A glorious sunny winters day at Risdon Brook for the July Long Distance Series with BOM forecast of 5 to 15 knot norwest to northerly winds easing around mid-afternoon before strengthening later in the evening and that's pretty much what was on offer from Huey. A good mix of 9 IOM's and 4 Marbleheads fronted for Race 1 which saw a solid 10 to 12 knot norwester and the IOM's opting for their A rigs and the M's going with their B rigs. Handicaps were allocated with Les Hanson, John Banks and David Murfet as the scratch starters, the rest of the IOM's starting a further 1:30 behind and the M's giving the front markers a 3 minute head start. Course was the standard Long Distance course from start between 1 and 2, a solid windward leg up to the outer bay mark and then a nice long run back down to finish between 1 and 2. Again, weed was the skipper's nemesis with at least one skipper suffering in each race.
David Murfet had his "new" Mojo tuned nicely to keep the fleet at bay and take line honours in the first race, as too Les Hanson finishing second with John Hall pegging back most of the field with his Marblehead to take third place. The fleet increased by one with Kyle Stewart adding another IOM to the mix starting with the other IOM back markers. Race 2 saw IOM back marker Rod Jackman join the dots and avoid the weed to get the gun from David Murfet on the podium again in second place and backmarker Kyle Stewart sailing well to finish in third spot. Race 3 saw the wind starting to ease and some of the M's changing to maximum sail area. Line honours went to Les Hanson for a second podium, and Dave Murfet making three out of three podiums with a second place and David Jones also sailing well to finish in third place. Race 4 saw Les Hanson take the gun for a double and John Banks keeping the pack at bay with a second, the Silver Fox Peter Darcy making the right moves to take third place on the podium. After the first drop, Les Hanson led the field with a 1 point margin from David Murfet on 5 points and second overall, and David Jones the best of the IOM back markers in third place.
After the lunch break, racing resumed with John Hall overhauling the entire fleet to take the win with his Marblehead from second place IOM Les Hanson with another top three finish as too Kyle Stewart finishing in third. Race 6 saw IOM back marker Stuart Harris get home first followed by John Banks and Bruce Rose; three IOM's filling the podium. Race 7 was a nightmare for some with yours truly managing to get to the top mark first as the wind died to virtually nothing, only to pick up a serious piece of weed and see the fleet disappear in what little breeze was left. John Banks avoided any weed problems to take the gun, followed by Ray Joyce staying out west on the run with his new Marblehead and his only podium for the day, and the Silver Fox finishing with a second third place for the day.
Overall and runaway winner for the day was Les Hanson with 19 points, comfortably clear of second place Peter Darcy with 28 points, 1 point ahead of third place John Banks with 29 points.
Next Sunday is Round 4 of the IOM Winter Scratch Series with racing rom 11:00 AM.
TasWater has advised that Risdon Brook Park will be CLOSED ALL THIS WEEK for maintenance and repairs so the will be NO Wednesday sailing, however a number of us will be taking IOM's and or DF95's for a casual sail at Montrose Bay Yacht Club from 10:30 AM
Til then, wet sails.
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