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Leader Weekend at Rollesby Broad Sailing Club

by Ian Ayres on 12 May 2016 7-8 May 2016

With only one of the crews having raced (or even sailed) in 2016, Saturday's short personal pursuit sprint races gave everyone a chance to check their lines, remind themselves of port and starboard and generally shake off some of the winter cobwebs on Saturday afternoon. Start order was based on recent results with starts and finishes at the jetty rather than a line. Mike & Val Sherwen (Bawdsey) had obviously listened at the briefing as they collected the bottle for the first two races. A quick adjustment of the starting order produced a big win for Roger & Sybil Morse (Welwyn Garden) in the third race whilst Chris & Jane Wharmby (Milton Keynes) and Ian & Sharon Ayres (Rollesby) both had at least one second but also at least one disastrous start!

The wind in the East and newly emerging leaves on the trees meant tricky conditions for course setting and opportunities to lose or gain significant distance and places at any time at Rollesby as the Leaders joined their Multisail Open on Sunday 8th May.

The reaching start was very close, the Morses looked likely to sail over the top of the fleet but the local Ayres pairing knew the course better and narrowly led race 1 throughout; initially their closest pursuers were the Sherwens but it was the Wharmbys who emerged first from the parking area at buoy 2 to take second. Despite leading at the first mark of race two the Ayres found themselves last at the second mark with the Wharmbys clear ahead and Tricia Hudson & Sarah Cole (Hickling) in second. The never give up conditions saw the Wharmbys slow in a wind hole on the last beat with the Ayres taking the lead on the very last tack of the race.

After lunch the Eels Foot Race saw four different race leaders! The Morses had a good lead through the cut; the Wharmbys took the lead en route to the tricky pub mark, with Hudson & Cole and the Ayres (last to reach the cut!) closing right up by avoiding the worst of the wind shadow. The Wharmbys headed off downwind with a good lead which they held for nearly a lap until the Ayres got the approach to the pub mark right second time around. Hudson & Cole proved faster than the Wharmbys on the long downwind return to the club emerging from the cut in second then pulling away; with the Sherwens closing up from behind 2nd, 3rd and 4th were within a minute of each other after a 75 minute race.

Overall Results:

1. Ian & Sharon Ayres (Rollesby)
2. Chris & Jane Wharmby (Milton Keynes)
3. Trisha Hudson & Sarah Cole (Hickling)
4. Mike & Val Sherwen (Bawdsey)
5. Roger & Sybil Morse (Welwyn Garden)

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