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31.7s in the Raymarine Warsash Spring Series - Week 6

by Andy Phelps 27 Apr 2006 14:18 BST 23 April 2006
Close racing for the 31.7s on week 6 of the Raymarine Warsash Spring Series © Eddie Mays

Drizzle, grey skies and 3 knots of wind greeted the 31.7s as they made their way to the start of race 6 of the Warsash Spring Series.

The committee boat, stationed near to Flying Fish, flying the AP flag, announced that they would wait for a 5-6 knot of breeze to fill before starting racing, which it kindly did 45 mins later from the south east.

Because of the postponement, the committee combined the IRC4 and the Sigma 38 fleets, so it was a busy start line for the 31.7s.

Whistler proved a little too eager and was called OCS, while Manaru had an excellent start. Electra did OK towards the pin end while Tai Pan was trapped in the second row and had to tack off for clear air.

Electra got the best of the first windward leg to N Ryde Middle and rounded in front closely followed by Whistler who had sailed a fantastic first leg after correcting their OCS. Tai Pan, Manaru and Papillon followed in that order with only a few boat lengths between them.

The short downwind leg to Marinetrack was largely uneventful with the boats holding their relative positions.

The next windward leg back to N Ryde Middle saw the wind lighten and become more shifty with boats sailing at all angles over the race course. By the time the 31.7s reached the mark, their rounding order was the same but the separation was greatly reduced.

On the next downwind leg to B&G, Whistler showed a real burst of speed, and catching Electra, the two boats proceeded to have a close luffing match. Unable to get past Electra to windward, Whistler opted for a lower course to try and drive through below her and stay with Tai Pan who had tried to get by to leeward unnoticed.

With the wind lightening still further, Electra sailed a high course towards the mainland shore, while Manaru, went the opposite way, in search of more wind towards the island shore, leaving Whislter, Papillon and Tai Pan sailing deeper wind angles in the centre.

The high angles and mainland shore rewarded Electra and she rounded the mark ahead. The island side of the course proved to have more wind allowing Manaru to overtake all the other boats and approach the mark in second place.

It was then that the wind completely died, and with ten minutes remaining, all of the 31.7s were scored out-of-time. A slightly disappointing end to the series, however the 31.7s still had some great light air, boat-on-boat racing.

Congratulation to the crew of Whistler for winning the Series and the 31.7s will definitely be back for more Spring Series fun next year.

Overall Series Results:

PosSail NoBoat NameHelm
1st GBR7592T Whistler Mark Lloyd 
2nd GBR6991T Tai Pan David Jobson 
3rd GBR6993T Manaru Tony Dicken 
4th GBR8198T Electra Andy Phelps 
5th GBR6953T Papillon Stephen Armitage 

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