The annual F15 team racing event, and efforts to AVOID being awarded the Grotty Potty, started today at 14.30
The forecast was for some great winds, but the risk of very strong gusts passing through. Deja Vu?
Fifteen Fifteens have turned up to contest the Team Racing and Open Meeting event. The wind is relatively light in the bay, considering the forecast. However, the ‘cats paws’ flying across the lake in all directions are suggestive of a very drunk and malicious moggy. There is a competitive fleet with Steve Goacher making the trip from Windermere and nine visitors journeying west from Derwent Reservoir.
The first race has started on time and Race Officer ‘Round the Lake’ Toggle has justified his soubriquet. Fifteen Fifteens were last seen disappearing southwards through the gap. Hopefully they would reappear at some point.
It was some time before the fleet returned, as the wind at the other end of the lake had eased, failing to live up to it’s forecast ferocity. John Hardisty and Roger Errington made excellent use of the conditions to lead the fleet home in the first race with Steve Goacher and Richard Rigg in second place. Simon Longstaff and Jon Denwood from the home club were third.
As the hoped for breeze had failed to materialise at the other end of the lake, the second race was sailed in the bay. Normal service was resumed, with Steve Goacher winning from Neil Platt and Ian Smith, from Bass. Simon Longstaff was again third with John Hardisty only managing fourth.
Steve Goacher had shown his shrewdness onshore before racing began by selecting Simon Longstaff and Neil Platt as his accomplices in the team racing event, and they comfortably topped the standings overnight.
Sunday morning dawned reluctantly, grey and dreary, with the strong overnight winds having eased. The Race Officer took the fleet out for two races back to back in a moderate SE breeze. As the start approached watery sun threatened to break through. Close racing was enjoyed through out the fleet with Steve Goacher and Richard Rigg again taking the honours from Rod Huddleston and Chris Tew, with John Hardisty and Roger Errington in third.
Although he had wrapped up the series Steve Goacher elected to stay out and contest the second race, although it could have been argued that he didn’t really need the practice!
In the event a really close race ensued with Neil Platt and Ian Smith edging out Goacher and Rigg to take second overall. John Hardisty and Roger Errington took third place in the race, which secured them third overall.
The ‘Mercenary Bass Tards’ lead by Steve Goacher and Richard Rigg took the honours in the Team Racing event by a very comfortable margin.
The prudent timing of the Race Officer was applauded by all when, a short time after racing had finished, the wind increased to Force Stupid, in line with what had been threatened all weekend.
In addition to an open meeting, the Flying 15s are grouped together in teams of three, the results weighted by Ian Preston and an overall position is calculated. Overnight the leaders were the Mercenary Bass Tards, and they held on to their lead to take the series. The Grotty Potty did not get a look in this year – who has mislaid it (or left it under their bed?!).
Looking at the photo of the winning team, was this something Steve Goacher can do in his sleep?
In club racing, on Saturday, the final two races in the October series were sailed. Scumper won both, and Mike/Eric took 2nd. Ethan/Robin Dawson finished 4th in the first race which was sufficient to win the series overall with Jim Christie 2nd.
On Sunday, William/Lezli-Ann took the lead and broke clear from the fleet. With Scumper suffering from some minor gear failure he gave in with a lap to go, leaving Banter Phil to chase William (in between screams of glee as he was planing), but on handicap William held his lead, with Phil 2nd and Peter Ballard 3rd.
For the afternoon pennant race, the high winds which had been forecast all weekend finally arrived. The fleet were sent to the top of the lake but heavy swell and a capsize by William/Lezli-Ann led to retirement of the whole fleet!