Cowes Week 2009, day 1

August 1, 2009

Prepare for the unexpected, Propper Preparation results in a 3rd place in RACE 1.   Both WINSOME and her crew had some minor or major hiccups before the start of 2009 Cowes Week.  Thursday WINSOME had her bottom wiped at Berthon’s Boatyard in Lymington. That is when we found that the anti-fouling was not completely dry when WINSOME was put in the water last time in Zaandam. The result; the shingles had left their fingerprints in the anti-fouling. Not a very racy bottom… WINSOME stayed two nights at Berthon’s intensive care, where everything was smoothed and repainted.   Thursday night Andy Cassell had an unpleasant experience with his own Cowes Corinthian Yacht Club. Late in the evening he slipped from the stairs, fell onto the pontoon and then slided into the water. It took a couple of men quit a while to get him out. After a night of observation in the local hospital, he was discharged. The staff thought they might have overlooked a fracture, but in the end it seems that he is completely bruised, but did not manage to break anything.  Due to the repairs at Berthon’s, Friday was our only training day. Harry was at the wheel, as Andy was obviously no available. Jan de Vries trimmed the main, Renze Runia and Joost Heikens trimmed the Genoa and the Spinakker, Boj managed the Pit, Pieter Joosse was at the mast and Floris Out had his first day on the bow. A lot of Spi-sets, Tacks, Gybes and other boat handling training followed. We started quiet well and improved during the nice and sunny day.  Who was to helm? It stilled looked like Andy was unable to helm, so Theun was flown in – a bit like a Rock-star – to fill in the gap.  Today we went out early to do some final practice rounds. 15 knots of SW-ly wind and some drizzle, real English weather, made our first start. Floris was well prepared, so he called the line. Timing was good, though our position was slightly below the field. With good boatspeed we went for the first mark, which was a fetch. We were about 12th boat around the first make. The whole fleet had gained from more tidal advantage then we had expected.   In the beat which followed, we made up about 8 places. SALVO, our major opponent from 2008 was first at the first mark. During the race she only gained on all the other boats.  It was beating towards the Island side of the Solent and a Run towards the Main land. In the end there was a long kite run towards the Ryde Middel Bank. A short fetch to Alpha to the finish completed the race.  We did well. Boat-speed and trimming were good. We kept up with our main opponents, mainly YES! (they won our class and the Blackgroup in 2005). Theun helmed as good as always. I believe we did quiet good on boathandeling, especially considering we never sailed with this complete crew before. The Result, A third place, 2:20 mins behind SALVO on corrected time and a minute behind YES!. There is really no reason why we should NOT keep up with them tomorrow. Here we come! Ciao, Boj   P.S. At the end of the day, we were informed that Andy is actually doing much better now, so we will hear from him. 

Post by Harry Heijst | August 1, 2009 |