Crew: Geoff, Ken, Lorna, Paul, Robin
Forecast: : Variable 5 knots. Southerly 15 knots developing this morning, and rising to 20 knots about the south coast for a time late this morning and early afternoon. Easing to southerly 10 knots everywhere this evening. Moderate sea in the south for a time late this morning and early afternoon. Cloudy periods, and fair visibility in occasional rain from late morning.
Robin and Lorna joined Geoff on Halo at Chaffers Marina and we cast off from the berth at 1030 hrs. Wind had been steadily increasing since early morning and as we were unsure which genoa to we would be using in the race we motor sailed round to Evans Bay with just the mainsail up. At the clubhouse we signed on for the race and learned that it would be course No. 7 which is: Start – 10 (Falcon Shoal) – 12 (Wards Is.) – Finish, with a 5 min. warning for the start at 1230 hrs. Paul and Ken joined us and we cast off ready for the start. Positions were allocated as Paul on bow, Robin on mainsheet, Ken on helm, Lorna on keys and trimmer, Geoff on bow and trimming.
The wind had come up to just under 20 kts so we prepared the No. 2 Genoa and the medium Spinnaker. We started with just the mainsail initially and hoisted the Spinnaker for the down wind run to Point Halswell. A great start with only 2 boats ahead of us initially. By the time we reached Pt Halswell a couple of the faster boats had passed us and we then turned south into the head wind tacking towards Falcon Shoal. Had a rather close call with Coriander and Grenadier as we tacked in front of them!
Rounded Falcon Shoals light at 1322 hrs and then headed down wind on a broad reach towards Ward Island neck and neck with our rival Coriander. Doug yelled out at us that we needed to clean out bottom! We rounded mark No. 12 at 1336 hrs with inches to spare cutting in front of Grenadier who was taking a wide turn. On the beam reach back to Evans Bay Grenadier was able to gradually pass us again. We then beat our way into Evans Bay with four tacks before getting to the finish line just 10 seconds ahead of Coriander. (The finish line was positioned just after Greta Point between the Race Committee Boat Pania on our starboard and the end finishing mark on our port.
Results for the race (see below) were Halo 5th on handicap and 5th on line. A great race and we didn’t even notice the crappy weather. I did get some post-race feedback at the clubhouse that it was looking like Halo was under powered with just the No. 2 Genoa, so we may have done better with a No. 1. Also we should get our bottom cleaned before the next race.