The inaugural DF95 Twilight Series was held at Montrose Bay last Thursday in fluky northwest winds up to around 10 knots or so, with most skippers opting for the A Rig and one or two choosing the B Rig. A modest turnout for the first of the series with 6 boats hitting the water under the direction of PRO Rod Marshall. With the bouys set in a simple windward leeward course, racing commence a little after 4:30 PM with Race 1 being a "test" and a short 1 lap affair and the remaining races extended to 2 laps of the course. Eight races were completed for the series.
Andrew Wardrop had the honour of notching up the very first race win at Montrose with yours truly second and Peter Darcy third. The same three podium placers in Race 2 with a reversal of first and second and Darcy with another third place. Andrew fought back in Race 3 with yours truly second and Darcy on a hat trick of thirds. It was blow for blow in Race 4 with No. 39 taking the win, Darcy improving his results with a second and Andrew settling for a third place. Race 5 saw a double for myself with Mike Holbrook getting in the mix with a second and Andrew sailing consistently and on the podium again in third spot. Race 6 saw Darcy take the gun from Kyle Stewart in second place and consistent sailing saw Andrew on the podium yet again. Race 7 line honours went to yours truly with Darcy finishing in second place and Kyle with his second podium of the day in third place. The final race and another win for No. 39 with Andrew finishing in second place and Darcy rounding out the podium in third place.
Final results saw a comfortable win for myself on 7 points from second place Andrew Wardrop with 12 points, 2 points ahead of Peter Darcy on 14 points. The afternoon was enjoyed by all skippers and the "new" venue proved its potential as an alternative venue for Radio Sailing. One unique aspect of Montrose Bay is when the Mona ferry makes landing at Mona. Several minutes afterwards the bow waves come ashore in what can only be described as a series of mini tsunamis of around half to three quarters of a metre in height, creating a nice point break off the point, and some very lumpy water once the wave rebounds of the sea wall. At scale it was mountainous seas for the DF's and some nice "rides" if you time your runs with the incoming waves.
Sunday was Opening Day for MBYC and a healthy turnout of Risdon Brook skippers added to the potential of the day. The weather was however, not so amenable. With a solid northerly of 20 to 30 knots, only one MBYC 420 ventured out into the conditions for a short "survival" exercise and after returning to shore, MBYC cancelled the Sail Past and the afternoon's race. With the difficulties of setting the marks in the conditions and a few teething problems with the new marks (the weights were not adequate for the conditions), racing for Radio Sailing was abandoned as well, although a few skippers showed the "Big Boats" how resilient radio yachts are in heavy weather, donning their B and C Rigs and frolicking in the heavy conditions with a casual sail around. Despite no racing, the day was still a success with many of the MBYC members showing great interest in the dozen or so IOM's, DF65's and 95's and solitary Marblehead on display, and many of Risdon's members making positive comment on Montrose as a venue for Radio Sailing
Next Wednesday is combined IOM/DF95 racing. Next weekend is the Marblehead State Championships at Risdon Brook with Saturday's briefing at 11:15 AM and racing from 11:30 AM. Access to the lower ring road on Saturday is NOT permitted before 10:30 AM due to other community events at the park. Sunday is the usual 10:15 AM briefing and 10:30 AM button press. If you haven't entered yet, please do so!
Til then, wet sails.
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