Wind might have been too strong, but as it turned out, it was a good race. The on the water race officer chose a course zig zagging across the loch, then made an especially poor start in Catriona. Teal got the best of it at the shore end. Most of those who started on port tack, at the pin end, crossed ahead of Catriona.
There were strong gusts. On the approach to the Clynder shore, wind became very changeable in strength and direction. There were cat’s paws which pressed leeward decks under, only for boats to stand up again immediately afterwards. Those with less than 20 years experience of the Gareloch found it frustrating. Especially as the course included three windward marks on the Clynder shore.
It follows that there were three legs downwind. Not all boats set spinnakers on all the downwind legs. The strong gusts and changes of direction were perhaps more startling under spinnaker than when going to windward. The third sail certainly paid, though. Hermes kept ahead of Thalia by setting her spinnaker more often. Zephyrus and Athene were having their own race towards the back. Both had suffered on the approaches to the Clynder shore. On the final leg, downwind to the finish, Athene with her spinnaker thought she might catch the white sail Zephyrus. Not quite but there was only ten seconds in it at the line.
1 Catriona, 2 Teal, 3 Hermes, 4 Thalia, 5 Zephyrus, 6 Athene.