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Felixstowe Ferry Sailing Club Special Race Series - Race 3

by Edward Swain 5 Jun 2019 05:35 BST 26 May 2019

Sunday the 26th of May was the rescheduled date for the third race in the FFSC Special Race Series Sponsored by Suffolk Sails and Billie Box. The Suffolk Sails flag showed a South-South-West warm but strong breeze. The sun was shining so a mere five boats decided to rig up and go sailing.

The briefing informed the competitors of an out-to-sea course of channel-course, Dip, Outer, Haven, Dip, Channel course. The competitors were also informed of their starting times - the RS400's of Roger Lewis and Elias Woodard and David Robertson and Asa Robertson. Starting ten minutes were the Dart 18's of Andy Robinson and Isabelle Crichton-Smith and Sam Walker and Katelyn Lucas. Finally, the last ones to start were the F18 team Ed Swain and Zac Monk.

The start lines were very empty for all boats so the fetch out of the river was very simple. As the boats approached the Deben bar, they were greeted by higher winds than expected (18 -20 knots, gusts of more) and choppy waves over the bar.

Not long after the 400's start was the Dart 18 start. This was now down to one boat due to illness on board the other. This meant that the other Dart 18 could focus on chasing down the 400's where they still led on the beat up to Dip and the reach down to Outer. The Dart then used its pace to navigate the big, windswept seas and eventually overtake the 400's.

Whilst this was happening, the F18 had started and made it to the green buoy where they would find their forestay to snap causing a dismasting in a very unfortunate place. With help from the safety boats they eventually made their way back to the club.

Then came the rain. This really set the mood - dismastings and capsizes performed by the 400 team of Roger Lewis and Elias Woodard when rounding the Haven mark. Now they were in hot pursuit of the other 400.

With the Dart 18 leading way out in front there was really no catching them so it became a race between the two 400's.

Eventually, the boats screamed downwind back into the river mouth and across the club line where the Dart 18 of Andy and Isabelle took first place, Dave and Asa in a 400 took second, and Roger and Elias, also in a 400, took third, with both the other F18 and the Dart 18 took a DNF and a DNS.

Again, FFSC would like to thank the sponsors of this series - Suffolk Sails and Billie Box. They are providing great prizes for the series which you could be in with a chance to win at the end of the series by racing in the next race in the race series - the Methersgate Race on the 30th of June.

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