Race Report – The New Autumn Series Starts….!!

The summer series finish was a real hum dinger, with just two points separating the top three teams!  Nail bitingly close, it went on countback to Andy Clark and Agness Lugovska in 3911….  leaving Howard and Richard, winners of the 2012 Winter and Spring Series, lolling in 2nd! Third, just one point behind were our Garda Heroes John Hanson and Helen Selden.

The 2012 Autumn Series kicked off today with thick fog…. but breeze!!  We had nine boats on the slip – good showing!  The PRO decided to postpone an hour for the fog to clear – which it duly did, but taking much of the breeze with it!! We filled the time comparing spinnakers and Loos Gauges in the car park – very educational it was !!

Well, off we went into the mist at around 1130 – to be fair the breeze did become pretty challenging.  These conditions are always difficult. Quite probably five or six boats probably held the lead at different times.  The fleet squeezed out of the narrow gate along with all other club competitors, and made their way up top the conservatively distant windward mark over toward Honda.  Heaven knows how times the lead changed up that beat.  Despite Mervyn’s derogatory remarks at the start about carbon slowing the boat up it was in fact Howard and Richard in 4011 who squeezed the mark first.  You could hardly say we shot helter skelter down the reach. Spinnakers went up though and were carried most of the leg – which became suspiciously like a beat at the end. Down the second reach it all went ghastly and the Hansons, Trevor and Mike, Mervyn and Dave all got past the hapless Howard and Richard. All pretty ugly by the bottom mark, it was !!!  Then up the beat we went – Howard and Richard just squeezed Trevor and Howard at the bottom mark, then popped Mervyn and Dave up the beat in hot pursuit of The Hansons over toward the Oppie Training fleet – which was summarily dealt with – Howard/Richard looking pretty again. Then it all went pear shaped once more at the top mark – John Hanson cruelly rounded first (with commentary!!!), and right there were Emma/Russell causing “trouble” too!! Down the run, probably all three held the lead at some point – but squeezing around the last mark in the dash for the finish it was Howard/Richard – with Emma/Russell getting the second spot on the podium just ahead of The Hansons.

Thanks to the Race Team for shortening….!!!    Howard and Richard were delighted that you all let them win their first Fleet Race in the new boat – thank you!!  Please be as kind in the races to come!!

Don’t forget the Datchet Autumn Open Meeting is next weekend!  Check Club website for details….!!