It’s taken me a little longer in therapy than I expected, but I’m out now & the doctors expect I’ll make a full recovery. All that is needed is a nice 18 knot NE’er at Teralba (should be have one before 2020 I hope). So what caused this condition? If you were at Hawkesbury regatta you’d know……
Once again the members at Hawkesbury made us feel very welcome. With nice hot sand & an even nicer NE’er building, a great afternoon sailing looked assured. With plenty of juniors to look after the course was set inside Junno Point. With 15 knots+ blowing at the start, this seemed no problem – until about 1 minute after the start. By that time the breeze backed up the course & left many boats wallowing on the usually favoured LHS of the course. A few saw this & headed right, against the tide, but into the breeze. One of those was Measurement Solutions who was amongst the leaders around the top mark. Most boats headed south down the run, with the wind & tide. It was a good two stringer, until about the start line, where the breeze ran out. From here the torture of the mind began…..
Put simply, the closer to the bottom mark the less the breeze. And the direction the breeze would come from was also a question. When combined, this resulted in many position changes, smiles, frowns and profanity. In one example of many Raptor were parked at the bottom mark that long that they were nearly lapped, but then hooked into the breeze & almost caught the leaders. Every boat copped this, but in the end Runaway picked a good final leg to get the major points from Firestorm & Ol’Yella. Add 123 were looking set for 4th until Wobbygong brought the breeze to the final mark, sailed around Tim to finish a fine 4th. Runaway, the result of a juicy handicap, scored the double & claimed the handicap victory from Ol’ Yella & Wobbygong. With the prospect of sailing Sunday’s race out beyond Junno, everyone looked forward to Sunday.
With fear of showing my age & quoting from an all time classic movie, this was “groundhog day”. A promising breeze before the start, only to die after the start gun & leave massive holes around the course. Most boats fell into one or more. Add a bit of heat from the NW’er & frustration grew. Raptor was on the game though, & was always on the side of the course the breeze came from. However, while Ol’Yella & Raptor battled on the last run, Runaway clawed back from a fine last position, slipped inside these two, to take a lead they would never surrender. In the meantime, Firestorm, Add 123, Measurement Solutions & Stowe Australia were sucked into the ‘super massive black hole’ off Junno. Only Firestorm somewhat recovered to finish 5th, but the mental damage was done, hence the therapy described earlier for sailing around in circles. Apart from Runaway & Raptor, the star of the day was local boats Wobbygong & Marengo. The Gleeson boys hit the throttle in certain conditions & jumped away to get an easy 4th on scratch. Similarly Marengo sailed well and kept a level head for 6th scratch & 3rd handicap. With this experience Alex & crew will only get better. Bob, Hayden & Tarrick easily claimed the handicap victory from Runaway. Has Raptor peaked too early?
I need to add here that the Hawkesbury club once again were the perfect hosts. They ferry visiting boats when required & make us feel very welcome. The breeze is beyond their control. Maybe next year we’ll be blessed with 15 knot Ne’ers…
So next up is Teralba regatta next week. TT only but I’d ask all members to attend for a special occasion. Noel Robson, son of the first VS association life member Ken Robson, is attending the regatta with the plaque presented to Ken. Noel was an active sailor himself in the 70’s so it will be nice to hear about the good ol’ days. We are planning a gathering at 1:30pm to welcome Noel.
Following that is the nationals at Port Hunter. 2nd to 8th January. NOR will be out soon so keep an eye on the web site & your email inbox.
If you need more info let me know.