Report kindly provided by Jens Sutter
Time for something nice!
A stiff easterly had failed yet to build up any chop; the sun was out – what more to ask for. Well, more boats would have been nice but then the season has just started and after all six turned out. The early season showed: the start was more on-the-minute than on-the-second but everyone got across with Catriona establishing a lead a bit down the line, Hermes and Teal, helmed in the absence of her skipper by Miriam Sutter, crossing a bit later but close to the mark. Thalia swiftly worked herself into second rounding A just behind Catriona with Thia and Hermes fighting for third place. Hoisting of Spinnakers was fittingly slow so early in the season. But then the wind seemed fresh enough to make good speed under two sails so Hermes and Teal omitted Spinnakers. That was most certainly a questionable decision as Ceres did catch up rounding C not far behind Teal.
On the way back to Y Thia suffered badly for an error of judgement when on port tack deciding late to duck Teal only to find herself now having to go behind Ceres as well. She did have to sail catch-up all afterwards. Weaving the gusts Teal meanwhile did slowly but surely work herself to windward of Ceres. There was time for a second round with Catriona in the lead, Thalia keeping her interested, Hermes defending third and Teal leading Ceres in a tight race. Thia was busy catching up.
With Ceres in hot pursuit there was no question of omitting the kite this time on Teal. Hermes left the third sail packed allowing her two pursuers to gain. That proved costly as a small hiccup with the jib on Hermes allowed Teal to get past on the way to the finish. Ceres hoped to benefit as well but tried in vain to snatch fourth. Finding a favourable streak of wind further towards the Shandon shore Teal did catch up but the leaders were too far in front for it to matter. Thia worked hard but Ceres proved elusive.
1. Catriona 2. Thalia 3. Teal 4. Hermes 5. Ceres 6. Thia