11 Mothies braved the most reasonable forecast anyone has seen at QM for a long time. We arrived to find it blowing dogs off chains but due to the forecast drop after lunch and non freezing temperatures no-one was too phased.
With the first boats going off at midday and the Moths not due to start until 75 minutes later we all sat back to watch the race unfold which is a most bizarre thing to do! Got to feel sorry for the slower boats chugging around for all that time while we are ashore drinking tea...
Our startline proved quite entertaining as we had boats crossing on two different downwind legs while we were milling around and with the general tactics being to stay the hell out of trouble off we went.
With the wind having abated by our start, Alex Adams and I played a good game of cat and mouse as we sailed into and out of puffs pulling away then getting caught again. This was going to be the order of the day, although I gave Alex a good lead at one point when I missed a mark out due to following an MPS who obviously had no idea where he was going leading me astray (I never know where I'm going either...). We both spent a good leg lowriding on the second lap while the wind gods stopped for tea, but once they kicked back in we got the hammer down pulling through the fleet nicely. I had to stop for a break a couple of times too, having my mainsheet block break off the boom and need a lashing (figuratively and literally) and my pushrod bottle screw undoing itself while I wasn't looking meaning another nice dip and cool down while I reassembled on the water!
The final lap was a good one and with time ticking away we both tried to pull through as much of the fleet as possible getting around two big chunks of boats on two seperate legs. I pulled through to 10th in the end getting past 10 or so boats on the last reach and unfortunately left Alex just behind them in 25th.
Further back in the fleet DJ Edwards had a good race coming in 77th, Olivier Vidal in 80th, Geoff Carveth and Tim Penfold duking it out for 100th and 101st respectively, Martin Fear in 111th, Doug Pybus in 118th with an overtightened wand bolt causing some pretty special launch positions, Gareth Davies in 130th, Jon Peats came in 184th. Tom Offer had a nightmare, launching to a KA special with cams popping off, starting late and then taking half the tiller extension with him after missing the toestraps post tack... Overall was taken by the 14 of Roger Gilbert.
I always enjoy this event and this year was a good one with my personal best result being a mid teens in a N12, coming away with the first foiler trophy and first in class, although they are both pretty much the same thing now the 600 fleet has vanished. If anyone has any ideas what to do with 1.4L of Vodka when you don't drink, please let me know.
Next event is the Steve Nicholson Race on Saturday the 29th of Jan. Meanwhile Fotoboat and Ian Roman have both posted up some galleries from the event already...