As part of Torbay week and up to 9 races Scheduled the 16 boats that had entered were in for a fantastic 3 days or racing. Upon launching on Saturday it was obvious most were nervous as we overlooked the racecourse from quite some altitude that was the Brixham Yacht Club. White water and a maze of moored boats made the day even more interesting.
Race 1 got underway in 20-‐25 knots of breeze and it was Paton who led at the top mark closely followed by Tom Offer and Chris Rashley. It was dangerously close by the bottom mark with Paton and Tom just inches apart as they push for the inside overlap. It was Offer who pulled out the distance upwind with Rashley making up distance with some superb tacking. However a rare capsize just before the finish meant Paton took the point from Rashley. Dylan Fletcher who sailing a Rocket finally managed to sail downwind to the finish to take 4th place.
Race 2: With the breeze still pumping it was Rashley who led from Start to Finish after his recent capsize he decided to teach us all a lesson. 49er Hotshot Dylan Fletcher showed some great upwind pace to take 2nd just ahead of Jason Russell. Paton came in 4th after a couple of sketchy tacks. Lightweight Mike Cooke sailed consistently to finish in 5th.
Race 3: A slight drop in the wind but with local ferries tearing through the course just added a little extra excitement to the race as you had to survive sailing through its wake at 25 knots! It was Rashley who won the race with his consistent boat handling ahead of Russell who hiked hard for the last race of the day. Paton out sailed Fletcher for 3rd.Unfortunately quite a few boats retired due to not feeling comfortable sailing in the chop it was an early bath for Mike Cooke.
It was a leisurely evening with most enjoying the clubs atmospheric Jazz band trying to recover from this day’s epic sailing!
The following morning the wind was blowing offshore @ 8-‐12 Knots at the start of Race 4. Paton decided to shoot for a port hand flyer convinced the wind would shift to the right only to find out the was a bad call with Phillippe Oligario choosing to follow. Fletcher and Rashley led to the left of the course and lifted all the way into mark 1 ahead of Ricky “high flyer” Tagg and Russell. Paton pulled out of the race with equipment issues just ahead of a significant drop in pressure that saw Ricky Tagg foil around the top 2 boats before a splash landing to finish the race low riding just 55 seconds inside the time limit! Mike Cook sailed a good race to cross in 4th place.
Race 5 saw marginal foiling conditions ahead of weather front, which produced a difficult wave set for everybody. For sure there were plenty on nosedives both up and downwind by everybody. It was almost a case of who stayed dry for the longest. It was Rashley who sailed conservatively around the course to finish quite some distance in front of Fletcher who managed to pass Paton on a wind shift up the final beat. Paul Hayden Crossed the line in a respectable 6th place ahead of Phillippe Oligario.
Race 6 got underway in very light conditions with plenty of low riding at the start testing peoples patience before a decent breeze came in all over the course to allow for the days final race to be awesome. Dylan Fletcher who had a few issues with his Rocket design boat missed the start of the race It was Rashley showing his outrageous speed off the line after Paton taught him a lesson on starting Rashley decided to put the bow down and speed upwind at 17 knots forcing Paton into an early tack. A close top mark rounding by Tagg and Russell meant they both pushed the limits downhill to close the gap on Paton who eventually went for a sea water bath in front of spectators on the local racetrack ferry. However a fuming Paton pulled back those two extra points to finish in 2nd.
Day 3 and a beautiful morning it was with marginal winds meant Dylan Fletcher and Ben Paton were talking the talk onshore over what was looking to be the ultimate showdown for 2nd place overall as they head to the race course just 1 point apart. The race officer managed to get a race underway with Rashley, Tagg & Paton foiling off the line. Rashley deciding gybing upwind would give him the only chance of staying on the foils instead of a tack. A smug Tagg watched as he crash-landed. It was Paton who stayed on the foils the longest however the wind dropped and it was the boats that did not foil at all who led the race. No surprise the race was abandoned and a move in race area was imminent. For some reason we restarted Race 7 in 4 Knots of wind and it was Dylan who had the pace with a bow that slices through the water. Paton who at the top mark decided low riding isnʼt what the class is about and went in for an ice cream. It was Fletcher who won the race followed by Russell and Rashley. The biggest surprise off the day was to see Patrick Cunningham making it to the racecourse.
All in all a great challenging event and we would like to thank all staff and volunteers for their efforts.