2013 RPYC Colonial Cup Team have proven to be an international force to be reckoned with by taking out the Colonial Cup Series. Chris Pye of the RPYC Team reports the exciting news.
'We started day three at one point in front, after winning nine races out of 16, with each of the eight races on the last day worth two points- so effectively we needed to halve the day to win.
A long chat between the skipper, crew and RPYC Member (and international umpire) Richard Goldsmith, proved very helpful to us in designing our tactics for todays event and we started the day full of optimism.
The day dawned very foggy and with just the hint of rain, no wind and very un- Australian conditions with a big tide forecast for later in the day, we reasoned that we needed to win early to keep the serious racing in the slacker tide conditions.
The RPYC Colonial Cup Team, making life tough for other competitors in 2013
So after an enormously hard fought first race, the result was not encouraging- we did well but not well enough, the RLYC won and we missed out by one place - which meant that for the first time since we won the first race in the regatta, RPYC was behind. But there was quite a nice breeze settling in, the fog was disappearing and the tide was not unmanageable, so we believed we had a chance still.
But clearly we had to make more of our good starts and we had to hit the start line hard in the next race to put the pressure on RLYC and take the race away from them to get our side going.
Lunch break on Brambles Bank, Solent. One win away from victory. Chris Pye’s J80 in foreground and Ron Packer in the background. Photo taken from Gary Griffiths boat - 2013 Colonial Cup
Well hit it hard we did - and the next race saw us get three excellent starts and after a bit of a scrap, the RPYC team had the first three placings in that race - the first time that had happened in the series and most importantly it put RPYC back in the lead.
Then it was bang, bang, bang, goodbye RLYC - RPYC won the next three straight and took off the series, we did not need to sail the last three races so the final day was four to one in our favour, which meant that the race score at the end was a very pleasing 13 to eight to RPYC (with the last three not sailed) and a regatta score of 18.5 to 11.5 with only six points not sailed for.
It was fitting that Ron Packer won the last race by a short half head from our teams boat, with Gary [Griffiths] fighting manfully with the other three opponents - and of course, first and second placing wins any three boat team race- so we were home- because Ron and his team sailed an outstanding series and they richly deserved to get the last
bullet, particularly as they put a great mark block in at the last mark to confirm our second place - we were just a bit more than a boat length in front of the third boat, with both rounding the last mark on port tack at the time, but the look on the RLYC helm of that third boats face when he saw Ron's boat appear around the back of our stern - smoking straight at him on starboard- was the photo of the regatta if you had been in the right place with a camera.
Take your pick... You get a canon for 1st, 2nd and 3rd. Very pucker! - 2013 Colonial Cup
Great thanks to Andrew and Vera Waldby, the Commodore, Flags, GM and staff and all of the Members and sailors at RPYC who have supported the efforts to rebuild our teams racing capability and provide us with a good platform to build a presence for RPYC Members as a part of the international teams racing circuit.
I am sure it has the potential to become an annual program which many Members of RPYC can have a great deal of pleasure from, for many years to come.'