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CoastWaterSports 2014

Enterprise Scottish Bluebell Series at Forfar Sailing Club

by Charles Morrish 26 Sep 2023 05:45 BST 23-24 September 2023
Race 1 of the Enterprise Scottish Bluebell Series at Forfar © Helen Wiles

The final round of the Bluebell series was sailed at Forfar SC in light and shifty conditions. Eleven visitors joined one local boat for an interesting weekend's sailing.

Race 1

A light westerly swung to the south in the final minute favouring the pin end - but that was close to the trees. Charles & Alison from the centre of the line led the fleet to the 'Gap' between the 'spit' and the 'shallows' where Gerry & Roger then took over to lead around the next mark and back through the 'Gap' which now provided the only beat on the course. Neal & Ellen and Charles & Alison then crept past the leaders who had found their personal calm - it was to be a story of the weekend. Neal & Ellen led to the finish of the race (shortened to one lap) while Charles forgot a mark and by the time Alison had beaten some sense into him Gerry & Roger had closed significantly. They took advantage of a flapping Charles to gain second place with Callum & Mhairi securing fourth.

Race 2

Only a reaching start was possible given the configuration of the Loch (prevailing Westerlies are fine) but a new course included a slightly longer beat across the Loch, albeit through the Gap from north to south. Four boats got away from the rest of the fleet which rafted up passing through the Gap on the run. At the end of the beat Neal & Ellen pulled way as Paul & Helen and Charles & Alison did spins enabling Keith & Caroline to move through to second. Those positions were held for the second lap and would have been the result, however Keith missed the penultimate mark and by the time he had recovered Paul had gained 2nd and Charles 3rd.

Race 3

After the first loop through the Gap and back with much place changing on the beat Paul & Helen led down the long fetch followed by Charles & Alison. Charles & Alison managed to creep past Paul to windward and these two pulled away from the challenging boats. By the start of the next long fetch Charles & Alison had built a significant lead but then found their personal calm and parked - Charles was still negotiating with the traffic warden as Paul & Helen found their private breeze to sail through to leeward and pop out in front. They held on comfortably to finish first with Charles & Alison 2nd and Gerry & Roger 3rd.

The Gap had provided some 'interesting' moments as the Ent fleet were beating through in one direction with the Handicap fleet reaching and running through in the other. This was obviously further complicated by the restricted space; shouts of 'Room to Tack' and 'Starboard' were heard echoing across the water. Much could be gained by getting it right and many places lost with giddy moments if not!

In the evening Forfar SC provided its usual wonderful hospitality. The evening's ceilidh was complemented by a great variety of delicious home made dishes and definitely the cheapest bar in the solar system. Several hangovers were in evidence the next morning.

Race 4

The heralded F3 gusting F5 had not yet arrived and in its place was a light and shifty easterly. A new course removed the possibility of fleets crossing through the gap by sending boats to a leeward mark at the western end of the shallows, though that caused a different issue! The beat to the windward mark was challenging: Neal & Ellen came out on top with Charles & Alison in second. These two pulled away from the rest but on the second beat from west to east along the length of the course Callum & Mhairi closed the gap and moved into second with Gerry & Roger also challenging. On the run Charles & Alison found breeze on the left hand shore to move back into second place.

Meanwhile Neal & Ellen seemed to have taken up residence at the leeward mark and were negotiating rent with the landlord. Charles & Alison rounded onto starboard and in attempting to lee bow them Neal's boat - now on port - refused to respond to the helm. Weed was the culprit. Neal's turns were expertly completed but Charles & Alison were now in pole position which they held to the finish. Callum & Mhairi followed Neal across the line to take 3rd. The weed had allowed all boats to pass unscathed on the first lap, but then caught some while ignoring others on the second; it certainly played a part in determining the final positions.

Congratulations to Neal and Ellen on winning the event, the Forfar Enterprise Cup and the Bluebell Master's trophy. Congratulations also to Dan Swaffield crewed by Sam Jones in winning the Bluebell Junior Trophy, helming an Enterprise for the first time at an Open Meeting.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4Pts
122859Neal PiperEllen PiperTynemouth SC11(5)24
223089Charles MorrishAlison Robertson MorrishStMLSC(3)3216
322901Paul YoungHelen BrownMidland SC/Forfar SC(6)2169
421820Gerry GoodfellowRoger WilloughbyStMLSC2(9)3510
521645Keith MilroyCaroline GoldStMLSC(5)44412
623054Callum GibbMhairi OgilvieLargo Bay SC4(10)10317
72210Tony WalkerJack WilliamsForfar SC(10)56819
820816Dan SwaffieldSam JonesStMLSC77(8)721
922108John CameronBobby MarshallNewburgh SC967(10)22
1022199Peter MiddlemissChristine MiddlemissTynemouth SC88(9)925
113054Dougie OgilvieYvette LewisLargo Bay SC/StMLSC(12)11111133
122308Duncan WilloughbyMark JonesStMLSC1112(DNS)1235

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