Yuk! 'tisn't very good weather for July said my foredeck man Matt. That's 'cos it's June we retorted! Oh that's OK then.
Forty-three boats braved the dull damp windless evening for the 4th Hine Downing series One race on Tuesday 27th June. The Race Officer Paul Collins placed the committee boat Lizzie in the vicinity of the Vilt Buoy and we all struggled in the rain and no wind to get there. AP was hoisted as the courses set were too ambitious in length and even the new set appeared to us mere mortals rather long.
Peter Stephens in Ultra Violet sort of made the committee boat end of the line battling against the big spring flood tide and sod all wind. He had the inevitable sail over as the sole M class entrant.
Ten yachts in Q class then went off with Per Elisa, Robbie Tregear, going like a rocket. Scorpion, Geoff Davies took the same approach as us on Trifle and stayed at the pin end where there was a Zephyr plus 0.0001 kt, and the chance of drifting down tide to the line.
U class then took off and we started on starboard in wind and lee bowing the tide. It all looked to be working well. A gaggle of yachts, Q class, U class and Sunbeams caught a fresh breeze out of the grey northern sky and went in under Trefusis. Aha! The Trefusis lull? We were out in breeze and favourable tide along with Deep Purple and Quicksilver. Wrong! The Trefusis mob got a fresher breeze and massive lift to the mark where we rounded next to last and played spinnaker catch-up toward the Governor.
Seven Sunbeams started and as stated soon caught up and overtook the preceding fleets. Five G class gaffers started and their bright topsails contrasted with the leaden gloom of more approaching rain and mizzle.
Four W class started with Robin Roebuck joining in with his Aphrodite 101 Ilsa.
Eight B class-working boats made the line and sailed well in the light airs.
The rain returned and took the wind away again so the race officer shortened course finishing all but W class at the Vilt.
Per Elisa won Q class by 8 minutes. Gap Year took line honours and won U class. K-K-K-Katy won G class with Charm retiring. Len Cheshire in Sweet Friday won W class and in the Sunbeams Ivy, Nigel Glanville led Pixy, Lyulph Hesling and Wendy, Geoff Martin to the finish line. Victory, David Carne some 12 seconds behind Rita, Jon Peters won by 31 seconds on corrected handicap time in B class.
Thanks to Inez and Jeannette in the ops room struggling with computer, printer and all things technical, Lynn our new barmaid helped by Jenny, and Len Cheshire for completing the graveyard shift on the launch.
Meteorology stats show the wettest two months of the year to be July and August – warm wet wind from the southwest over a long sea track! Looks like it's here already, my suntan has taken a beating.