Batemans Bay Sailing Club's keelboat fleet is getting back to racing in strange and unfamiliar circumstances. Not only have COVID precautions curtailed pre and post race socialising, but the club has been missing the reliable race management skills of Dave Magill, who passed away during the winter. Dave's race management platform, the Bertram 25 "Clarence the Clocker" has seemingly gone out in sympathy and is getting a new motor.
Last Saturday Andrew Bain and Terry Paton ventured forth in Andrew's runabout to start the first coastal race of the season, the Marine Park race. 7 boats headed out on a lovely day for sailing. From a start at the Marine Park middle mark, the yachts headed upwind to the Marine Park north mark off North Head, back around the southern tip of the Tollgates to the middle mark, downwind to the Marine Park south mark off Black Rock then around the outside of the Tollgates to a finish line off Caseys Beach.
"Moonmist" (Tony Sutton) got the best start with a well timed run. "Wishful Thinking" (Simon Dunlop) just squeaked past at the top mark. Her crew got the kite up quickly to lead around the Tollgates. "Accolade" (Lachlan Brown) rounded inside "Moonmist" at the Tollgates and was making ground on "Wishful" when her spinnaker tore right across making it an expensive afternoon for the skipper. On the last reaching leg to the finish "Wishful" sailed too high above the proper course and then had to do a slow square run to the finish, allowing "Accolade" past for line honours. "Moonmist" also pipped "Wishful" at the line and was close enough to "Accolade" to win on AMS.
The standout performance of the day was from "Xanthia" (James Gardiner" which finished just behind the leading trio to win easily on PHS. Ron Spelman and his crew aboard "The Shed" had a cruisey afternoon while Peter Peterson had his hands full single handing "Avior" around the course. In Division 2 "Hobo" (Peter Withington) had a convincing win.