It was another evening of light air. Race Officer Reay Mackay chose a course intended for lower strength of wind but incorporating 3 rounding marks and 4 trips across the Gareloch. Some competitors thought we should be lucky to finish but it turned out well.
Catriona, uncharacteristically, got the best start at the heavily biassed pin end of the line. Teal, second, suffered badly from air disturbed by the boat in front. Teal took a tack across the loch to clear her air and do something different. It brought her back into contention and she rounded the windward mark in third place just behind Thalia. Thalia and Teal took each other high on the downwind leg to G, off Shandon. For a time that looked faster than the direct route which Catriona had taken. They faded after a while.
Ancient charts used to say ‘here be dragons’ beyond the edge of the known world. It was the same at the C mark, a fetch from G. Ebb tide was fierce at C and the mark had very little wind around it. Catriona saw Pipers in front struggling and headed up to avoid the trap. Not enough. She was obliged to tack against the tide in light air and spent some time creeping up tide of the mark. Thalia, approaching in better air, did not absorb the evidence. She had a torrid time rounding C and dropped two places. Teal was now firmly in second for the spinnaker reach to the finish.
Thalia’s trouble was not over. Approaching the line, she was blanketed by a late running Sonar and was demoted to last by Ceres.
1 Catriona, 2 Teal, 3 Hermes, 4 Ceres, 5 Thalia.