Inner Spring Regatta - Tough conditions on Day 1

Forgacs Defence Inner Spring Regatta 2012
Richard Howard
Forgacs Defence Inner Spring Regatta 2012 first day of racing saw the all three divisions head offshore for a 10am start in a fresh 22 gusting 25 knot westerly which meant for some quick spinnaker runs down to the start for the more enthusiastic within the fleet. Reefs went in and the 22 yacht fleet readied themselves for some testing boat handling conditions to come.

Race officer Ted Anderson ably assisted by an a dedicated race management team got all fleets away almost on time sending them around a windward leeward two lap course. In division one the TP 52 stretched its legs around the course to take a commanding lead while the pack of six Farr 40’s, the Corby 43, the 43’ Nelson Marek 43 Quest and the MC38 Cone of Silence tussled it our for the remaining podium position.

Quest also endearingly referred to as 'the old girl' by skipper Tom Braidwood showed her division that a bit of age is not always a bad thing beating half the Farr 40’s top the top mark in the first race and going on to finish well in contention. Despite a good start Quest later had to retire from the days racing after turning his No.3 headsail into two No.5 jibs with the former cleanly parting from luff to leech in race two.

In division two well seasoned champion IOR Farr 40 Aurora secured a jump at the start allowing her to cross the fleet but was reeled in by Ian Bowers RP36 Sprirt which went on to win IRC as well as Barry Kelly’s M34.

Race one in the Farr 40 fleet went to Enigma with Forty and Leroy Brown rounding out the podium finishes.

The breeze softened for race two to about 16 knots. Division one saw Anger Management take the honours in IRC and Spirit again take IRC division two from Anthony Paterson’s Tow Truck. In the Farr 40’s Enigma again took line honours from Martin Hill’s Estate Master and Sam Hill’s Forty in second and third respectively.

In the final race of a long day on the water Michael Martin’s TP 52 won IRC division one from Anger Management and Cone of Silence skipper by Michael Green. Division two once again went to Spirit.

In the Farr 40s Enigma finished the day off with a nice picket fence again taking top spot followed closely by Estate Master and Forty.

All sailors appeared to enjoy the day on the water however a few were moaning and groaning that bodies may not have faired as well as boats in the tough conditions – It didn’t seem to stop most of them enjoying NCYC’s hospitality and BBQ put on for sailors on return to the club.

Tomorrow will see the Farr 40s out in Stockton Bight bright and early for a short windward leeward race starting at 9am before returning to the harbour to join the remainder of the fleet for a longer double point race of approximately 15-20 nautical miles finishing back in Newcastle harbour mid afternoon.

Full Results available here.

Newcastle Cruising Yacht Club website