Dinghy Racing – Wednesday June 21

Another Wednesday, another light breeze from the south, and 7 dinghies set out on a figure-of-eight course involving a long run from 2 down to 6. Fears of nothing more than a “Henry’s Shirt” evening were quickly dispelled by the arrival of Tim Hartley, but alas he was on a brownie points mission, escorting Mrs H on a romantic walk to meet the midges around the pond. So the baton was picked up manfully by Colin Vickerman. An impressive “will he, won’t he” launch caught him floundering in the bottom of the boat but he managed, eventually, to reach the start line before stalling and getting caught in irons, a fatal error in the Supernova. (Because I’ve done it!) You would think he would have seen that coming, given the visions he has been having this week.
Shortly after the starting signal the boats crossed the line, Kevin Holmes (Streaker) hoping to control the race by calling for water on the bank by the clubhouse, but with Chris Holden and Mike Palmer inside he lost out on the following tack as the Supernovae came across him on starboard. And that, dear Reader, was that. The race proceeded in a funereal procession as Mike extended his lead, taking the race ahead of Kevin (Chris’s knees could no longer cope and he dropped out as the wind eased on the 2nd lap) followed by Richard Redman. Bill Holms’ rapid improvement in form continued, finishing with 2 boats behind him: keep it up Bill!
And so to the pub, where Colin confidently reported the latest news from Bermuda where, evidently, the Kiwis had a 6-1 lead, despite only 4 races having taken place. If you see a man offering pegs and heather around the club’s grounds please treat him kindly, but do escort him safely off the premises. Thank you to OD Tony Burnett for shortening the race when he did, and to the rescue crew for standing by.
Author – Mike Palmer

PS – This brings the 1st Wednesday Night Series to a conclusion. Overall Series results can be found here. Congratulations to the winner Kevin Holmes and to the galant runner up, Mike Palmer, our racing correspondent.

Young People’s Saturday Sailing – June 17

Yippee. We were able to sail this Saturday but only just as it was Force 4 touching 5. This week, Stuart brought an assistant race officer with him. Welcome Malcolm. Please come again. Emma in the Pico won the first race followed by Ian with daughter Libby in the Topaz. Hannah was looking for a crew so Harry was volunteered. Harry has just joined the club with his family. They came to PTBO. This was his first sail at Halifax so Hannah was given dire warnings not to tip him in. To no avail though. I saw the Topaz lying like a great white shark in the middle of the pond. Hannah and Harry finished 3rd, and Phil and Nicola finished 4th. I do suspect they missed the start though. This was Thomas’s first time out this year in his Topper so Steve his Dad was encouraging him to just reach up and down and get used to the boat again. Tom, you did well considering the wind but please do not sail too close to the bank. We were concerned if you go too close you would damage your boat!! During tea break we learn’t how to sail away from the shore with an onshore wind. Revenge happened in the second race as Hannah with Harry in the front fended off sister Emma in the Pico and won. There was only 35 seconds between them. 3rd was Phil and Nicola. By now, George had got his catamaran out and took new member Marcus out with him and came 4th. Well done to all of you.
Many thanks as always to the safety boat crew, Henry (he of the fancy shirt), George( not sure what George was wearing for fancy dress yesterday) and John ( who was in the competition for the best fancy shirt yesterday but unfortunately our roving reporter was not there ). And Stuart and Malcolm who set the courses. During Saturday morning and part of the afternoon Kevin, myself and Emma were finishing off the June Sailing course for Nathan and Wayne Lucas. Look out for them and please make them welcome ( I know you will). See you next week wind allowing.
Happy Sailing, Sue

Wednesday night racing – June 14

Wednesday’s light wind forecast was enough to deter the twin-hulls, so a gentlemen’s race ensued, with 6 boats lining up, 3 Supernovae, and a brace each of Lasers and Streakers. Richard Redman’s challenge ended at the 1 minute signal when, trying to sort out mainsheet issues, he had no option but to capsize to avoid a head-on with Yours Truly, on starboard but engrossed in setting my watch rather than watching proceedings. Richard was eventually recovered, joined and the race and finished strongly in last place, displacing Bill Holms and Andrew Swift who was well clear. The Supernovae battled hard throughout, Chris Holden staying ahead from start to finish, despite my late challenge in the shifty wind and begging the OD to rescind the shorten course call (I would have got him!!) but all 3 – Colin Vickerman enjoying the light air – finished within 10 seconds, although the group was unable to break away from Kevin Holmes who took the race comfortably.
Thank you to the race crew for attending.
Author – Mike Palmer

Young People’s Saturday Sailing Update

There is no report for Young People’s Sailing for June 10th as we cancelled due to a forecast of gusts of 30 mph. See you all next week (wind allowing).
Can I pass on a thank you from Hannah Cable for your support in buying her buns at Push the Boat Out. She made £38.50p. Hannah is going on an expedition to India to help local disadvantaged children, as well as a trek to the tea plantations. As part of her trip she has to raise £2500 by doing individual and team fund raising activities. Your support helped.
Regards Sue Lamb

No racing report – Wednesday June 7

Well, 2 helms arrived, prepared – that is with kit, if not with thermal gear – to sail, but in the light of gales through the day that had not abated the way they were expected to, racing was abandoned, and the assembled crew adjourned to The Delvers to discuss what might have been, as well as events in Bermuda.
Whilst others were re-living what happened on Sunday your Hon. Sec. spotted an opening, noting slyly how Tim Holden’s Bo (that’s his dog – Ed) was entirely biddable when offered something to eat. And dropping a crisp for which the dog darted, after a successful dry run that Tim failed to spot, Tony stepped back by a well-judged metre and, dropping another tit-bit, watched with an evil expression as the dog leapt, and Tim’s arm followed suit, almost de-seating him from the bar stool.
Thank you to the race crew for turning up, and to John Lamb for his efforts in repairing the controls on the brown safety boat.
Author – Mike Palmer

Young People’s Sailing – June 3

Last Saturday, Young People’s Sailing was quite quiet with most of our Young People still on Holiday. As usual, the wind was not quiet, it being onshore making it difficult for launching and touching force 4 at times. Stephen and Henry looked after the safety boat whilst Fergus and his Dad Robert raced each other. Fergus in his Laser winning both races, carefully watched by Robin our OD for the afternoon.
Ellie ( Kevin B’s granddaughter) came to sail with us. She has sailed before but it was a little too windy for her. So, I was taken for a nice little sail up and down the pond in the front of a Topper.
A perspective member Marcus along with his Dad came for a taster. Ian kindly took him out in the Topaz giving him a true taster including a nice swim. He came back smiling and they are now going to join the club.
Meanwhile Agie came up and took a Topper out. It is very difficult getting her to come back in for tea break as she is so keen to sail. Eventually the safety boat got her to return to the shore. Steve and Henry were desperate for a break and a drink of tea.
After tea break everyone went out again. Agie did try to take the jetty with her on the way out but we soon resolved that. Don’t worry Agie, at some time in their sailing career everyone has a go in destroying the jetty. No harm done. We need to work on onshore winds.
Many thanks as always to the safety boat crew this week, Stephen and Henry, and Robin for arranging the races. And Ian for the taster.
See you all next week.

Race Report – Sunday June 4

Sunday’s “players” arrived expecting a gentle F2/F3 to find that the training course that morning had been abandoned due to howling gales, and some residual sailboards enjoying a final blast before the wind reduced to nearer what had been predicted. 11 dinghies lined up at the start, including newcomer Chris Kennedy’s Laser, with the Holden Contenders putting on an America’s Cup-style match racing display in preparation for European and World Series events. Much of the pre-race changing room banter, verging on distasteful, centred upon the method of entry into harnesses, and whether the bouncing technique could be the subject of Police investigation, but in the end it was felt that the “consenting adults” rule applies. (I really don’t know why I allow this stuff – Ed)
In R1 Ben Holden edged ahead of Uncle Tim, the Contenders rounding 30 secs/lap faster than Kevin Holmes (Streaker) could manage in 3rd position.
R2 proved to be the highlight. Ignoring the Contenders – final placings reversed this time after swapping the lead many times – the main action was to be found in the chasing pack. Your Correspondent’s “Start of the Season” was marred by an alleged OCS infringement that saw him return to the start line and battle through the fleet to mix it with Kevin Holmes and with Tim Hartley (Radial). With these 3 hammering down towards No8 on a dead run Kevin overcooked his cheeky gybe and went over, under and out, while MP dropped his tiller, allowing a gloating Tim to sail away. Justice did prevail, however, although Henry’s superb dive of last week was completely eclipsed by Tim’s swallow dive as he executed a perfect death roll below No4! His mission to see just how fast downwind a Laser can go remains unfulfilled. Mike Palmer (Supernova) finished 3rd, just ahead of the Radial of Squire Kevin Brennan, sailing sensibly in flat cap, carpet slippers and pipe-smoking, playing tortoise and hare. Meanwhile as the race ended we had a little boy-on-buoy action (thanks for that line, Mr Hartley) as Brendan Briggs fell for No2 and Dave Walker mounted No1 and brought him back to shore for a cup of tea and a heartfelt chat.
The final race saw 10 boats start and 1 DNF: presumably Mrs Holden had set a strict time for Ben to be home, or it would have been early to bed with no tea. A relatively straightforward race saw Tim Holden home first, followed by Tim Hartley and Kevin Holmes who had enjoyed a close-fought battle on the water all the way round.
Thank you to all who sailed and who managed the racing. Series results can be found here.
Author – Mike Palmer

Race Report – Wednesday May 31

Wednesday evening’s forecast (F2 gusting F3) deterred all of the multihulls, leaving a field of 6 to brave the conditions. The biggest dilemma was what to wear: that perennial mid-season balance between cold water and hot sticky wet or dry suits, or the Vickerman approach of shorts and T-shirt, clearly confident of no mishaps.
Helped by a shift immediately after the start line Mike Palmer (Supernova) managed to skirt the jetty en-route to No1, whilst almost all the remainder had to put in 2 tacks to reach the mark. This allowed Mike to head off into the distance and in clean and light air he set a pace that even the Streakers could not match, while the 2 Contenders were always going to struggle to get on the plane. The wind held for most of the race, but on the penultimate leg the field was bunched and trailing by 4 minutes on the water, and praying for it to be abandoned, until a passing helicopter created enough turbulence to help them home.
The results were
1st Mike Palmer (Supernova)
2nd Kevin Holmes (Streaker)
3rd Colin Vickerman (Supernova)
Thank you to all who partook and who managed the racing. Full series results available here.

Author – MP

Young People’s Sailing – Saturday May 27

Last Saturday, instead of the usual Young People’s sailing, some of us went to Craven Sailing club. It was the 2nd Junior Invitational Racing Day. The event was unfortunately not very well supported with only Craven and Denholme and us. I think it was something to do with the weather forecast.
We had interesting weather with the first race raging a gale with horrendous gusts. Fergus did a wonderful classic ‘death roll’ in his Laser with full sail on it. Points scored, 10. The second race we changed the sail on the laser to a radial and guess what, the wind dropped. The 3rd race was shortened due to the most spectacular thunderstorm I have seen for a long time. There was talk of abandoning the meeting but whilst enjoying ice lollys, we decided to sit it out. It did eventually pass and we started the 4th race but after the storm comes the calm. No wind. The last race was abandoned.
The good news is that Marcus in his Pico won the event, with a young man called Ben from Denholme 2nd and Laurie in a Topper came third. Many thanks to Craven for running this event and thanks to Tim Hartley for lending us his inflatable and engine. Charles used this as a coaching boat and another safety boat which was much appreciated by Craven.
Back to normal on this coming Saturday 3rd June. Young People’s sailing starts at 12.00
Happy Sailing