Another glorious spring day at the Brook today with light winds, maybe up to 5 knots at times, mainly from the west nor-west and a few frustrating swings and lulls to spice things up. I had the pleasure of being PRO and after taking everyone's donation to enter the race, gave the skippers their handicaps. Wednesday Coordinator Stuart Harris has split the fleet into scratch , 20 seconds, 40 seconds and 60 seconds after the gun, and the usual 30, 20, 10 second penalty for each race. Overall podium finishers will have their handicaps adjusted at the discretion of the coordinator.
Denis Lees won the first race off scratch, with Chris Wood off 20 in second and Peter Sylvester off 40 in third place. John Banks stepped up to the podium in Race 2 after starting off 20 seconds with an improving Rob Cooney off 20 in second place and the Red Dragon picking up third spot from 40 behind. A steady breeze blowing down the dam was enough to call Race 3 Long Distance and handicaps adjusted accordingly. The extra distance and a few holes to negotiate allowed the experienced salties to reign back the scratch markers with Bruce Rose off 40 seconds taking the gun well ahead of backmarker David Jones and sailing below his true handicap, Chris Wood in third place.
At the lunch break, Chris Wood topped the leader board on 9 points, with Bruce Rose 3 points adrift in second spot and Andrew Wardrop 4 points back in third. Rob Cooney was in fourth place on 18 points and the hungry pack of John Banks, Rod Jackman and David Jones all tied 1 point back in fifth place.
Racing resumed with a few hints of a sea breeze but the nor wester eventually kicked back in and the same course was sailed for the last three races. The back marking Team Vickers stole the show in Race 4 with the Silver Fox beating home Rod Jackman and David Jones, all off 60 seconds. Chris Wood sailed another consistent race to win Race 6 from the improving Denis Lees in second place, with John Banks in third.
With the last race to be sailed, Chris Wood was comfortably on top of the leader board with 10 points, Denis Lees' second in the previous race shot him to second spot with 16 points and John Banks jumped from sixth to third on 17 points. The final race of the series was won by Peter Sylvester off 50 seconds, and another solid second for Denis Lees with the always competitive Rod Jackman in third place. Final results were a comfortable win and custody of the Plank Trophy to Chris Wood, second place to Denis Lees who received the Coordinator's Cup and John Banks taking home the honour of finishing third.
Next Sunday is the IOM State Regatta and again I urge the Wednesday sailors to enter, if not come and watch with the family.
Til then, wet sails,
A fine sunny day and a solid A rig breeze from the NW greeted skippers as they arrived for Day 1 of the State Marblehead Championships. By Race1 it had swung to the SW and become very light forcing PRO Les Hanson to set a shortened course. Six races were completed before the lunch break. After lunch the consensus agreed that the breeze was indeed a sea breeze and had swung further to the south allowing for a full course to be set. A further ten races were completed by days end. Lisa Blackwood dominated the day winning 8 of the 16 races, Michael Hickman winning 3 races, Peter Sylvester and John Hall winning 2 races each and yours truly with a solitary win.
Provisional results after Day 1 sees Lisa on 21 points, 10 points clear of Michael Hickman on 31 points, 6 points ahead of myself in third place.
Day 2 and skippers were greeted with light to glassy conditions with the wind coming from the roughly south west direction. There was a fair amount of fog and cloud but the skies were clearing and it turned out to be a pleasant sunny day. As usual at Risdon Brook, the wind was variable and at times was almost northerly to absolutely nothing as we drifted over the finish line, and throw in the odd 2m length of fox tail water weed the caught a few including yours truly. Lunch was called after Race 20 finished in photo perfect mirror conditions. A sign of a sea breeze? By lunch end the first wafts were making their way over the dam wall and Les Hanson called boats to water for the final afternoon session. Race 23 was when the sea breeze really kicked in and I called for a rig change after winning the race, with everyone except John Hall changing as well. All I can say for the last 4 races is F3 + B Rig = Rocket. Going into the last race, Lisa Blackwood's lead had dwindled to 3 points from myself with Michael Hickman 13 points back in third place overall. The F3 proved her lines in the final race taking line honours and the Championship by 1 point after an uncharacteristic fifth place from Lisa. Michael Hickman sailed consistently to secure third place overall, well clear of the rest of the fleet. Les Hanson is to be commended for a fine effort in his duties as PRO getting a further 10 races completed to make it 27 races for the championship. At times setting a course was a challenge, and at times remembering the course was a challenge as well, but with the wind so variable before the sea breeze came in, we were bound to get a windward leg somewhere. I'm sure all the skippers would agree with me that the courses were ideal to show the Marvellous Marbleheads in action.
Next Sunday is the IOM State Regatta with the usual briefing at 10:15 and racing from 10:30 AM. I would encourage the Wednesday sailors to enter and gain some valuable experience, and have some fun as well.
Til then, wet sails,
Stuart Dawes, 2015 State Marblehead Champion. Woo Hoo!
Pretty good conditions for those skippers who turned up for the weekly IOM Handicap Series. After the laying of a hitch mark about 20m west and to leeward of mark 6, PRO David Jones gave us our dosage of handicap and got things going in a nice B rig breeze in the usual west to nor-west direction at 5 - 15 knots.
The Commodore and John Deegan were off scratch, Don McLeod was off 20 seconds, Stu Harris off 40, Andrew Wardrop and Bruce Rose off 60, myself off 1:10 and Rod Jackman back-marking at 1minute 30. No problem says Rod and wins Race 1 from Stuart Harris and David Murfet. Congratulations Rod, you are the first person to try the new 2 minute maximum handicap. I reckon I had the closest win of the day in Race 2, narrowly by a bow bumper I was told, from Don McLeod and David Murfet literally on the line. I thought Don had just got there, but when Dave gave the handicaps for the next race, I gained 30 seconds and thought I was being robbed until it was explained that I had won the last race, sweet. It was the turn of the scratch runners in Race 3 with the Commodore winning off 20 seconds, from John Deegan off scratch and who looks like he is coming to grips with an IOM, from Bruce Rose off 1 minute in third place. Race 4 was Long Distance with the 50% addition to handicaps. With the breeze quite fresh it was a rather quick long distance, the run back to the finish taking only a few minutes, that's the boat, not me! Backmarker Andrew Wardrop off 60 seconds took line honours from Stu Harris also off a minute and Bruce Rose again in third place off 1:10. Bruce now off 1:20 was first across the finish line in Race 5 with the two Stu's (3 minutes and 1:30) in second and third place.
With one race to go the leader board was pretty tight with only 3 points separating first to fifth. David Murfet and myself on 11 points, Stu Harris and Bruce Rose tied on 12 points and Andrew Wardrop 2 points adrift. The final race went to Andrew Wardrop off 1:30, with Stu Harris off the same in second place and yours truly, now in the 2 minute club as well, in third spot.
Final results needed a countback to split first and second, my solitary win being enough to take home the Plonk Trophy, with Stu Harris second and Andrew Wardrop 1 point behind in third place. Thanks to DJ for doing a fine job as PRO.
This Saturday and Sunday is the 2015 Tasmanian Marblehead Championship with briefing at 10:15 AM and racing from 10:30 AM. Lets hope for a good breeze.
Til then, wet sails,
A glorious spring day at Risdon Brook for Round 1 of the IOM Summer Series. Clear sunny skies and a nor-wester of 10 - 15 knots had the 12 skippers umming and ah-ing over which rig to choose, but it became fairly obvious that B rig was the wise choice for the mornings scratch racing. PRO for the day was Les Hanson, ably assisted by David Murfet.
Ray Joyce took line honours for Race 1 with Michael Hickman second and John Hall third. Race 2 saw Rod Jackman take the win from Ray Joyce and David Jones. Race 3 was won by yours truly with Michael Hickman second and the Silver Fox third, who then took out Race 4 followed by Rod Jackman in second and myself in third. Race 5 was when Ray threw out the challenge by easily winning from Rod and Michael. Chalk up another win for Ray in Race 6 with Darc and Stu Harris in the minor positions, and another win for Ray in Race 7 with Rod and Darc a distant second and third. Ray had it in the bag for the eighth and final race of the scratch series and nailed the door shut with another win, with Michael and myself filling the minor places.
No surprises who won the day. Ray Joyce was streets ahead in the final results with 7 points, 9 points clear of Rod Jackman in second place with 16 points, 1 point ahead of Peter Darcy in third place.
I can't tell you much about the handicap racing, as I left after the scratch racing, but I can tell you that there was a three way countback for first, second and third and a countback for fourth and fifth. A couple of wins for Michael Hickman gave him the edge from Peter Sylvester's solo win and Peter Darcy third place overall.
Next weekend is the two day State Marblehead Championship. Briefing and 10:15, racing from 10:30.
Til then, wet sails,
A fine day on the Brook today with sunny conditions and a light but puffy breeze. swinging from SW to NW up to around 5 knots. PRO was Bruce Rose and 14 skippers got Race 1 on the go on their respective handicaps. Darcy won with a very favourable handicap with David Murfet in second off scratch, and Don McLeod in third off 30 seconds. The extra 30 seconds didn't bother the Silver Fox as he won the second race off 60 seconds with David Jones off 40 seconds and Ray Joyce off 1:30. Stu Harris took the honours in Race 3 off again a pretty sweet 30 seconds with Tony Brewer second off the same, and well done new member and scratch starter John Deegan for taking third place. John Banks got the early start of 10 seconds and couldn't be caught in Race 4, but David jones now off 60 and yours truly off 1:10 gave it a good try. Race 5 winner was Peter Sylvester off 1:10 with Stu Harris in second place off 60 seconds and Andrew Wardrop visiting the podium from 1 minute after the gun as well. The breeze had a little more strength to it as it swung around to the NNW so Race 6 was declared a Long Distance race and handicaps given a 50% boost. Not happy with an earlier third place, John Deegan kept his transom clear to win off 15 seconds with Andrew Wardrop off 1:40 and yours truly in third from 2:00.
Overall winner for the Plonk Trophy and a 30 second chaser was David Jones with 18 points. Second place went to Peter Sylvester 5 points behind on 23 points and third place went to the Silver Fox with 24 points from the countback kid (that's me) on 24 points as well. The Encouragement (to Drink More Wine) Award for skippers starting on 30 or less went to John Banks.
A pleasant and enjoyable day was had by all skippers with very acceptable behaviour after incidents. Discussion of what happened was in a civilised manner and the less experience had a better understanding of what went wrong. Good stuff!
Note. I have "corrected" a couple of skipper's handicaps.
Sunday is IOM Summer Round 1, scratch AM, handicap PM, and Les Hanson PRO, but you already new that. I believe the Dragon Force fleet resume their twilight sailing next Wednesday afternoon after the handicap series.
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