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Bollé RS500 Grand Prix at Stone Sailing Club

by RS Class Association 24 May 2013 14:07 BST 18-19 May 2013

A rather disappointing turnout for the second Bollé Grand Prix at Stone Sailing Club on the Blackwater in Essex. The forecast for the weekend was for generally light winds, with the possibility of something less (!) at unspecified times over the two days. We were sharing with the K6's and Musto Skiffs, with the 500's the final start, so we had the opportunity to use the other fleets to show us where the tide was strongest.

To race 1 on Saturday, and Richard Smith and Andrea Prince discovered that the start area was not quite as close as they had been told, thus giving Peter Curtis, with new crew Sophie Jones, and Ana Zmura and Keith Sykes a few minutes head start. Both started port end on a very biased line and then headed straight over to the right of the course to be carried up to the top mark in the strongest current. The wind was good for trapezing most of the time on the beat, but soaking down the run was the order of the day. Peter and Sophie had a slight edge on boat speed and slowly pulled out a decent lead, which they held to the end.

For race 2 Richard made up for being late for the previous race by being early for this one. Peter and Sophie again had an edge on boat speed and gradually pulled away, but the other two had a good battle, with Richard and Andrea coming out ahead.

For race 3 the slackening tide made it more imperative to find pressure than just to head for the optimum current. There was more opportunity for snakes and ladders, although Peter and Sophie managed to stay ahead throughout the race, but with a significantly reduced lead compared to previously. Ana and Keith managed to edge out Richard and Andrea in this one.

The club dinner on the Saturday night was excellent and the beer and wine flowed rather too freely for your correspondent's comfort on Sunday morning. The day itself dawned with a reasonably keen breeze, but this didn't last much beyond the sail out to the start line.

The first race of the day started in a dying breeze, with the pattern of the previous day being repeated for the first lap. However, the start sequence had been changed for day two, so we found ourselves engulfed by Musto Skiffs at the lee mark and through the second beat. Peter and Sophie had a comfortable lead heading into the last run, but were prevented from gybing to cover the others by sundry Musto Skiffs doing their thing. By the time they did they sailed into their own private hole and watched first Richard and Andrea and then Anna and Keith sail serenely past 50m to windward. Following this the wind died almost completely, and though we waited around at the start area for an hour, it was to no avail, and racing was canned for the day. Richard and Andrea put the most energy into pumping their way back to the club and arrived back first.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4Pts