Sun 2nd Sep

There was a good strength of wind and it was possible to set a course which incorporated two true windward legs.  Its direction, however, was more than a little changeable.  Especially near to the Clynder shore.

Catriona got away well on the first windward leg to B, off Silvers.  Those who had sought to stay out of the flood tide and benefit from a back eddy on the Shandon shore suffered from a lighter wind.  Teal soon made her way over and from being behind, she found a streak of very good but local wind and rounded the mark first.  Her lead increased as Catriona was badly headed on the approach and had to make a couple of tacks.  Wind on the run to F, off Shandon Church, brought the two leaders close again,  The chasing group had a torrid time getting to B, by the time they rounded, they could not read the leader’s sail numbers.

Catriona got around the mark smartly, tacked and set off down the shore on the windward leg to C, off Clynder.  Teal covered and was to windward but a little behind.  In a series of headers, Catriona was on the look out for a chance to tack and cross so as to make her way to C.  That opportunity passes when an untidy spinnaker sheet caught a mooring and brought her to a standstill.  It seemed the race was over but such was the nature of the wind that Catrtiona found a line of pressure which eluded Teal and she looked comfortable.  Until the tables turned again.  Teal tacked to cover and found herself turning through 180 degrees.  Getting to C was trying.  Some of the wind visible on the water was blowing straight downwards.  Sails and the racing flag told different stories.  Teal was round first and had her spinnaker drawing strongly whilst Catriona sat with sails flapping.  The order changed again on the approach to the finish, Catriona passing to windward on localised air.  A moored boat was in the way of the favoured course.  Catriona went to windward of it, which should have been better but wasn’t.  Teal passed to leeward and took the finish by a whisker.

The pack, meanwhile, had an even less pleasant time at C.  Many of them arrived together.  Thia came out on top.  She had been strong throughout the race and Hermes, chasing hard, was able only to achieve fickle leads.  Dione got stuck to leeward of others at the start and never recovered.

1 Teal, 2 Catriona, 3 Thia, 4 Hermes, 5 Dione, 6 Thalia, 7 Athene, 8 Ceres.