What a great day (4 August) we had to kick-off the WS Racing Summer Series at the Chipstead Sailing Club. The sun was out, the wind was blowing and we had a great turn out, especially considering a number of our regulars are away on holiday or racing elsewhere (Good luck Peter Gregory who is competing on 6 and 7 August in the RYA’s multiclass regatta weekend at Rutland Sailing Club, where they are hosting the Hansa Grand Prix Series 2016 and Hansa (European) Nord CUP Series 2016 !!). Fortunately the Pirate lugger sailing around the lake during the time of the Race did not try to board any of the Racers’ dinghies but rather gave its passengers a close-up view of the exciting racing action. There was a good 12 knot WSW wind blowing, backing to the West, and with gusts up to 20 knots which at times came from the South through the trees at the windward Mark A.
Ann Frewer set off on her own in a Hansa 2.3 dinghy with a five-minute advantage over the two double-handed 303s, which had a one minute advantage over the two single-handed 303s, which had a two-minute advantage over the sole Liberty, being sailed by a recent newcomer to the racing series, Bill Garry, and eight minutes later the 2.4s and the Martin started. The race was the usual pursuit format and this week lasted 40 minutes. The schematic below shows how the race unfolded. A standout performance was that of Mark Cayzer, sailing in a 303 with his crew James (pictured), who overhauled Ann Frewer during the second lap and then managed to stay at the head of the fleet despite the presence of the faster (and chasing) 2.4s and Martin. However, Mark was still 150 m in front when the race finish-whistle sounded, ahead of Mike Blatchford and David Mason, who had been playing cat and mouse with each other throughout the race and as they got ahead of the tailenders in Lap 2 and then started to sail through the rest of the fleet. Another battle on the water was between Bob and Steve, with Steve holding the advantage he gained from the start line through until the third Lap when Bob had a storming beat up to the windward mark, overtaking both Ann and Steve, and found himself in second place at the end of Lap 4. Although Bob managed to maintain his advantage over Steve until the finish of the race, they were both overhauled by the 2.4s during the fourth lap. Bill Garry sailed an excellent race and would have finished higher up the order if he had not crossed the start line five-minutes after the Liberty Start Whistle had sounded!! Ann, Andy and Fay, with her crew Di, were all on their fourth lap at the end of the race. All in all, it was an excellent race in good conditions. Well done to all the Racers!!
Final Result: 1. Mark Cayzer/James; 2. Mike Blatchford; 3. David Mason; 4. Bob Fisher; 5. Steve Farmer; 6. Bill Garry; 7. Ann Frewer; 8. Andy Wallace; 9. Fay Watson/Diana