· There is that saying “the early bird etc…” and that was very true for a fleet of 15 boats that sailed on the morning of Sunday 15th. The advertised start time was 09:00hrs and at that time there was absolutely now wind at all. After a patient wait of 45minutes an 5kt Easterly set in and stayed at exactly that for the next two hours we were on the water. Worth getting up at 6am for sailing like that.
· Finally after some very windy sailing days Saturday 7th was one of the best for the season. We sailed Club Champs round 7 and 8 in a wind that averaged 8kts with gusts mostly just 13kts. Very steady but with some sneaky shifts across the river to test the experts. A fleet of 13 boats which included 3 sunbursts each with a LTS member as crew. The junior fleet of four were all P-class plus one opti with a LTS sailor.
· The fence is up on the adjacent section. Just the gates to go and then we can reshuffle our Club fleet.
· The five hour event run Saturday 22nd was excitement for a few and disappointment for many. The race had to be cancelled after two hours because the wind got to an average of 22kts with a gust of 27kts. This was after the first hour was sailed in an average of 6kts. In the second hour we had several capsize (one twice) and a rudder and tiller broken. It was a good call to cancel as the “fun” was gone. With a fleet of ten sunbursts there was the potential for a lot of people to have a go over the five hours but in the end the wind ruled.
· For the weekend 15/16th our Club members were sailing at four different venues. There was a regular Club sailing day where a fleet of five raced in 15kts. There was a sunburst, a Europe, a laser and two splash’s with the laser winning both races. At Timaru our Club members took part in the age group regatta. On the Estuary there was the SI sunburst champs. I hear at least one boat will have an interesting tale to tell including some damage. The Club team that sailed at the Lake Mahinapua regatta consisted of one opti, three firebugs and one sunburst. Also the RO was a WSC member so we were well represented. On Saturday we got the occasional 4kt gust with big calm spots between so we managed only three races all on a short course. The wind was so light that when the horn went for the start of the last junior race they all continued jumping of the wharf which was much more fun. Sunday was different and they got two senior races away in strong winds, which broke gear, before cancelling.
· Racing on Saturday 8th looked like being a re-run of the previous Sunday. An hour before start time the wind was averaging 20kts so Bret de Their ran a whiteboard coaching clinic on making the best of the wind. The wind then moderated and we were able to start 50 minutes late and so ran just the one race which gave us a winner for the two trophies and the ladies race. It was cold with a S’West blowing at 14kts.
· The forecast for sailing on Sunday 2nd was almost right, it was a Northerly but the strength was an extra 10kts plus. Five seniors turned up to sail and only two were willing to rig and sail when the average was 18kts gusting to 24kts. Goes without saying that it was not suitable for the four juniors who turned up either. There was not a quorum so sailing was cancelled. While it did ease a bit after we headed home, it was only going to be a fun day for a particular generation (not mine).
· Our second mid-week evening sailing event on Tuesday 28th saw an even better fleet than the first. There were 20 boats on the water with five in the junior fleet. The wind was about as perfect as it can get with a steady 9kts from the East with gusts never exceeding 13kts. Even in such benign conditions there was an unexpected capsize. Just shows why sailing is such fun.
· About our travelling sailors. Dave Davies took out second place in the South Island Europe Champs and Daniel Smith competed in the zephyr champs rounds 4 & 5.
· Once again our sailing day on Sunday 25th started with some of the best sailing conditions. Four races were run for a time on the water of two and a half hours. An interesting course was set and the wind for all but the last five minutes was from the S’East averaging 6kts. On the third leg of the last race the wind went around to the West and increased to 16kts. As the fleet rounded the last mark a gust of 28kts hit suddenly and flattened several. Luckily the junior fleet had already finished and it gave the support boat crew some rescues on an otherwise boring day. The fleet was 12 seniors and 5 juniors.
· The Club Champs rounds 5 and 6 were sailed in the best conditions this season. The wind averaged 8kts with gusts to 13kts from the East-S’East. Juniors with 11 sailors again outnumbered the eight senior sailors. Add in the LTS crew with Viking, an opti and the frostbite we had a fleet of 22 boats.
· Mid-week evening sailing on Tuesday 14th saw a fleet of 17 boats on the water, about evenly divided between senior and junior. We were not too sure how the wind would hold so the RO set a short course with multiple laps . We got three starts in two hours of racing and the wind did hold at an average of 10kts from the East. Even in this light wind there were several capsizes. The best thing about this event was the buzz in the clubrooms afterwards.
· Brief sailing report for Saturday 11th January. There were six juniors and two seniors who left the ramp to start. One sunburst broke a tiller on exiting the creek. The Viking did not finish the second race after breaking a tiller also. Three of the juniors retired for various reasons leaving only three juniors to finish both races. Well done Cameron. For most of the race the wind averaged 16-18kts with gusts 20-25kts from the North.
· The power pole and wires are no longer across the end of the adjacent section. The wires are now underground.
· From all Club members our thanks to Hamish Monk who has put in a great effort on the adjacent section. He has put in the sump, filled and levelled the section, built the ramp and also filled in the holes in the rigging area near the creek.
· Over the weekend of 23rd-24th November four of our junior Club members sailed in the Graham Mander Trophy regatta. With several good placings Dominic was the regatta winner.
· Over the weekend 30Nov-01Dec Club members took a small fleet (13) of their yachts across on a visit to the Pigeon Bay Boating Club, accompanied by our new support boat. As predicted the wind was brisk. On Saturday only seniors sailed. There are some classic capsize stories to be told. On Sunday sailing was cancelled with the wind being above brisk.