It was a tale of two completely different weather patterns for the sailors competing this weekend in the Point Yacht Clubs races.
The first; day one of the Holburn Class Championships in the harbour on Saturday saw 20 dinghies out on the water. Race Officer for the day, Kevin Bingham set a windward leeward course for the boats as the light wind nudged just over 5knots in the first race and then as the afternoon progressed, dropped off.
As the light breeze slowly dissipated, Bingham eked out two races in total and then suspended racing as a breathless tranquillity surround all the boats. In the fleet, a gaggle of six oppies joined in the Saturday racing and relished the light conditions. For the more experienced campaigners, it was excruciatingly frustrating as the flukey wind dropped, and changed constantly making it challenging to be highly competitive in.
Sunday, the wind prediction was for the westerly to fill in in excess of 20knots, and it did. Race Officer for the Jonesy Sprints, Ron Pet hoisted the AP flag to notify the start was postponed, as he patiently waited for the breeze to arrive. After a half an hour delay, he got racing underway and as the small fleet of nine yachts started on a bit of a soldier's course down to the weather mark, the westerly arrived, gusting around the 20knots.
Wayne Smith, skipper of Crazy Diamond stated after the racing had finished, "It was wild but it was good! Had it blown a bit more, it would have been hectic!"
Smith and his crew took on catamaran Bandit, helmed by Sean Jones in the two windward leeward races. The two multihulls jostled positions throughout the afternoon, on the results Crazy Diamond took the first race 9 seconds ahead of Bandit and only 1 second separated them in the second race.
Smith, who misread the race instructions, was extremely lucky that he managed to finish seconds ahead of tough competitor, Jones. Instead of a downwind finish, Crazy Diamond rounded the finish mark to finish upwind. In the first race, he sailed through the finish line in the wrong direction, but tacked, changing direction and crossing the line. In the second race, it was far more dramatic as he rounded the yellow buoy and sailed behind the bridge boat. Realising his mistake, he charged towards the line, again crossing it in the wrong direction and then tacking up in-front of Bandit as she screamed down on the line. It was a photo finish, with the honours only just going to Crazy Diamond.
Dinghy racing commences this weekend with the continuation of the Holburn Class Championships, while offshore keelboat racing has a break until May, with bay racing taking place on Wednesdays.