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Lymington Town Sailing Club Solent Circuit - Day 1

by Robin Milledge 15 Oct 2019 02:59 PDT 13 October 2019
J80 Fiducial tackles the breezy conditions during Race One of the LTSC Solent Circuit © Robin Milledge

Sunday 13th October saw the first race of the 2019 Lymington Town Sailing Club Solent Circuit, sponsored by Pennyfarthing Homes. With almost forty entries, ranging in size from Folkboats to 45ft cruisers, the organisers were all set for a busy first race.

Unfortunately the weather forecast of gale force eight and rain, deterred all but the most hardy sailors and only seventeen boats came to the committee boat anchored just to the east of Lymington River. IRC Class One were the first fleet to start, with Richard Downs Elan 333, Islay and Bob Bakers J97, Jay Walker giving no quarter at the start. Islay protested resulting in a twenty percent time penalty for Jay Walker. Ray Crouch's Adams 10, Boomerang revelled in the windy conditions, with the crew reporting boat speeds in the high teens on the downwind legs. Final placing saw Boomerang First and Islay second with Emma Gage and Stuart Brands Elan 340, Banjax taking third place.

Only two boats started in IRC 2, with Harry Hutchinsons classic Swan 36, Anna Mai taking the honours ahead of Pat Stables ever present Trapper 300, Google Eye.

In the Lymington Adjusted Handicap Class, Micheal Carringtons Sweden 45 made the most of the reaching conditions to lead the fleet home by over fifteen minutes from Denis Bates and crew on board Beneteau 325, Rollercoaster, although Richard Truscotts Westerley Konsort stole second place on corrected time by just ninety second.

With the wind gusting up to almost forty knots and a rain squall reducing visibility the Folkboats and J80s were in survival mode sailing a short course of multiple laps. Chris Hills, Padfoot managed to hold off a strong challenge from John Cooper and Becky Wiggly sailing Jen in the Folkboat class, with Nick Ingram sailing Otter coming home in third place. Four J80's made it to the start, and after a few dramatic spinnaker hoists, self-preservation took over as a priority as the crews struggled to cope with the increasing windy conditions. Chris and Hannah Neve raced to first place, followed by Andrews Hursts Fiducial and Toby Colliers Traffic Jam.

With all boats heading safely back to the river the committee boat and mark laying crews did the same. There were some relieved crews in the Solent Room bar for the daily prize giving enjoying some well-earned refreshment. The days racing was sponsored by Lymington Yacht Haven. LTSC would like to thank Event Sponsor Pennyfathing Homes and supporting sponsors Caldwells Estate Agents, Grabau International, Lymington Yacht Haven, Ringwood Brewery, Rivaaz of Lymington and Harken UK.

Racing continues on Sunday 20th October. Details of the event and online entry can be found at ltsc.co.uk/yacht-racing

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