Sail Chat: 29.04.2018

Full weekend of sailing at HSC on Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th April 2018.

Saturday was our annual ‘Round the Island Race and Supper’. Starting at 17:00 there was very deep cloud cover, drizzle, a very light northerly and some stream. It was not ideal! Whatever! The race team of Duncan and Kevin set the best course available to go round an island. With a very short fetch to ‘F’ upriver and then a drift assist reach down to ‘Three Tree Island’ to port and a ‘K’ mark just off the island to port. Perhaps the worst bit was the then beat back up river, especially through the Garrick narrows. Participants were Stuart Jenkins with Claude (Merlin), Phill with brand new crew and very athletic young Eva Cass who performed excellently and with great concentration, John Hollands in a Solo (What!), Sophie helming Jane (Enterprise), Ian and Suzie (Enterprise), David (Solo) Andrew with Ben (Merlin) and George and Mike (GP14). One lap took nearly an hour and the finish bell was music in the ear. Eva and Phill crossed the line first but the ultra fast Merlin of team Stu., won on handicap. A much better turn out than last year. Ear Ache factor for Race Officer (EAFFRO) 1.

Alison and Maddie organised a super supper with four or was it five different choices and the club was comfortably full.

Sunday still had the leaden skies but with it a biting north easterly which was pretty frisky at times. Truly a day for all the kit. Race Officers David and Graham gave the two morning takers, Simon/Claude (Merlin) and Phill with Ra (Enterprise), an interesting course which had a tricky beat from ‘H’ just off Garricks Ait to ‘H’ just off Bell Hill. The Ent., was lapped!

The afternoon saw similar courses but the Merlins were sent to ‘J’ and out of the way. We all struggled with the short beat to ‘H’ Middlesex but races should have a beat and a northerly for us is challenging in this context.

Out then were George with newcomer Andrew and Kevin with Maddie in GP’s. The Merlins of Hywell/Lucy and Stuart/Nicki were fighting for the series and initially closely matched until poor Lucy exited the boat for an unwanted dip. Sailing with Hywell can be an exciting and chilly experience. George won the GP first series as did Stuart and Claude the Merlins.

Bim Bom Ben had another win in the Handicap series in spite of going aground. His call for water to tack receiving that well known RYA phrase ‘I have a good line’ in a negative response to the request. David however won the first series AM and PM.

Not to be outmatched in the Enterprise fleet Jane flipped and dipped before the start, ably scooped by Sophie and the Aviator flew away from Amelia for a ducking. Ian sailed a cracking race assisted by Nigel, whose, now much reduced size, greatly assisted in them staying flat. Sarah and Ellen sailed upright as did Phill and Ra but with a certain amount of spilling. Ian won the first series.


Quiet certainty from the Timekeepers Tim and Rosemary and licky calorific tea from Suzie and Angela. EAFFRO 6.

Next Saturday is the Mid Thames Trophy start 11:00.


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