Another southwesterly wind, veering to west, and as usual a long run out kept the fleet together, the fast boats being unable to pull away. Thanks first to MLSC Race Officer Tommy Mills, a one man Race Committee, for giving up his day as a competitor. Tommy set the longest course in the book, up to Wallet no. 3, and bar a fetch from WM2 to WM1 it was a run or a broad reach all the way out. A good fleet of 14 starters, missing the very fast ones such as ‘Quixotic’ and ‘McGregor IV’.
The wind was strongish, with quite a chop, and although some spinnaker rolling was observed, we didn’t see any broaches or roundups, and at the Wallet Spitway the fleet was still fairly together. The leg up to Wallet 3 was a dead run, and careful spinnaker handling was called for in the cross sea – some boats did not set one.
Speeds were high, and all boats were round the outer mark before the flood started, and turning back for the long beat to the North Eagle the faster boats had to plug the ebb for some time. This leg is always a difficult one, and the boats with the better windward ability and strategy started to open up some gaps. Some reefs went in, but at the back of the fleet, ‘Soprano’, ‘Carolanti’, and especially Maurice Mutimer’s ‘August Sky’, only two up and no spinnaker, under full mains, really got going.
The beat lasted all the way home, with ‘Caroline’ crossing the finish line first, sixteen minutes ahead of a close bunch of ‘Triton’, ‘Easi Rider’, and ‘Aloha’.
For the distance, quite a quick race, and so once again the fast boats were unable to save their time against the later finishers. Ken Rolland and George Allen’s ‘Carolanti’ took an excellent first, with ‘Soprano’ second, and ‘August Sky’ a very creditable third. Best of the faster boats was ‘Dan Dare’ in fourth.
In the IRC class, the order was as the last race: ‘Triton’, ‘Blue Moon’, and ‘Easi Rider’.
First – ‘Carolanti’ – Ken Rolland and George Allen – Stone SC
Second – ‘Soprano’ – Pat Murphy – Blackwater SC
Third – ‘August Sky’ – Maurice Mutimer – Blackwater SC
First – ‘Triton’ – Peter Copsey – Blackwater SC
Second – ‘Blue Moon’ – Richard Robarts – Marconi SC
Third – ‘Easi Rider’ – Martin Scarth – Blackwater SC