While strong winds cancelled sailing on the coast last Saturday, Nowra Community Sailing Club ran heat 16 of the Bomaderry Bowling Club point score and the Kel Campbell Trophy of the Day in light and variable winds. Nowra was parked under some large cumulus clouds so the hoped-for north-easter only made brief appearances.
(min cost $8)
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Boats ranged over the width of the river for the start as sailors tried to pick where the best breeze was, but it was Bill Jauncey who won the start from Merve Lotze, Wayne Norris, and Michael Fairbairn sailing his Finn splitting the fleet of Spirals. Peter Eslake started next, just a few seconds adrift of Michael and he was closely followed by Mike Wootten, Richard Pryor, David Porter on the sole Laser, and Mark McKinnon.
Picking the best breeze in the light conditions called for maximum concentration on the work against the tide to the east mark, with Michael eventually opening an expected lead in the faster Finn, from the Spirals of Bill, Wayne, Richard, Merve and Peter. Mike was just behind this gaggle of Spirals, with David and Mark behind him.
On the second lap the breeze became lighter and more patchy, and a mortified Michael saw his hard-won lead evaporate as he sailed into a hole (a place with no breeze) while the leading Spirals went elsewhere and sailed past him.
He spent the rest of the lap re-establishing his lead. Bill also went from peacock to feather duster, being passed by Wayne, Merve, Richard and Peter as they all ran him down on the run. It is supposed to be character building!
On the next lap Peter showed his class and made his move, getting to the front of the Spiral fleet. Unfortunately he aimed to extend his good efforts and try to chase down Michael by heading for the rock garden marked by the buoys and briefly ran aground, but that was enough to relegate him to the back of the pack, and there was not enough time to fully recover. David retired his Laser.
Michael finished first, nearly five minutes ahead of Merve with Wayne third home just 11 seconds behind him. Peter recovered from his grounding enough to finish fourth with Bill 14 seconds behind him, followed 49 seconds later by Richard, then Mike and Mark.
The Bomaderry Bowling Club Point Score is decided by personal handicaps and Wayne just pipped Merve for first with another eight seconds to Richard with Bill eleven seconds behind Richard. Peter was next by less than a minute, while Michael was left to rue his becalming in the second lap by coming sixth, with Mike seventh and Mark eighth.
Merve won the Kel Campbell Trophy of the Day for being first Spiral over the line, though some wags suggested Peter should have won it for his diligent charting of the shallows!
This Saturday Nowra Community Sailing Club will hold heat 11 of the Manildra Championship, heat 17 of the Bomaderry Bowling Club point score, and the Kel Campbell Trophy of the Day.
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