by Bernie Kaaks
Redink Homes Geographe Bay Race Week - After two days of racing, the favourites in each of the eight classes are starting to jostle for position.
Hoodoo Man and Just Cruisin now share the lead in the IRC Blue fleet. - Redink Homes Geographe Bay Race Week
Today’s long passage race started with a steady easterly breeze, which in typical Geographe Bay fashion, tailed off to a drifter during the dreaded 'noon lull', before a gentle breeze brought the fleet home late in the afternoon.
Black Betty - another line honours win today and lying one point off the lead on the points table. - Redink Homes Geographe Bay Race Week
In the IRC Blue fleet, Hoodoo Man, an Archambault 40 sailed by Craig Carter has been joined at the top of the leader board by Tony Carter’s Beneteau First 40, Just Cruisin. Carter had the narrowest of wins today ahead of Gary McNally’s Black Betty and Hoodoo Man. The first three boats finished within one minute of each other on IRC corrected times.
In the small boat IRC division, Mike Finn’s S&S34 Constellation, which was built using the vacuum infusion system, is proving too good for her rivals with two wins and a second in the three races to date, but a trio of Beneteau 34.7’s will be keeping her very honest during the week.
Charlotte's race ended with halyard problems after a promising start. - Redink Homes Geographe Bay Race Week
Premier Cruising fleets had the best of the weather pattern. Their shorter course enabled the bigger boats to complete the course before the breeze softened and predictably the placings were dominated by big boats – Brian Todd’s Sue Sea was first, followed by the X-55 Audeamus. Brian de Vries’ Steel de Breeze and David Clifton’s Eftel, both S125’s, shared third place. John Moore’s Marten 49 Charlotte lost a heap of time after a promising beginning with halyard problems.
Hans on Deck recovered well with today's first and fastest in Premier Cruising Green fleet. - Redink Homes Geographe Bay Race Week
Sadie Blessas made amends for a disappointing day yesterday in the Premier Cruising Green race today, with Hans on Deck edging out Spritzig 2 to take line honours and winning corrected time ahead of Rod Turner’s Nexus and John Wallis’ Golden Eagle.
Sports boats and the Under 10 metre division sailed three windward and return races today in difficult conditions, with light and shifty breezes. Race Director Ken Waller has handed his Fremantle 8 The Jean Genie to Peter Godley for the week, and must be smarting over the fact that Godley heads the leader board. Two Bakewell White 8’s from Royal Perth Yacht Club are also in the mix at this early stage.
Rod Beurteaux continues his good form in the Viper Don’t Forget Alice in the sports boat division, returning two firsts and two seconds from the four races run to date. Competition for the minor places is very tight.
Tomorrow’s program takes cruising fleets to Dunsborough for an evening barbeque while the racing fleets continue their windward leeward program. The highlight will undoubtedly be the night race, which for the past few years has produced good breezes and exciting racing.
Victorian yacht Sojourn had its share of problems with a tangled snuffer - the man aloft had his work cut out! - Redink Homes Geographe Bay Race Week