Those Racers who decided to come to Chipstead were – according to most weather forecasters – taking a risk of getting very wet and being blown around the lake by a quite strong and gusty wind. The early volunteers found themselves launching and rigging the fleet in light drizzle but fortunately that eased off and the task was completed in dry conditions. The wind was blowing from a WSW direction (that is from the Bricklayers Arms / Waterfall end of the lake) and, by its gusts, showing that it was probably going to blow as forecast!
The volunteers’ briefing heard that heavy rain and squally conditions were due to arrive sometime during the middle of the day. Exactly when was uncertain but it was decided to keep the Race Start Time at 1130 and hope that we could derig and get most of the fleet out of the water before the monsoon arrived!
T’was good to see Steve and Ann amongst a dozen stalwarts who had arrived to race. The Pontoon Manager and volunteers sorted out the crews for those who wanted them and suitable boats for the others – with Martin back in a Martin this week – and there was plenty of time for them to practice the course under a rather overcast sky with the same gusty winds.
The sun broke though the clouds at 1120 and the race started on time, in glorious conditions. And, if only he had been 2 seconds (or about 3 meters) further away from the Start Line, as he approached it, Martin Norman (aforesaid helm of Martin 126), would have made a storming start. However, despite announcements from the Race Hut over the Tannoy and shouts from the Pontoon Manager, Martin did not know he was required to go back and restart, until he had already sailed a 100 meters. Nevertheless, he made a swift turn about and restarted the race quickly and then had a battle on his hands making up distance he had lost to the leaders. The other fast starters can be seen in a short video clip (Thanks to Matt Bryant for technical help with loading the video. Ed) as the fleet tacked up to Mark B and then reached across to Mark A.
The rest of the course was: 3rd leg downwind to gybe around Mark D and sail further down wind to Mark J, before pulling in the sails to tack back upwind, across the Start/Finish line (Mark K to a flag in the middle of the lake), to Mark B.
There was good close racing throughout the fleet as the various classes got stretched out on the water.
The Race result is:
- David Mason – 2.4m – #108
- Mike Blatchford – Liberty – Sail #23
- Malcolm Hill and his crew Mike Mackenzie – Martin – #125
- Peter Wagner – 2.4m – #109
- Peter Gregory – 2.4m -#148
- Kelly Tripp and her crew Doug Haig – 303D – #10
- Martin Norman – Martin – #126
- Steve Farmer – 303S – #1
- Fay Watson and her crew Bruce Hebbert – 303D – #6
- John Beck and his crew Paul – 303D – #745
- Ann Frewer and her crew Don – 303D – #8
- Trevor Nunn – Liberty – #21
Well done to all the racers. The results have been added to the summary sheet on the website.