Photo © Pauline Love
10 Catapults lined up at the Carsington Cat Open over the weekend of 24-25 September.
In Race 1 Gareth Ede powered away on the trapeze from the middle of the line to build up a good lead, though John Terry was still in touch. These two held these positions to the finish, while Paul Ellis and Alastair Forrest recovered from poor starts to climb through the fleet and claim third and fourth respectively.
In Race 2 Terry and Forrest had good starts with Ede faster to leeward but not gaining. Forrest and Terry swapped the lead several times with Forrest getting ahead downwind only for Terry to gain the advantage upwind. There was a lot of confusion when shorten course was signalled for some of the fleets. Terry dived for the line followed closely by Ellis and Ede, and they were given a finish despite some doubt over whether the class flag was flying. Forrest started another lap, but turned back when he heard fellow Catapults getting the gun. He was subsequently reinstated to second.
In Race 3 Terry got off to a fast start in the middle of line, but this time the boats competing for the committee boat end were lifted over the fleet, and George Evans found himself defending a useful lead at the windward mark. However, Evans slowly slipped down the order as first Terry took the lead, only to lose it to Ellis who had climbed through the fleet, and finally Ede snatched third place from Evans on the line.
In Race 4 Terry and Ede were quick out of the blocks, while Evans was in contention after working very effectively upwind from the pin end. The front three were pushed hard by Ellis who got past Evans, and then Ede, but could not dislodge Terry.
With one race to go Terry held a 3 point advantage over Ellis who in turn led Ede by 2 points. After a close start in Race 5 those electing to go left up the first beat gained the most, and Ede, Ellis and Forrest rounded the first mark in quick succession. Terry came back at them on the second beat and caught Forrest, but, though he was close on the heels of the leading pair, it was Ellis and Ede who took first and second, respectively. Meanwhile Forrest held off a challenge from Evans to hold onto fourth.
Ellis's win in this last race closed the gap but was not enough to claim the top spot, so Terry took the honours with Ellis second and Ede third.