The forecast spoke of 20 plus knots with gusts well over 30 knots. That was accurate but wind was from the east so that there was some shelter in the lee of the Shandon shore. The on the water Race Officer checked wind towards Clynder and realised wind further out in the loch was too strong to race to windward. A course up and down the shore was chosen. Notwithstanding the lack of a windward leg, it was a good race. Warm sunshine too.
Five Garelochs came to the start, including Teal with guest helm Thad Burr and Lens Sutter crewing. Hermes reefed. It seemed to make no difference to boat speed.
There were lulls where a spinnaker would have worked well, even with wind forward of the mast. There were also ‘cat’s paws’ which, if not tiger’s were definitely not those of a domestic mog. A Scottish wild cat, perhaps. Constant playing of the main sheet was needed. The direction of gusts was unpredictable and the pattern on the water was not a reliable indicator. Rapid trimming of the main sheet was needed.
Thad did not make the best start, that went to Catriona who kept her lead throughout. Teal insinuated herself past Hermes and Thia, but could not catch Thalia. It might have been different with a more prompt start.
1 Catriona, 2 Thalia, 3 Teal, 4 Thia, 5 Hermes.