Last Saturday was a great day for sailing once the wind picked up mid-afternoon. Unfortunately that was an hour after the Batemans Bay Sailing Club Bay Cup race started, so the fleet had to put up with a light and fickle breeze for much of the race. An excellent fleet of 9 yachts ventured out. A welcome addition was the North Shore 33 “The Shed” whose skipper Ron Spelman has assembled a new crew for the coming season.
Race Officer Dave Magill and his trusty offsiders Terry Paton and Roger Rowe set a boat end favoured start aboard the committee boat “Clarence the Clocker”. The course was upwind to the Toll Gates mark followed by reaching legs to Wimbie Beach and hence to a laid mark near Square Head. The smaller Division 2 yachts used the Marine Park middle mark as their top mark.
In the Division 1 start “Accolade” (Lachlan Brown) grabbed the boat end start and jumped away to an early lead. The wily Andrew Bain aboard “Wishful Thinking” found a good wind lane on the right side of the course and sailed straight past. “Wishful” skilfully negotiated the Toll Gate Islands wind shadow to extend her lead. “Attitude” (Simon Byrne) and “Jembe” (Chris Thompson) got stuck in a windless void on the left side of the course, which is the traditionally favoured side. They just managed to overtake a sea turtle which was swimming around the north side of the Bay.
“North Star” (John Drummond) had a close battle with “Ghoster” (Dion Perrins) all the way around the course in conditions which didn’t really suit either boat. “Accolade” made up some ground on the reaches but “Wishful” was still ahead by a couple of minutes at the bottom mark where Dave Magill was obliged to shorten the course due to time constraints. “Attitude” came in a further 10 minutes back. In Division 2 Richard Dunne got “Vital Spark” moving well at times to put in a good gap on “Lollipop” (Deb Keeley).
On AMS calculations “Wishful” won from “Accolade” and “Attitude”. On PHS “North Star” came home with the proverbial wet sail to win from “Wishful Thinking” and “Accolade”. In Division 2 PHS “Vital Spark” won by 14 seconds from “Lollipop”. Full results are available on the BBSC website www.bbsc.org.au. The next BBSC keelboat race is on October 28th.