through Matt and your new class tie!