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Medway RC Laser Club Winter Series at Barton's Point Coastal Park - Week 12

by Jamie Blair 19 Mar 21:31 GMT 17 March 2024

After the break for Mother's Day the turnout for the twelfth race day in the Winter Series was well attended with 11 sailors braving the "Ides of March". Was it to be a bad omen for one or all?

The rain was with us and wind direction of S. Strength just 11 knots. Course was laid in front of the café with the start line in the bottom third of the beat. A wing mark formed the triangle.

Race 1 got off with the usual frenzy and calls of windward boat. Mark Penny (03) in clear air was first to the windward mark and despite efforts of the chasing pack of Tony Alexander (04) and Jon Moon (84) he logged the win.

Race 2 with no real bias on the start line Jamie Blair (51) started in midline and squeezing to windward of the pack allowing a tack on to port and arrived at the windward mark in the lead. Jon and Tim Towsend (45) started to windward but were unable to catch Jamie up the beat.

The wind was showing signs of gusting up with nosediving performances greeted with loud cheering. The wind also shifting gave all the challenge of which side up the two beats for each race. Sometimes the right side paid well but never a guarantee.

The beat was long enough to play the shifts up the middle and cover the fleet (hopefully) but even that didn't always pay. We saw the usual confluence at the windward mark with contact on the way in and exit with those eager to bear away but as windward boat RRS 11 was the ticket for a penalty turn!

Roger Gibbs (32) and Quentin Strauss (58) were a casualty coming together and stuck fast until arriving at the control area.

Race 3 was a repeat win for Jamie, with Tim very much on his transom taking every puff downwind to make an overlap but never quite making it. Tony and Lucian Stone (75) in their own scrap for third and fourth.

Race 4 again with Jamie out in front but hardened up too early at the leeward mark and having to round again. Tim and Roger ceasing the moment for a first and second. Mark and Jon together up the final beat to the finish with Mark just ahead.

Race 5 with a finely judged start by all eleven boats spread along the line, with Jamie making the most of the shifts and scoring a fourth bullet. The hound dog alias Tim was again very close behind. A personal best for Quentin with a well-earned third.

Races 6 and 7 were another first for Jamie, again with Tim in pursuit but in race 7 penalty turns saw him back in the pack. Tony using his C rig in the increased wind was able to point higher and keep the rest of the fleet at bay for a second place. Mark cheering his third place.

At the break Jamie was ahead by 6 points; Tim, Mark and Tony only split by 4 points.

Race 8 saw Tim take control and with a refreshed Lucian after pit crew work giving him a run for his money. Jon and Mark ahead of the pack.

Race 9 Lucian found form to keep ahead of Tim; Jon and Mark again leaving their placings to the last beat to the finish.

Race 10 was another bullet post for Tim, with Jon close behind to record another consistent result. By race 11 with Jamie off the water with water in the electrics saw his lead evaporate but it wasn't all the Tim show. Jon struck to the front, with Roger as his guard boat from Quentin and Jamie.

We at this point welcomed the crowd that had formed, made up of sailors from the club's Dragon Class fleet out on a walk before lunch nearby. We hope we impressed them with our exceptional racing.

Race 12 was a race of changing fortunes with penalty turns sending front runners down the fleet. Those with clean heals profited and Lucian grabbed a win, Jon second and Charles's perseverance a third.

Race 13 and 14 Lucian/Jonny had the bit between his fingers to record two bullets. Tim had been leading, ahead of Lucien/Jonny and Mark at the leeward mark and should have been able to stay ahead to the finish but they both went past as if it was standing still. A mainsheet caught around the mainsheet spring over sheeting the sail. Mark was there also with a second and a fourth.

Race 15 was to be the last race of the day. Tim led by four points from Jon so who was going to predict the overall winner for the day? Tim stamped his command on the race with a lead from the front. Roger and Jon following up.

Tim celebrated his win, Jon second and Mark third. Wet gear didn't stop the whole fleet racing the 15 races.

Our next Sunday racing is scheduled for the 24th March.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmR1R2R3R4R5R6R7R8R9R10R11R12R13R14R15Pts
1st45Tim Townsend4321226121‑9‑737135
2nd84Jon Moon32‑55435332125‑8341
3rd3Mark Penny14‑645‑834445524550
4th75Lucian Stone8746(DNS)(DNF)DNS2137111457
5th51Jamie Blair5113111(DNC)(DNC)DNC49103758
6th32Roger Gibbs‑10(DNF)926547882672268
7th4Tony Alexander2639(DNS)6255710‑11451074
8th58Quentin Strauss9(DNF)1073476(DNF)534610680
9th72Charles Pegram6588798(DNC)9‑106389995
10th62Spencer Pope787‑10‑97986.568896897.5
11th76Bob Woolford(DNS)(DNC)DNC11810DNF96.591110111111131.5

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