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RS Sailing 2021 - LEADERBOARD

31.7 class in the JOG Nab Tower Race

by Andy Phelps 3 Apr 2006 12:02 BST 1 April 2006
Mark Lloyd's 'Whistler' has a close call during the JOG Nab Tower race © Andy Phelps

With a strong spring tide and ominous looking weather the 31.7s had an early departure to make Gurnard in time for the 9AM Class 5 start of the JOG Nab Tower race.

The strong spring tide and strong south-westerly wind saw the entire Class 5 fleet sailing away from the start line in order to hold station and not get swept over the line early.

Electra had the best start of the 31.7s with Whistler close on her stern, and it was straight into a luffing match at the start of the 33 mile race. Having to clear Snowden, both boats soon bore away with Whister, carrying a slightly larger spinnaker managing to gain the lead by the buoy.

Manaru had an interesting start as the topping lift was not attached to the pole and delayed their hoist while the bowman was sent up the mast to retrieve the line.

Now sailing for the most part in glorious sunshine, the fleet then made for the deep water channel to gain the most favourable tide. Electra and Manaru both made ground on Whistler on this leg, only to see her sail away again and pass between the forts at the head of class 5.

Hardening up onto the breeze to sail for the Nab Tower became a tricky affair, with Whistler and Electra keeping their spinnakers up and sailing low, while Manaru switched to whites-only and sailed a higher course. This proved a good decision for Manaru, as Whistler and Electra ended up battling against a lumpy sea to make the Nab Tower.

Whistler was the first 31.7s to round followed by Manaru and then Electra. Battling back against the wind to The Forts, Whistler maintaind her lead, with Electra clawing back slowly on Manaru and managing to pass the forts in second place.

With a building chop proving a real boat stopper, Electra tacked off left towards the island shore in search of calmer waters and a slightly favourable tide. This proved to be a good decision as when Whistler tacked towards the island shore the lead had been halved.

Now only separated by 20 boat lengths, the two crews battled hard for the next hour towards Norris, and rounded the headland with nothing in it.

Passing Snowden, Electra tacked in towards the river Medina, again looking for favourable tide and less chop, and despite encountering three ferries in the river entrance, popped out ahead, managing to cross the line, second on the water in Class 5 with Whistler close behind.

This was a great start to the JOG season, especially as the 31.7s are competing for the first time for their own trophy. The 31.7 Trophy will be awarded to the boat with the most JOG points including all of the Cat 3 and Cat 4 races.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoBoat NameHelm
1st GBR 8198T Electra Andy Phelps 
2nd GBR 7592T Whistler Mark Lloyd 
3rd GBR 6993T Manaru Tony Dicken 

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