Thirty-one yachts turned out for the Seven Stars Saturday series and the Percy Dalton Cup for B & C classes. The wind was Northerly and Ian Jakeways (Birthday Boy) the race officer set up group 1 for all classes. The wind was stronger than forecast and the tide was very low so that we had to use the commercial quay to embark on the launch.
The start line was busy especially with the reduced width of water to sail in. Three yachts took off in Q class with Minx showing the way albeit with a twist in the kite. Seven U class then set off mostly on port pole kite. Bob Chapple on Wilkie single-handed flying a spinnaker from the start. Ron Jones, on Deep Purple also single-handed started a bit later than the rest of us but had a good thrash around the course. Aurora, Mandy Owens took an early lead eagerly pursued by Trifle, Chris Jelliss and Kaimana, Nigel & Jess Rowe. Sweet Friday, Len Cheshire and Amneris, Mike Robson then went off under white sail in W class. G class fielded 3 boats and the three boats in C class opted to start off the club line.
Thirteen, unlucky for some, B class working boats were launched into the Roads from the Frigate buoy start line.
In U class we sailed under spinnakers to Black Rock buoy and rounded it to port. We just managed to pip Kaimana round the buoy and went off on port tack up to North Bank. With the strong flood tide it made sense to stay in the tide but with the wind over the tide a nasty short chop developed. Aurora who had been forced high on the kite run now powered through us using her longer waterline length to round the North Bank ahead of us. A reachy, runny, beaty course then took us under the Trefusis shore eventually getting back to a proper beat up the harbour and round the turning mark to go round again.
Minx, Charles Choak having scrubbed and antifouled on Thursday had a good lead on Atalanta and beat her by 4 mins 36 seconds over the water. The dreaded handicap saw Atalanta win by just over 2 mins on corrected time. Aurora beat Trifle by 3 mins over the water but on handicap made that 7 mins on corrected time!
Sweet Friday took Amneris by 30 seconds and Katy, Sue Grigg beat Miss Agnes, Mike Rangecroft in G class. Leila, Adam Bird beat Zilpha in C class.
Moon, Patrick Selman was a good 36 seconds ahead of Lola in the B class Working Boats and indeed won the race on handicap! Alas subject to protest by Victory, David Carne as the two vessels collided with each other and then a moored boat!! Sad to see after a great day's sailing but no one was injured.
Thanks to the Birthday Boy, and Jennie Jakeways for the flags, Sue Clark for the radio, Jeanette Hill for the results and Len Trenoweth for starting the working boats. Giles the launch driver for helping out with the working boat collision and getting us safely ashore.
The prizegiving for this series will be held at the Seven Stars in Flushing on Saturday 24th at 7 for 7:30. If you would like to join in a meal the Seven Stars, please contact Mandy Owens by Thursday.