Mixed weather for local sailors

FORFAR Sailing Club’s Tuesday evening meet saw cool and breezy weather but stalwarts Tony Cook and Graeme Knox in Lasers and Jim Green in a Solo looked out their thermals and were keen to get on the water.

In fact, so keen was Graeme that he decided to try an early capsize just to make sure he was well chilled.

All competitors were bang on the line at the start, Graeme flying away on the north side of the course. Tony was left behind, but by playing the wind-shifts just pipped Jim and Graeme at the first mark to establish a lead which he increased by a mastery of the wind-shifts on the windward legs.

Tony crossed the line first, with a good lead over the others, and on corrected time the order remained Tony first, Graeme second and Jim third.

Few contestants turned up for Sunday racing, possibly scared by heavier winds, and indeed the first race was postponed for about 15 minutes to allow a rain squall to pass.

Once underway, the Lasers of Graeme Knox leading Tony Cook were followed by David Smith in a reefed Enterprise into a decreasing westerly. Initially conditions favoured Graeme and he built a lead until the wind dropped to about force one to two, conditions where he is awful but Tony Cook is unmatched, and although Graeme kept him at bay off the wind and a good joust ensued, to windward it was no contest and Tony again took a good win followed by Graeme and David.

The second race provided more variable winds and David did well just to stay upright, while the Laser sailors didn’t and tallied three capsizes. That pair swapped the lead regularly in a very close battle and the race could have gone either way until, on the last lap, planing less than three boat lengths ahead of Tony, an old injury flared and Graeme capsized and was narrowly missed by Tony.

Graeme was too hurt to carry on, his race was over and he remained with his capsized dinghy to suffer the mixed emotions of indignity and relief when recovered by the club safety boat.

Tony’s tally of firsts remains solid this series.

Most notable sailor on the day was David who, although a relative newcomer and never challenging for lead points, turned up and sailed well enough to complete races in difficult circumstances.