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HYS Hamble Winter Series - Week 2

by Trevor Pountain 15 Oct 17:43 BST 13 October 2019

The forecast for Sunday the 13th October did not look great on Saturday night, but PRO Kathy Smalley, decided to go out and have a look on Sunday morning.

The CV made its way to hamblewinterseries.com where former Hamble Winter Series PRO, Stuart Childerley, was also trying to start the last event of the Fast40+ Championship. Discussions on how to divide up the Solent took place, but in the end, having had two looks at it, the Fast40+'s retired to "the Southern". It seems, as Lance Corporal Jones once said, "They don't like it up 'em". Indeed, their max wind speed is written in their rules.

As the start time approach a strong squall swept through the area. Some competitors decided to call it a day. Regular event photographer, Paul Wyeth, was not available on Sunday - did he know something we didn't? In his place was Karen Bornhoft, who cadged a lift to the start area on La Nef IV, John Noe. No sooner had she been un-ceremoniously dumped in a rib, than John decided to head La Nef IV for home too.

Anyway, enough about what didn't happen. Of the 28 teams who ventured out, 16 sailed the course, two retired and 10 were DNS. The PRO set a beat to Delloits followed by a reach to keep the early starters away from those still beating. One sided beats to maintain separation were also the call of the day, along with short downwind legs and a short fetch to the finish. The smaller boats did a short leg to QXI while big boats went over to Prince Consort.

Class 4, the little boats, had the greatest numbers. The smallest boat in the HYS Hamble Winter Series, Protis, Quarter Ton Fauroux, sailed by Ian Southworth, shot round the course. It was the first time Ian had had his Quarter Ton Cup crew back together since their win. So well did they go that they overtook a Sigma 38 from the class above before the finishing line. All Ian had to say afterwards was that it was "lively". Ian Handley brought the Mustang 30, GR8 Banter, home in second and another regular, Stan the Boat, Sigma 33, Toby Gorman was third. Polly, Impala 28, Meakins and Cudmore, had her first outing of the series in fourth place. She had the additional ballast and heavy weather experience of Grandfather Philip Meakins for the day.

In Class 3, Chris and Vanessa Choules brought With Alacrity, Sigma 38, home in first place. Chris thought goose winging was the way to go down wind. Vanessa however, disagreed, when she was caught by the flogging genoa. The spinnaker was reinstated. Second came Quokka 9, Half Tonner, James Crew, making their first appearance together in the series. John England brought Vitesse, Sigma 38, home in third.

Some boats go particularly well downwind when there is a bit puff about. The J88 is such a beast. Even Class 2 leader, Simon Perry, with Jiraffe, J109, had to concede this. "We were quicker upwind" said Simon, "but Tigris just shot past us downwind!" Bar talk later confirmed that 21 knots had been seen on the Tigris speedometer. Jiraffe managed to hang on to second, but the next two were the J88's, Jongleur, Richard Cooper and Sabriel Jr, Dirk Van Beek.

Up in Class 1, Ian Atkins, used a cool hand to bring his Melges IC37, Icy, home first. Pegasus DekMarx, Farr 30 evo, Malcolm Wootton came second. No reefing for Pegasus Malcolm explained, otherwise the forestay tension disappears all together. Thunderbird, Rupert Wolloshin's Farr 40, came third but not without incident. A spinnaker block blew out with such a bang whilst Malcolm was below, that he thought a winch had gone. They also experienced "one heavy, prolonged, serious broach which led to a hole in the A0 kite. Tangent Minus 1, Arcona 430, Paul Aisher, came home safely in fourth.

Next Week sees Race Week 3 of the HYS Hamble Winter Series, Week 2 of the Hamble Big Boat Championship and the final weekend of the Hamble One Design Championships, which includes the RS21 National Championship.

The day sponsor next Sunday is Key Yachting. Full Results: www.hamblewinterseries.com/page/results-by-hals

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