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Selden 2020 - LEADERBOARD

Conwy Fife One Design 'A' Series Race 11 at Royal Anglesey Yacht Club

by Mike Hardie 26 Jun 08:29 PDT 18-19 June 2022
Conwy Fife One Design 2022 'A' Series race 11 © Catherine Hartley

None but the brave (or foolhardy?)

On a day when the 'Crema' blew off one's Cappuccino and seagulls flew backwards, things were not looking promising following an early morning pitch inspection by Nick, Race Officer for the day, and it was decided to make a final decision at 13.00 in case conditions had 'improved'.

Come the appointed hour the great and good assembled to 'assist' Nick in his decision making, by offering all sorts of advice. As the tide and wind were now both going in the same direction the sea had consequently flattened considerably, and with the wind having got no worse (or it has to be said, any better) and with the sun had also coming out to play, he who must be obeyed, Nick decide that sailing was possible and set off for the Race Control Hub, to ensure that A. the catering would be up to standard for the expected throng of spectators and B. to devise a suitable course for those foolish (or brave) enough to sail.

6 boats elected to risk it, and set out for the moorings to rig. Enthusiasm waned somewhat onboard as a particularly nasty rain squall passed through, with a gust of 40 mph recorded at the Lifeboat station (which is defined as a Gale by Mr Beaufort, who uses 'generally impedes progress' as part of his definition) this may explain why a certain degree of reticence descended on the fleet as we all sat cowering waiting for the storm to pass.

Clear sunny skies followed and the wind moderated sufficiently to allow us to leave the moorings and head for the start line. With a course of B7, B8, B10, Nwy set, the fleet had a clean start and headed upwind to Gallows Point and beyond to B7. 29 (Trigger & 2 young ladies) took an early lead from 35 (Hugo, Sasha and Megan) with 37 (Rhys, Rowan & Guest) 39 (Gavin & one third the Men of Panache, Miggy) 42 (Family Booth, minus Henry, who had decided he would rather go for a swim around his MS!!) and finally 38 (Mike, Pippa & Barry). Both 29 & 35 managed to ground at Gallows, allowing 37 to move into the lead rounding B7, followed by 39, 29, 35, 42 and 38.

The downwind leg to B8 started calmly enough as we all wiped the salt from our eyes and debated the wisdom of a Spinnaker. One by one they appeared and were set with varying degrees of efficiency and with no marked increase in speed as we were already travelling at hull speed. As the leaders approached Beaumaris and the expectant spectator crowds (who were enjoying the customary afternoon tea, enhanced by an Apple Upside down cake, provided by Val), those of us on the water 'enjoyed' a gust of 30 MPH (which Mr Beaufort describes as a 'Strong Breeze' which as part of the definition uses the expression 'Umbrella's used with difficulty'!!) As a Fife spinnaker is somewhat larger than said umbrella, this may go some way to explain why common sense prevailed and the big flappy sail disappeared from view on all boats, who then had a rather uncomfortable 'by the lee' run to B8.

The beat back to B10 saw 37 consolidate their lead and 35, who had by now washed the mud from their keel, move up through the fleet into second place. 42 suffered a Jib malfunction allowing 38 to move into 5th behind 29 and 38. These positions remained until the mercifully shortened finish. So 37 becomes the sixth winner so far this season after 11 races.

Having put the boats to bed and been taken to shore by the ever watchful Archie (the young apprentice Bosun) and Arwel (the Deputy, Second in Command Bosun) we walked across the Green to the welcoming embrace of the warm and dry club and the even more welcome first pint of Doombar (other beers are available) to begin the traditional 'would have, could have, should have' discussion.

It was a race which will become embellished with the passage of time, as the saying goes, 'As we get older, the stories get bolder'.

So the current 'A' Series positions are as follows:

18 - Sian - 18pts
38 - Sard - 21pts
35 - Tarka - 25pts
29 - Gitana - 28pts
42 - Enigma - 32pts
15 - Coila - 47pts
41 - Fiona - 52pts
32 - Cariad - 52pts
39 - Hwyl - 55pts
33 - Starlight II - 61pts

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