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Shipwright 4 - sunday 7th December 2014

posted Dec 10, 2014, 4:21 PM by Admin hycnz   [ updated Dec 11, 2014, 11:50 AM ]

Race report from Nona (Bronny)

Last Sunday was one of the most thrilling races I have been involved with on Nona and my heart was beating pretty fast a few times, especially when rounding up into moored boats while I was driving! We had a few things not go to plan, like when hoisting the number one right on the start, it went up the stay having come disconnected from the hook at the bottom on the deck, I was the one that had hanked it on and was sure I had put the ring on to stop it doing that but my crewed eyed me with suspicion as I defended myself. While Denise was jumping around trying to catch the sail before it ended up at the top of the mast my thoughts were, shouldn’t we have someone taller doing that? John must have read my mind and went up to help. Luckily we recovered well and still won the start. Then the drag race began and although Firsty again gave us a head start they came past and disappeared into the distance pretty quickly. We tried to not let Eye Spy get away but they had made the better sail choice and just kept creeping away as we struggled with being overpowered. Another exciting day out on the water, I’m sure everyone would have had their moments with the blustery conditions. I am sporting some war wounds which are pretty impressive from falling into the cockpit to release the main. The bruising is extensive and black, I can’t provide a picture because of where the bruises are…..probably not appropriate. Thank you to all the people that make these races possible. Good luck team for the Golden Rivet on Saturday!!

Shipwright 4 race report from Eye Spy

A great day for a sail on Sunday with sun, wind and and a keen, but depleted crew, and Trevor away playing team building games with the Navy on Great Barrier Island. Three of us turned up; Mark as skipper, Gill as helm and JK as crew. We waited hopefully for John, but finally took to the trusty dinghy to motor out to Eye Spy and get ready to race. Mark's biggest concern was to see if the motor would work which it did, so all systems go and we rig with full main and No 2 genoa, which is much easier to handle when short handed.

Leaving the mooring without incident, we flex our racing muscles with a few test runs over the line, under just the main. Things look straightforward with only the two 88s vying for position. At the last minute things get exciting and Nona hoists her genoa up towards the top of the mast, we are late for the start cos we nearly did the same as Nona, and Firsty and Kentucky Woman arrive late and are pointing at our intended line, but phew they are on Port and OCS so have to keep clear of us. A feeling of deja vu appears as a re-run of the ladies race unfolds. Same course, same wind direction, some of the same boats, but a very different tide make for some challenging mark roundings as well as some shallow sneaking out of the tide.......! We soon creep through Nona's lee with both Mark on the main and JK on the genoa trimming constantly to keep the boat flat and running balanced and fast. What a difference a clean bum makes; no feeling of imminent broaching or heavy weather helm! We cream it to the first mark, clocking 8.5 knots and shutting Firsty out from pinching our wind and gaining buoy room. First round the first mark-yeah, but Firsty makes a smarter rounding and then streaks out from under our lee. Well done Craig cos I tried to sit on your wind but you were too fast!!!              

A long, close reach back to the ODM against the tide and we stay in touch with Firsty and start to extend our lead on both Nona and Kentucky Woman. We gybe round the mark and then the sh........t hits the fan. The genoa's top batten has a mind of its own and does a neat reverse wrap round the forestay and Mark has to abandon the main to unravel it. I luff up, bear away, luff again, tack and then gybe again and finally the b....g....r frees and the batten is safe.  A deep sigh of relief from us all as we head back on course with only a minute or so lost.              

The rest of the race passed without a hitch, and we crossed the line happy to complete the race without any more dramas. Yeah right (as the Tui advert says)!!!!! We put the donk on, lower the genoa, turn the music up (bad idea) and prepare to lower the main. As I luff up head to wind the boat doesn't feel as though the engine is helping me at all. We are close to stays and as we turn the music down we realize the engine has stopped! S......t, little room, no boat speed and the tide sweeping us towards moored boats. The boys fiddle with the engine and I sail Eye Spy to and fro on a beam reach so I have speed to tack round. We plan how we are going to pick up the mooring under main only, easy in theory with wind and tide together. And then the motor behaves and all returns to "normal". Just a slight technical hitch, after all what could possibly go wrong?

After a beer on the boat we climb into the dinghy and have another one at the club. Thank you Jo for doing BBQ and the wonderful hot dog, with delectable onions, I was starving after all those dramas. We were quite happy with our second place on corrected time, and pleased that Eye Spy had a creditable result. Thanks to Gary and Jos for manning the start and finish, and also taking some great photos.

Gybo Gill