Before the race, in the clubhouse, John Hick the OOD noted that the force two breeze was north westerly but he knew, from experience, that with the wind in this direction Trefusis, as windward mark, causes problems. After the wind comes down the steep hillside on hitting the water the gusts spread in all directions making it a lottery for the approaching helmsmen. When the committee boat arrived in the Roads he found that the wind there was more northerly so the anchor was dropped near the east shore just north of St Mawes castle to give a good beat to the Vilt or North Bank where the wind is unimpeded.
In spite of his best intentions the light winds were tricky because there were holes where nothing happened as I found out on board Jet which needs more power than we had for the third race in the Hine Downing series.
In U class Deep Purple kept over to the St Mawes shore for the first beat but others including Trifle, Hecate and Amneris went over in the opposite direction towards the Trefusis shore. After passing the windward mark Ron Jones the skipper had the spinnaker put up for the run south and lead all the way to the finish where he won by more than four minutes on corrected time. In one fitful run the spinnaker of Moonlighter just avoided being caught by the guard rail on the anchored bunkering tanker as they went closer than intended. Hecate was first to the windward mark but in the difficult to read breeze she fell back to next to last as others with more luck overtook.
On board Jalabeano, although late at the start they enjoyed the good course with two spinnaker runs. According to the crew the flukey wind meant that if a boat was first at one mark it did not mean that they would be still in the lead by the next one.
In G class the small fleet was well spread out, the high topsails on some boats gained power from the breeze well above the surface of the water while there was precious little lower down which was my reason for retiring early.
In Q class at the end of a run Per Elisa and a couple of others, with their poles touching the forestay flew their spinnakers going to windward for some time before dropping and hoisting their genoas.
In B class, once moving, the working boats with their huge sail area sailed well with Victory crossing the line first by over a minute followed by Rita and Grace only four seconds apart. I do not know if the win is a tribute to the youth of the boat or the skill of the helmsman! They enjoyed close combat all the way round.