Seven 6 metre class competitors joined their colleagues from the Dragon 95 fleet on the
lake yesterday for a good day’s racing in almost ideal conditions for both fleets. The Dragon
95’s raced first over the windward/ leeward gated course set by Keith Simmons and Steve
Watts. Whilst this course configuration is normal for the 95’s it is not normal for the 6M but
was the only course that they could set on the day due to wind direction.
The first race was won by Steve Watts with the Ravenna designed 30 which one could say is
the scratch boat, at the moment. That is not to say he gets it all his own way, race 2 showed
this as when tacking off the bankside he had nowhere to go against the boats to windward
of him. In trying to avoid a bow on contact he picked up another boat which dumped him
after a penalty turn to mid fleet. The 6’s are big boats and it is very easy to forget how much
room they need and the way they carry way due to their weight. Indeed, in the early races
the quietness of the lake was broken at times by the tap/click when the 95’s came together
in their races and the very different crunch /bang noise when the 6’s came together in
theirs! After several calls of “ouch that has got to hurt” the RO John Kiff made several calls
to the competitors to desist from making a point by hitting each other in port and starboard
incidents, but to avoid the contacts instead!
Tim Nicholas with the dolphin designed Gretel made several very good starts rounding the
first mark in the lead. He showed very good downwind speed but could not hold off the
chasing boats going to windward. Dain O’Driscoll racing the newly acquired DRSKY (58) took
a race win as did Graeme Harris with his TIAS after Steve (30) did an unexpected fast spin
going to windward in the penultimate race. The DRSKY (57) which is normally reliable
suffered from a jib issue requiring the attention of both TEAM VARKER members on the
launching platform. The cause of the problem and speed of their PITSTOPS was no doubt the
subject of evaluation in the TEAM DEBRIEF over tea later! More teams, team colours, now
there is a thought!
Thanks to the race team for their efforts in providing a good day’s racing for all. The next 6M
Series Race will be next Saturday (2 nd of March)
See you on the start line.