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,
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