For the penultimate race day of the winter Frostbite series at Dell Quay Sailing Club, race officer Graham Dalton set a simple triangle course in glorious sunshine to make the best of the north-westerly wind direction.
As the fleet sailed down the harbour during the first race, the wind backed – allowing the asymmetric boats to carry their spinnakers for the first part of the beat back up past the Quay.
At the front of the fleet, the RS400s exchanged the lead with some close racing until a gust caught one out, leading to the first capsize of the day.
With the race shortened to two laps for the slower boats, the RS400s completed a third lap.
And with results being calculated on average laps and then handicaps applied, Warwick Hoddy and John Denyer in the 2000 were placed first, closely followed by Malcolm Buchanan in his Solo with the RS400s of Peter King and Jamie Prescott and Bob Marshall and Neil Bryant taking third and fourth places respectively. The second race saw the whole fleet complete three laps with the 400s leading on the water but dropping to fourth and sixth place, with Hoddy and Denyer being clear winners on handicap, Buchanan second and Ken Baker also sailing a Solo moving up to third.
With only two races left to complete the series, Malcolm Buchanan is set to take first place overall. Warwick Hoddy and John Denyer are firmly on course to finish second in the series with John Purdy well placed to come third.
The final two races in the series are scheduled to take place this Saturday, February 7, from 12.30pm.
Sixty boats came under starter’s orders for the third and fourth races in Chichester Yacht Club’s Snowflake series.
A helpful westerly breeze meant the fleets were able to start into a reasonable beat for the first leg of the trapezoid course.
In the fast fleet, Hayling’s David and Fiona Sayce celebrated their return to Fireball sailing taking the honours on the water as well as on corrected time securing a 14-second advantage over the Merlin of Mark Waterhouse and Matt Currell from Parkstone, with Shoreham’s Alex Jackson and Frances Gifford in third.
Meanwhile, in the medium fleet, 40 boats made for an interesting start line with a number of competitors gaining an new understanding of the intricacies of rule 20 at the inshore end.
It was evident the middle and pin ends of the line paid dividends with Emsworth’s Richie Bailey breaking into clear air and the lead which he retained for the duration of the race, only to be relegated to third on corrected time behind the Solo of Hayling’s Ian Barnett and the 2000 of Emsworth’s Jonathan Townsend and Barbara Langford.
The slow fleet were dispatched around a triangular course that proved to be to the liking of Warsash’s Sally Lorimer and Pippa Jones coming home clear ahead of Chichester’s Isabel Porter in second and Finlay Swanton from Felpham in third.
The Mirror girls carried this form into the fourth race, again taking the chocs ahead of Porter’s Topper with Emsworth’s Georgina Cosena and Bella Coote taking third in their Pico.
In the medium fleet, many learned the lessons from race three electing to use the pin-end of the start with a number of boats looking to have jumped the gun in the final seconds before the start, though in the end only one fell foul.
Bailey was again quick to establish his dominance over the fleet on the water only to be denied on corrected time,this time by the GP14 of Chichester’s Nick and Biddy Colbourne with Felpham’s Guy Mayger taking third.
In the fast fleet the racing was again a fight between the Fireballs and Merlins for the honours. This time the spoils went to Jackson and Gifford’s Merlin with reigning Fireball National and European champs, Chichester’s Sam Mettram and Richard Anderton, in second just ahead of Shoreham’s Sophie Mackley and James Warren in their Merlin.
Standings (after four races): Fast handicap - 1 David & Fiona Sayce (Fireball) HISC; 2 Sophie Mackley & James Warren (Merlin Rocket) Shoreham; 3 William Warren & Mark Oakley (Merlin Rocket) Shoreham. Medium handicap: 1 Richie Bailey (Laser) Emsworth; 2 Guy Mayger (Solo) Felpham; 3 Jonathan Towsend & Barbara Langford (2000) Emsworth. Slow Handicap: 1 Sally Lorimer & Pippa Jones (Mirror) Warsash; 2 Isabel Porter (Topper) Chichester; 3 Geogina Cosena & Bella Coote (Pico) Emsworth.