Under a clear blue sky a brisk northerly force three funnelled down Carrick Roads to the committee boat anchored about a third of the way between West Narrows and the Governor. The pin end was laid to give a good beat to North Bank. Eleven boats in Q class jostled south of the line just before the start when Excelle and Hawk, two of the bigger boats, came very close. Some quick helming and crew work avoided the impending collision however the innocent Macavity in missing them both was put into a poor position for the start. When the signal sounded Per Elisa and Encore got away well in clean air and undisturbed water and with good boat speed they immediately established a lead which they held all through a long course to the finish. The close quarter manoeuvres of the rest of the fleet slowed them as the leaders pulled away. On the reach back down to Trefusis the chasing group tried but could not catch the leading pair who both gybed at the mark and sailed south east towards the Governor where they squared off for the long run south to the Old Wall.
Five minutes later U class followed the same course lead by Wilkie, Hecate and Trifle. After the beat the class went closer to the Trefusis shore then Q class and on gybing Hecate dropped their kite and Trifle took second place for the reach to the docks. A bright orange tug left the docks and gently motored south with the fleet. After some crew work on board Hecate the spinnaker was re-launched and slowly they overtook Trifle to regain second place.
From Pendennis Point a different picture emerged because as the leaders of Q class spinnakered south a large tug appeared towing an enormous rig decorated with eight black columns. It came across the bay from the south west and it slowed as it neared the point waiting for the arrival of the docks' tug and for the harbour masterís launch to organise the entry to the Roads.
Well behind the leading group U class appeared following them slowly as the power in the northerly eased as it spread out into the bay. At 7:03pm Per Elisa dropped her spinnaker at the distant buoy over a mile south and started the beat back to the finish followed by Encore and the others eighteen, in all. U class were running almost in line under spinnaker straight to the buoy while Q were spread out both east and west on the beat. I can only salute the commercial sailors for their courtesy and consideration in waiting for us to get out of their way. By 7:30pm the convoy slowly approached the point as most of the racers stayed well over on the eastern side.
On the way out seals were seen on Black Rock and there were several sightings of the huge, dustbin sized, barrel jelly fish drifting with the stream. I have been told that their sting is not too severe but I shall still stay well away from them.
The breeze held up and the fleets reached up the harbour and beat to the finish making a fine, if cool, spectacle for us in the clubhouse.