September 27, 2019
There was a scrum at the committee boat end, with the whole fleet soon tacking right. Fastest up the beat was Stewart Hawthorn, who was over the moon to round the windward mark first. He was followed by Clive Eplett and Brett Aarons who enjoyed an epic battle throughout the race. They hauled in Hawthorn and Eplett kindly waved Aarons through to take the bullet with Eplett second. They were followed by David Smart, Richardson (Junior) and Ian Gregory who was starting to show his light wind wizardry.
Ian Gregory gave a lesson in light wind sailing, pointing higher and going faster, leaving everyone scratching their heads how such speed is possible in bugger all wind. Richardson junior also showed his light wind skill coming second, followed by a delighted Giles Peckham with Aarons an uncharacteristic fourth and Huw Powell fifth defying his tag as being a heavy wind specialist who doesn’t do the light stuff.
The most spectacular finish went to Francis Bucknall, who was approaching the finish line under spinnaker with nobody close. He then went into a sudden gybe just before the finish line, sailing down the line to the committee boat and successfully wrapping himself round the committee boat’s anchor chain. The cause was a jellyfish the size of a small car (allegedly!)
Another committee boat biased line led to Richardson trying to reverse away from the start, but failing and having to take an early shower courtesy of an OCS. The fleet went right, all except for one boat who went left in search of pressure. There was an audible groan from the fleet when they discovered it was Smart who had pulled a blinder and had found that extra pressure. He was followed by the super-fast Gregory. Smart and Gregory swapped places over the next two laps, with Gregory finishing a boat length ahead of Smart, with Peckham enjoying a second podium finish with Aarons fourth and John Charles fifth.
Overall Aarons takes the overnight lead, with Powell dropping one place to second with Richardson and Smart equal third. All to play for over the weekend.