Cervantes Race 4/33 resp. 14/97

May 5, 2013

On the morning of the day preceding our first Race, about which Joost Heikens wrote already in his last blog, we had still 37 competitors but on the start only, well what means “only”, 34. In total 97 competitors in all classes.

Wind predictions gave 20-22 knots gusting 24-26 for the start, dying to 6-8 gusting 10-12 at the end of Saturday.

When we left the box at around 08.30 we all guessed we would sail with spinnaker II followed by Genoa II once having passed No Mans Land Fort. At the very last moment -I was inside trying to get my NASA instruments to do what I wanted them to do- the  decision was taken to use spinnaker III followed by Genoa III.

The crew consisted of Peter Morton, Leen, Floris, Joost N, Herman and myself. Since Floris and Joost N arrived in Cowes already in Cowes on Thursday -probably to reaffirm the girls on the Island that they were still kicking and alive- Winsome was in a perfect condition. She was in a perfect condition indeed. About the girls they did not say a word. hm hm.

Peter choose for a start close to the Outer Limit South Bramble Buoy. We made a good start and we passed the startline some 8 seconds after the gun. Soon after the start we got spinaker III up but we had some troubles to keep the boat under control, wind 24-25 knots, gusts upto 31.

Soon after the start we observed Foggy Dew to burst out of her surrounding group of boats with  top speeds of 12 knots (all AIS information). In spite of very good speeds for Winsome of over 10 knots we could do nothing to see Foggy Dew disappear.

Foggy Dew passed the Forts with an advance of 0,6 Nm followed by Roxanne, Fastrack IX, Zonpuka, Rainmaker and Ingwe.

We hoisted our spinnaker on portside and during the run to the Forts we decided to replace the spinnaker III by Genoa III. During the entire Race of 95 Nm we never made any tack!

It became a rat race. No chance for any tactical moves, just going as fast as we could all more or less in one line. It went so fast that we reached the finish at nearly 100 Nm in just under 12 hours.

Only in the last 6 hours we changed our Genoa III for Genoa I and in the last 3 hours we hoisted spinnaker II. At this stage we made a mistake by not changing earlier to a larger Genoa. We were all the time concentrated on the moment we could hoist a spinnaker but we did not think of an alternative i.e. to start setting a larger Genoa. Mea culpa. It has certainly cost us one place in the score.

It was very cold on the water, especially in the  night, but the food of our famous cooks Floris and Joost N, gave sufficient compensation.

Knowing that Foggy Dew could not be reached any more, not even on rating since there is only a 1,7% difference in rating under IRC, I hoped for some time that we would be within the first three boats. I never did see Tusen Takk II nor Jubilon on AIS. Sophie will be happy to see three first places for the French with Winsome in 4th place. The first English boat Fastrack IX became 5th.

On top of this Gery Trentesaux won his usual IRC Overall price.

We are not extremely happy with this result, considering the very good condition of Winsome steering like an aircraft, but content. We had to disappoint the RORC editor who wrote such big words about our appetite for another year’s championship. Anyhow we congratulate Foggy Dew with her good race in her home territory Le Havre.

We returned right after having finished and came back in Cowes on Sunday in the early afternoon,

Taking care of the sails and cleaning the boats was our priority after arrival. Look at the scenery on our pontoon.

Next race will be Myth of Malham Race starting Saturday 25th of May.

Post by Harry Heijst | May 5, 2013 |

1 Comment

  1. Don’t be disappointed, Harry….I know you secretly only came fourth to lull the others into a false sense of security for the next race 😉

    Well done x

    by Angela | 06 May 2013 | 11:31