Fleet met by squally conditions
TWILIGHT RACING: Last Wednesday was always going to be interesting.
With continuous rain squalls and the promise of lightning storms on the horizon, the competitors who took part in the Whitsunday Sailing Club's weekly twilight race were in for an interesting time. As the fleet headed out to the starting line, the breeze was already moderating, but constantly blowing from the east.
As the first boats started, the rain squalls appeared to be to the north east of the course, which is exactly where the boats headed. First away was Endless Summer (Tony Mahood), the sole competitor in the Multihull division.
Five minutes later, it was the turn of the racing yachts, with QMS (John Galloway) winning the start, and the Doyle Sails Sponsored best start award, by the smallest of margins from Reignition (Charles Wallis) and Twister (Kevin Fogarty).
Again, the fleet headed out to the left of the course, toward the wet weather.
As the fleet headed to the first rounding buoy, the breeze veered to the right, to the disadvantage of those who sailed to the left.
By the time the fleet got to the first mark, Reignition held a small lead over QMS. As the fleet headed to the northern mark, the breeze continued to moderate and head right, veering around to the south west before gradually easing back to south east.
Hence the racing became a soldier's course, with boat following in a line.
This gave a win to Reignition from QMS and Twister, with the corrected time results showing no change.
For the boats in division 3, however, it was a different story, particularly on the first leg of the course. In this case, while many of the fleet headed left, High Tide (Shannan Hart) and Rossgo (Greg Hammon) sailed to the right hand side of the course, picking up the breeze as it shifted that way.
This gave them a huge advantage, and allowed them to round the first mark ahead of some of the division 1 and 2 boats.
Even after a false start, Rossgo was on the pace, although conditions later in the race meant that the fleet compressed as the race progressed. High Tide continued to lead the way, while Aquatarius (Tom Parker), Kameruka (Bob Beale) and Rossgo finished in close proximity.
Corrected time results gave the win to Rossgo from High Tide and Aquatarius.
Racing continues each Wednesday afternoon from 4.30pm.
Limited crewing positions are available at the club from 3pm.