6M sailing at Clapham on the 15th April.

April 16, 2012 at 4:38 pm | Posted in News | Leave a comment

A good day at the pond. The weather was bright and breezy, very breezy at times and gusty. There was a good turnout of members and 6/7 boats on the water.
I put my boat on the water for a practice but found the wind strong and gusty, laying the boat over at times and beyond control. After ten minutes or so I gave up and brought the boat in. Mark seemed keen to race and having no boat of his own to sail I offered him mine, which he sailed very successfully for the rest of the meeting.(I am sure the wind had eased a bit by then, well that,s my story and I,m sticking to it)
Having got all the boats on the water we started racing about 12, and once started we continued without break untill 2pm, getting in 13 races.
As can be seen from the results, Mark was the dominant skipper. I doubt it was because my boat was the fastest (see result of race 13) but likely down to tactics and reading the wind. In the three races that Mark was not the winner, the first was because he made an error at the start in getting there too early and having to go round, showing how important a good start is. The second he lost to Hugh and the third, which was the last race of the day and proved to be more of a match race between Mark and Leslie. It was great stuff all round the course but Leslie won in fine style.
Most of the boats were trouble free but two or three were subject to malfunction of one sort or another and the fleet got smaller as the day progressed. The day seemed to show that practically any design of boat can win if it is sailed properly and, after watching Mark, even a small adjustment in sail trim can reap rewards. I think many of us put our boat on the water with the same sail set as was used at the previous meeting, without regard to the fact that wind strength and/or direction might be different.
Results were as follows-,

Race 1. Mark, Grant, Leslie
Race 2. Mark, Grant, Lesloe
Race 3. Mark, Ted, Leslie
Race 4. Mark, Leslie, Grant
Race 5. Grant, Mark, Leslie
Race 6. Mark, Grant Hugh
Race 7. Mark, Grant, Jim
Race 8. Mark, Leslie, Grant
Race 9. Mark, Ted, Leslie
Race 10. Mark, Leslie, Grant
Race 11. Mark, Hugh, Grant
Race 12. Hugh, Mark, Grant
Race 13. Leslie, Mark
We are still starting late. I was there at 10.30 and the boat was rigged and ready by 11am but it was not untill, after a bit of prompting, we actually got on the water and started racing at 12.
A suggestion has been made that there should be a set “start” time and that any skipper not on the water and ready to race by that time could still join in the racing, but would NOT be included in the results. Judging on past months start times this requirement would have affected the published race results drastically and might spur skippers to get to the pond and on the water earlier. It is a good idea and a not unreasonable Rule but, as with all Rules, it requires some poor soul to enforce it. As a thought, such a Rule might cause some skippers to think “I can,t/don,t want to get there any earlier and if I am not going to score why bother going” and so defeat the whole object of the change. I leave the thought with you.
On a personal note, I enjoyed the day immensely. To see my boat in the hands of an expert skipper and winning races gave me great satisfaction. I felt I had joined the ranks of the old and infirm who chose to employ the services of a proffesional in the quest for success. (In case Mark gets any ideas, I use the word “employ” in it,s loosest, non payment, sense.
I hope everyone else enjoyed the day as much as I did, and well done Leslie. Derek.

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