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adidas Poole Week 2017 at Parkstone Yacht Club - Day 5

by John Linford on 1 Sep 27 August - 1 September 2017

Thursday saw Poole Harbour provide the full gamut of wind and weather to delight and occasionally confound the competitors and Race Officers - with a full 360 degree shift in the wind, a band of rain, lightning, rainbows and glorious sunshine through the course of the day.

Once the wind settled, the stronger breeze of 12-15 knots allowed for some excellent racing on the Top Triangle for the Lasers on their Olympic Course, and the other fleets all enjoyed a longer harbour tour to take full advantage of the excellent sailing conditions.

As competitors return to the Parkstone clubhouse to enjoy a barbecue in the sunshine, the Committee Boat was greeted by one competitor - "Thank you! That was awesome! I'm alive!"

Every Which Way (report from David Harding)

Every sailor knows that, when a boat tacks, it tends to change direction – typically by around 90 degrees or so. But anyone watching some of the Poole Week fleets heading upwind in the first race on Thursday might have been forgiven for wondering what was going on, as boats appeared to be tacking yet not actually turning.

The reason was a series of massive wind-shifts, particularly on the right of the courses at the top of the harbour sailed by the Flying Fifteens, Lasers, RSs and Merlin Rockets, turning the race into a game of snakes and ladders. The breeze wasn't exactly steady further down the harbour for the Dolphins, Shrimpers, XODs, Wayfarers and handicap fleets either, but it became more settled later in the day when it picked up to 12-15 knots to give everyone a good workout.

Despite the testing conditions the race officers kept the racing on schedule and the fleets also showed good discipline, notably the Flying Fifteens as they approached one gybe mark eight abreast and rounded with no contact or even shouting. That's some achievement in such a competitive fleet, but very much in keeping with the spirit of Poole Week.

More information at www.parkstoneyachtclub.com/Sailing/Poole_Week.aspx

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