The seven of us were presented with a beautiful sunny morning, but with very light winds. Tim and Derek had bought along their 6 Metre class yachts, with their massive lead keels requiring custom transport trolleys to haul them around.
We weren’t sure whether the One Metres and the Six Metres would be able to sail together as one fleet, but in the conditions they proved remarkably well matched. The larger sail area and waterline length of the six metres presumably being offset by their being slower to get going because of their extra weight.
So it was purely through skill that Derek was able to lead the way for us today in all bar the last race. In that race, Derek being the gentleman that he is, was assiduous in doing penalty turns, which pushed him down the fleet.
Our club members tend to sail for enjoyment as much as the pleasure of winning. To that end we like to eschew protests, protest committees and the emotions that can follow, relying on each sailor to do the honourable thing when they believe they are in the wrong. In fact we are so honourable that it is not so unusual for both yachts to do turns after a coming together! In the rare case of penalty turns not being taken, sarcastic comments from the rest of the fleet are usually enough to shame the offender into action.
Behind Derek’s six metre, Nick’s one metre was consistently the best of the rest, while most of us tended to see success when we caught the start and the wind right and the back half of the fleet when we didn’t. Although finishing at the back, new member Andy did an excellent job of keeping up with the rest of the fleet and will clearly be competitive once he has some more experience under his belt.