Spring Series B
17th April 2016
On a sunny Sunday afternoon with light winds and a falling tide, 15 boats took to water for the Spring Series B which comprised of two races.
With low water at 15.19 p.m, the course was set further out to sea so that the two races could be run.
Upon the start of the first race, a number of Lasers favoured a course further out to sea; however, Laser 165710 began the race by sailing parallel to the shore line occasionally putting in a tack out towards the first mark SP1 which did pay off because after rounding SP1, Laser 165710 increased his lead on the fleet, followed by the Laser 8.1, the ISO caught up with the Laser 8.1 and sailed into second place, after rounding SP2 the ISO was catching up with the lead Laser. Amongst the rest of the fleet, the Laser 8.1 was doing battle with Laser 161576 and for a time managed to retain his third position.
After rounding the North mark and starting the second leg Laser 165710 again favoured an inshore course as did the Laser 8.1 whilst Laser 161756 and the ISO were to favour the course further out, this did pay for the ISO because he took the lead in the race.
Due to a falling tide and the breeze decreasing the Race Officer decided to shorten the race. In the meantime there were a number of retirements from this race.
1st Laser 165710 Colin Smith
2nd Laser 161756 Allan McNeil
3rd ISO 1158 Karl Royer and Matthew Bradfield
4th Laser 88 Harvey Burwin
Spring Series B
17th April 2016
With a much reduced fleet of boats, the starting sequence for the second race has yet to begin as the Race Officer is still finishing boats from the first race.
With the sea now almost flat calm with the occasional ripple visible across the water, the fleet is now 8 boats strong and the race sequence is now under way with the boats milling around the start line.
The boats are quite tightly bunched around the start line; however, two Lasers have broken away from the rest, Laser 161756 and Laser 42119. All the boats with the exception of the ISO appear to be favouring sailing out to sea, the ISO is sailing parallel along the shore line and at present it appears that he has the edge because there is pocket of wind inshore whilst further out it is quite calm.
The leading Laser, which is the 8.1,does appear to be pulling away from Laser 161756 and the rest of the fleet. The ISO has now tacked out to sea and has caught up with the Laser 8.1. The fleet are making slow but steady progress up to SP1 and at present the ISO appears to be the lead boat, the fleet is now quite spread out and with a decreasing breeze actually making it up to SP1 is proving to be painfully slow and unfortunately for the boats the breeze is very definitely inshore.
Three boats are at last approaching SP1, Laser 8.1 has rounded the mark first and is edging away from the ISO who has now raised the spinnaker and whilst it is not filling in these flukey winds, they are gradually whittling down the Laser 8.1's lead. The Aero of Phil Rees is on it's maiden voyage in Herne Bay waters and is doing quite well in these light airs. The lead Laser is holding on to his lead and the ISO is currently in 2nd place but the rest of the fleet are gradually catching up, upon rounding SP1 the Comet Zero has raised its blue spinnaker and having clear wind is slowly catching up with the fleet.
Laser 8.1 has rounded SP2 and is now sailing into calmer waters, the ISO has managed to get round the mark ahead of the rest of the Lasers who appear to be have come round the mark almost together. The leading Laser is being chased down by the ISO and two other Lasers, in fact the Laser 42119 has taken the lead and pulled away from the Laser 8.1 and Laser 161756.
Once again the Race Officer has taken the decision to shorten the race as Laser 42119 rounds SP3 and heads for the finish line, three boats are approaching the finish line and it could almost be a photo finish.
As this is a handicap race the results are worked out on the lap times of each individual boat
1st Comet Zero 128 John Sinclair
2nd Laser 42119 Andy Ekins
3rd Laser 17884 Peter Bowell
4th Laser 161756 Allan McNeil
Race report and photographs by Liz Smith