Fox’s Yacht Sales were delighted to have had eighteen entries for the fifteenth Beneteau Owners Weekend, in aid of the RNLI. For the week leading up to the 2nd of August the weather forecasters had had several changes of mind. The long range forecasts had predicted a lot of rain due throughout the day with absolutely no wind. It was a great relief to all that the day stayed completely dry! In the event the day started out with a little cloud over the horizon and once the sun burnt off the cloud it evolved into a beautiful day with some great breeze kicking in for the afternoon.
Eventually the Committee Boat arrived on station and wisely postponed the start to let the fitful breeze steady and the radio traffic die down.
The first start was a relatively well contested affair, “Shavonne” opting for the pin end for a bit of tidal shelter whilst the rest of the fleet were evenly spread and “Bigwig2” winning the Committee boat end.
A long foul tide beat to Pennyhole spread the fleet out considerably but with some light and long downwind legs, some of the non-spinnaker bigger boats struggled a bit.
Once again the First 21’s and 25’s had a rare old battle around their course with “Loup de Mer” sailing really well to get the gun.
By the time the stragglers had finished the wind had filled in to a solid 18knots and the sun was shining. A fair tide, downwind start for the second race had the potential to be a messy situation but the fleet behaved really well with no one jumping the gun. That said, a boom-committee boat interface was narrowly avoided (you know who you are!).
A bunched fleet at the first turning mark, the Harwich Shelf meant there were a few calls for water before the fleet tramped off up the The Stour. With the wind set fair for the race back to the line at the RHYC the fleet nearly caught the Race Officer unaware such was the pace of their return. However, we counted them out and counted them back in again!
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