Tricky manoeuvres between islands
Light winds and trees still in full leaf made conditions tricky, especially navigating around the islands at Kingsmead’s Solo open held on 6th October. When the wind was as forecast at North East, beats were straight up the lake, but as it swung more Easterly the winds shadows grew and picking significant shifts much more telling.
Simon Corper and Mike Ball led early on in race one; Ian Ayres and Godfrey Clark gained significantly on them on the first pass between the islands by taking a more conservative approach to the major wind shadow. These four sailed very closely for nearly a lap when Clark fell away after nearly missing a mark. Ball over took Corper having now learnt the optimum route between the islands, but was pegged back on the penultimate beat. Corper then found some stray weed on the last leg to allow Ball through for the win; Ayres was third and Clark fourth.
The second race saw a slight change of course and this time Corper initially led Ayres until the latter’s local knowledge allowed him through on the second beat. Sailing an unfamiliar boat gave Ayres a few tacking problems in the lightest airs and this let Corper back through using his superior upwind speed to take the lead through to the finish, Ball was third with Frank Catt making a late charge to pass Clark for 4th place.
The third race was initially lead by Clark, but Corper was showing plenty of pace in his new boat and gradually pulled clear for a comfortable win. Ayres was again third with Catt fourth and Ball fifth. Brian Pickess consistently lead the second pack around the lake for sixth place overall.
1st 4816 Simon Corper (Reading)
2nd 4714 Mike Ball (Papercourt)
3rd 4735 Ian Ayres (Kingsmead)
4th 4120 Godfrey Clark (Fishers Green)
5th 4075 Frank Catt (Downs)
6th 4322 Brian Pickess (Kingsmead)