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Medway Yacht Club 'Pirates Cave' 2017 Autumn Series Race 2

by Aaron Goodman-Simpson on 5 Nov 5 November 2017

Sunday 5th November was Race 2 of the 2017 Medway Cruiser Class Autumn Series and provided crews with cold temperatures and bright sunshine, with a westerly wind of 11-18 knots.

After a decent upwind and upriver start, Full Tilt (Arcona 400) led the Class 1 fleet back down river, leaving the rest of the fleet to bunch up behind, whilst hugging the north shore down to the Folly (bouy 25); all in any attempt to cheat the incoming tide!

Leading the chasing pack were Jemini (J80), Big Zipper (Delher 34) and Reefer x (X99).

Once past the fort Reefer x elected to go north to dodge the tide, leaving a trio of Delher 34's (Big Zipper, Zephoros and Valkarie) to run along the south shore.

All seemed settled in their race strategies until some sort of luffing match (?) saw the three Delhers and Jemini reach up hard to the north shore - talk about banging both shores on one leg! Most impressive. Or was it intended?

Once round the pier by bouy 15, it was apparent from looking at Full Tilt, that the reach to bouy 13 was too tight for the kite but as ever Reefer x did not see the obvious and had yet another spinnaker mishap, as they had a full on broach, pinning the boat on its side. Back down the race ladder they went as the rest of the fleet sailed through on a two-sail reach up to bouy 13.

The next leg was the first of two sparkling spinnaker runs down to Blackstakes, before beating back up wind to bouy's 12, 14 and 13, prior to repeating the run.

By the time the second Blackstakes run was complete, Full Tilt was long gone (again), leaving a race within a race as Reefer x led Big Zipper, Zephoros, Valkarie, Vegas (J92) etc, back up wind to the finish by bouy 29.

Class 2 boats sailed Course 23 with Petite Fluer (Ecume de Mer Prototype) leading Scout (Folkboat), Ynot (Splinter) and the evergreen Suntrek (GK24). Good to see the class 2 boats all relatively close on the water.

It is clear that the consistent boats are coming to the fore in the series.

Full Race results can be found here.

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