Wind was diminishing all the time as we sailed to the starting area. There was a marked lull at the starting gun, which caught out many. Not as much as it caught out Pipers, though. Their start is 5 minutes before ours, most of them had not crossed the line at our starting signal.
Iris and Zoe were there promptly, the rest not. The first leg, a beat to A, off the club, was a nerve wracking affair. There were patches of pressure, but it was never possible to predict their location. The tide was flooding, so inshore was better from that point of view but there were more ripples further out. Iris went in and rounded first. Zoe went out and for a while looked slow. She was on starboard when she caught a port tack Catriona and rounded second.
A similar dilemma faced the contestants on the downwind leg to G, on the Shandon shore. Zoe passed Iris on an outrageous streak of wind. Zephyrus passed Catriona.
At the G mark, there were Pipers to confuse the issue. Zoe got round cleanly and was away. Zephyrus suffered the most, being outside a gaggle of them. By the time Catriona had been able to tack and set off towards the finish, Hermes was in the mix. These two spent some time side by side until Catriona was able to edge ahead. Many chose to go further out in search of better wind. It paid for Zoe but the others found the adverse tide too much.
1 Zoe, 2 Catriona, 3 Hermes, 4 Zephyrus, 5 Ceres, 6 Iris, 7 Thalia, 8 Thia.