With a lot of work happening on BT during the break, she looked a treat as we strode to the line. Lots of encouragement and oooh aaahs made us feel pretty good I must say. A new kit of sails, fresh antifoul, some repair work on the hull, some new rigging and a rudder fix just to name a few things, made the boat feel like it was flying. We had hoped to get a little practice in before the race but we had some trouble getting the main up so we had a short little play.
Then shit got real….
We tried to follow SF and get a good run to the line but with about 1.30s to go we lost him and got in traffic so we tried to follow Resurgent, but with 45 to go they turn on a dime near us and shook us of, we did a quick 360 and that took a bit too long as everyone else hardened up and were off. Missed the start by about 30s so not too bad for us.
Our goal was to stick as close to the field for as long as possible and that was working with some nice work up to the first mark. We seemed to be similar speed to LOEG when close hauled but lost a little in our tacks.
After the first mark it was going to be a long downwind run with the wind strong and square. Almost a reach wind. We decided to hold off putting the “Big black dog” up (as Phil Widders had now named it) until under Gladesville bridge and it then took a little longer than hoped. We also lost a snap shackle off the clew so that took some time to rescue the kite.
Many of you have spoken of these ‘Barber Haulers” or “Tweakers” and on Memphis we didn’t have them. Even on BT we didn’t have them. But I have already organised a set as I now Know why I need them. The Kite was very high and rocking around a lot. Fun for the whole family….
Rounding 1 and with some boat speed getting around a mark seems so much easier and less stressful.
Coming back to 5, we see SF and AOE and I think RSGT with a kite up but LOEG didn’t. We decided to go with out and that was probably the leg that cost us the most as we also broke the Main sheet cleat on the block and had to work the rest of the race without it.
Heading back up to 6 for the last time and the MHYC boys were playing on our turf. Last year on Memphis they were screaming at us both verbally and with their boats. This year though was much more civilised and we played with a Sydney 38 and a couple of first 40.7’s for a little bit.
The wind had picked up by now and we were seeing 16-18knts on the gauge, so we held of getting the big black dog up till the bridge again.
Yep… Of all places….. right in front of the club and in front of almost the whole fleet….
My first Chinese Gybe…..
Man that was fun…. NOT….
Again some problems as the spinnaker pole topping lift bridle broke so let’s just get the big thing down and get home. And take a breath….Nice little work to the finish after 3 and time to relax and have a cold refreshing beverage.
Well Done everyone on a great race. At the club for the debrief and it appears almost everyone in both divisions seemed to have a few little dramas out there but we all got home to tell our war stories.
Thanks to the starter and the everyone out there for good clean racing and lots of fun.