Another fine spring day on the Brook today for the final round of the IOM Winter Series, Round 6. Conditions were ideal with a barmy 22 degrees and a steady 5 - 8 knot breeze from the NW. Nine skippers fronted for the mornings handicap racing and PRO Les Hanson got racing underway at the scheduled time and chose Course 1. Alan Furmage, David Murfet and John Nieuwenhuizen were off scratch, Bruce Rose with his new Kajun (?) was off 30, Andrew Wardrop off 40, John Hall and myself off 50 and Ray Joyce and Darc off 60 seconds.
Alan Furmage shot off from scratch in Race 1 and got to the judge first with Bruce Rose coming second and Andrew Wardrop in third. The Commodore won off scratch in the second race followed by Team V9, Peter Darcy and myself in second and third respectively. In the third race I managed to steal a win from 6th around the last mark by using the western gate and a beautiful little left hand shift, while the rest had gone round the other gate and into a hole. Alan crossed in second and Ray Joyce in third.
After three races, I held a 1 point lead from Alan, David M and Bruce Rose all on 11 points. The rest of the back markers were a few points adrift. Bruce showed that his new boat was just as quick as any, winning Race 4 from Alan in second place and John Hall cracking the podium for the first time in third. Race 5 saw another winner, this time back marker Ray Joyce off 1:10 followed by fellow back markers Andrew Wardrop and Peter Darcy. Race 7 was the final race of the Handicap Series and I came from the back to win from Bruce Rose and Ray Joyce in third.
Final placing's for the handicap racing saw Bruce Rose win the day on 14 points, yours truly on 15 points and Ray Joyce third with 18 points.
After lunch was scratch racing, same breeze but slowly easing, same course. David and Alan called it quits but Wayne Behrens made the fleet of 9 boats. Team V9 won and came second in the first two races, myself winning from Darc and John Hall in third in the first race, and Darc winning from me and Ray Joyce in third spot for the second race. Myself, John Hall and Darcy on the podium for race 3 and Ray taking a win in Race 4 with that boat #75 in second and Bruce Rose sailing well to take third place.
The last race was started in a light and funky breeze with lots of passing lanes. I wish I could say I won for I nearly did and had it in the bag with 30 metres to go, but as easily as I stole a win in Race 3 of the Handicap Series, the wind vanished around me and I watched 4 others hold enough breeze to reach the finish line before I got any. John Hall rubbed it in as did Andrew Wardrop and Bruce Rose, all taking the podium. With 20 minutes to go before stumps, we waited to see if the breeze would settle back in, but it wouldn't cooperate so Race 6 didn't eventuate.
Final placing's for the scratch racing saw the V9 Wasabi winning with 6 points, John Hall in second place on 10 points and V9 #5 Peter Darcy one point behind in third place.
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