Large Cats were on canteen duty and so thanks to Kurt Griffith, Yvonne and Paul Monaghan, and Lois for pitching in. Kurt buttered buns like a true professional. Apologies, I was ‘Johnny-come-lately’ and then proceeded to show Yvonne how not to crack eggs before being moved to simpler duties more suited to my culinary skill-set. So far, no reports of salmonella poisoning so I guess you could say things went pretty well canteen-wise.
A camera crew from WIN TV was in the rigging area to publicize next week's Kembla Klassic and Katagatta. Tony Sanderson was interviewed - which all went smoothly - until someone pointed out that Paul English had stolen the show by unwittingly changing into his wetsuit gear in the background. Perhaps it’ll generate extra publicity!
Les and Josh Porter came for a visit and kindly volunteered to assist Ray Jones on Crew duty. As it turned out, the IYC were hosting the Contender State Titles over the weekend – and we ended up with our course overlaying their course. As Tony S so aptly put it, “It was contentious out there with so many Contenders to contend with.” (ha ha!) But seriously, I didn’t hear of any problems - apart from the similarity and proximity of the rounding buoys. …More on that later. By the way, those Contenders looked difficult to sail. Single-handed, single-hulled, single-sailed with a trapeze would be tricky to say the least!
Ray, Les and Josh set a port course, with the top mark towards the west of Primbee, followed by a long reach to the wing mark at the IYC entrance and bottom mark on south side of Gooseberry Island. The TY’s, Monos and Small Cats got away smoothly in the easing 12 knot breeze. The Large Cats gave chase with Bob and Johnny on newly named Nacra 5.8 ‘Road Apple’ winning the start. Paul E (Playtime - Nacra 16sq), Kurt G (Wreckless – Nacra 16sq) and me on (Symphony 2 – A Class) in pursuit.
In the very A Class friendly conditions, Symphony led Road Apple at the top mark by only a couple of boat lengths. It was hard to make out the wing mark so I asked Bob where it was and he obligingly showed me by blasting past. Paul E and Kurt G on the 16Sq's were having a close fought tussle. On that first reach Paul E was sailing alongside Billy Ledger on his 14Sq when Bill slipped on his trampoline and the boat momentarily veered into Playtime. Paul lost some time and this allowed Kurt G to skip away and set the tone for their race with Paul E trying desperately to play ‘catch up’ with Playtime.
On the second work Road Apple was leading and headed to the right side. I hoped to avoid a persistent knock on the right so I tacked and headed to the left. Unfortunately, the top mark I was heading for was actually the IYC mark - oops! - and lost a minute or so. After the race, I heard that Paul Monaghan sailing his Windrush Chesha suffered the same fate by rounding the IYC wing mark instead of ours. It seems there could be a market for a nautical Navman.
Finally, Bob and Johnny sailed to a resounding win by almost 3 minutes across the line – in conditions that weren’t at all favourable to the Nacra 5.8. On corrected time, Bob won by almost 13(!) minutes from Symphony.
Full credit goes to Kurt Griffiths who managed to hold off hard-charging Paul English. Paul E managed to whittle the margin down to only 40 seconds – making ground on the downwind legs - enough to take 3rd place overall on corrected time. Well done everyone!
This weekend is the Kembla Klassic and Kembla Katagatta!
So far the weather forecast is VERY promising with 10knot Easterlies predicted on Willyweather...
One last thing, let’s make all our visitors feel most welcome. We want the KK and KK to be a friendly, fun regatta and an indelible tick on everyone’s sailing calendar.
See you all there!
Regards, Ross Boyd