Crew: Geoff, Peter, Eduardo, Grant, Albrecht, Murray.
Forecast: Southerly 20 knots. Becoming southeast 15 knots but 20 knots about the south coast this morning. Moderate sea, easing in the harbour in the morning. Cloudy with fair visibility in periods of rain developing late morning. High tide: 1133 hrs.
Our first race of the EBYMBC Winter Series sponsored by Barton Marine.
The Keelers Division race was to be Pursuit Start with Halo’s start time set at 1025 hrs. We cast off from Chaffers in about 18 kts of southerly and motor sailed round to Evans Bay to collect Murray and Albrecht. The course was set as #1 Special: Start – Somes – Ward – Falcon Shoals – Finish. All marks starboard rounding.
We rigged the No. 2 jib and medium spinnaker and positioned ourselves for the start. Positions were Grant on helm, Murray on mainsheet, Albrecht on bow, Eduardo and Peter on sail trim, with Geoff as skipper and tactician. We did a practice run at the line to time our approach to the start which we measured as 2.5 mins.
In spite of our calculations we got to the line early so had to steer left for a few seconds before straightening up and crossing the start on time. The spinnaker was hoisted without a hitch. Unfortunately the True Wind Speed (TWS) was dropping to around 12 kts and less. We saw both Grenadier and Coriander disappearing into the distance as we realised that we should have used the maxi kite. Too late now. By the time we rounded Somes we were about 3 mins behind Grenadier.
We changed the headsail from the No. 2 to the big No. 1 HW and started the upwind leg to Ward Island. Geoff kept an eye on the chartplotter to calculate the best course while minimising tacks and Grant steered a steady course as we passed Tamerlane and Coriander and got to within five boat lengths of Grenadier as we went round Ward Island.
We continued upwind to the Falcon Shoals Mark #10 in just one tack almost passing Grenadier who had to do a couple of tacks. We then hoisted the maxi spinnaker for the run to Pt Halswell but were unable to pass Grenadier who steadily pulled ahead of us and maintained their lead to cross the Evans Bay finish line 90 seconds in front of us. A thoroughly enjoyable duel!
RaceQs Replay: https://raceqs.com/regattas/83220