It was the first pursuit race of the combined FSC/RCYC autumn pursuit series and the weather was awful. It had rained all day long and the bank of mist at the end of the docks completely hid any view of St Mawes and it was cold. To avoid the weather the recording and timing of the starts was done from inside the clubhouse.
Wild Child lead the way at 17:51 reaching down the harbour followed by Amneris at 17:54 and then Deep Purple and Moonlighter made up the first group and as they disappeared into the mist one or two spinnakers were hoisted. When the two big B class working boats appeared the wind came more from the west and so their start was an easier and faster reach and this process continued through the evening until Minx started under spinnaker. The chosen course sent them out towards St Mawes, a beat back to Trefusis followed by a spinnaker run east and finally a long beat back up the harbour.
To our surprise at about 18:30 the mist lifted and we could see the fleet racing in the distance. A group came up the last leg with places changing all the time as they beat in the ever narrowing channel but at the finish the two working boats Moon and Grace were first and second. Another close group followed with poor Gunslinger a long way behind. In such a mixed fleet different competitors saw the race from entirely different points of view. Abbi who pilots the FSC launch was delighted with the performance of her Flying Fifteen Midnight Cocktail, the smallest boat racing, because it planed wonderfully well off the wind overtaking larger displacement boats. On board Moonlighter they were so pressed for time that they were unable to set out the spinnaker sheets. Scorpion was going well until they broached when hit by an unexpected strong gust. Reefs were put in and shaken out as the wind varied but everyone thought the course length was well judged.
After the race some of the skippers of the larger boats were not happy with their starting times and they hoped that they would be changed for the next three races. Everyone enjoyed the sport and the excellent suppers warmed even the coldest extremities, I thoroughly recommend the baked gammon.
1st. Moon. 2nd.Grace. 3rd.Wild Child. 4th. Daring. 5th. Moonlighter. 6th. Amneris. 7th. Windscreen Viper. 8th. Scorpion. 9th. Deep Purple. 10th. Tresillian. 11th. Minx. 12th. Midnight Cocktail. 13th Jitterbug. 14th Gunslinger.