Here we are again looking back over a two race day at the Edinburgh Cup in Weymouth, the venue for the World Championships later in the year. I have already mentioned (yesterday) the superb set-up of the WPNSA and Fiona is doing an excellent job of bringing you the daily results and video’s. So my view is to give an insight of what happened “tactically” in the bay for all you fellow sailors who will be fortunate to participate here in September……
Race 3, Day 2. The line was set square to the wind with an axis of 215 degree’s and a line of 125 or 305 degree’s, depending on which way you measured it. The wind was set to build but currently around 7 kts. The majority of the fleet were bunched towards the Committee Boat on the start that got us away as the leeward right hand side of the beat had “paid” in the first race the day before. GBR 766 Robert Campbell (who won the race) told me he was on his own, as the leeward boat just over halfway down the line starting on starboard. That meant the entire fleet were between him and the Committee Boat. Within minutes of starting the wind increased and swept across the course from the left hand side. Giving boats who had continued out to sea a big gain. A Tanker moored on the left, forced some of those lead boats to tack early, but their advantage was already enough to comfortably cross the fleet.
The two downwind legs that followed were fairly even and the remaining beat actually paid to go right of centre, now that the new wind was established. The tide effect was minimal even though the current was now ebbing as high tide Portland was 10.00am. So the left side offered more pressure after the start. Rob Campbell told me it was the pressure and not the tide that gave him his winning advantage. Congratulations to him and his crew, Justin and Tom Waples.
Race 4, Day 2.. After two general recalls, race 4 of the Championship started with a Black Flag that kept the fleet well back and gave a clear start. GBR 761 Gavia Wilkinson-Cox made a fast start towards the PIN end above many boats who were over cautious and well back from the line. The line had again been set square, this time the wind was a little right at 225. Strength wise it was now up to around 9 kts and the tide was getting towards full ebb. I must just say that the tide is minimal, so we are talking maybe o.2 or 0.3 of a knot. The main concern was “pressure” and again there was more on the left.
GBR 761 did an excellent job leading in from the left and despite causing Ossie Simon Stewart (Crew of the overall leaders on “Bear”) to shout and hit his foredeck in frustration when Gavia tacked on their lane into the top mark, she sailed a great race. On both downwind legs they kept more or less to the centre and always took the right hand gate buoy which took them again to the left side of the upwind legs. Although their lead was reduced by the chasing “Bear”, Gavia with J.S. Ponce and Vicente’ Melo held on to take the gun.
So my friends, 4 races completed at this wonderful sailing venue. The wind is forecast to increase today so the overall title is still up for grabs. However, I have an idea that our current World Champion, Lawrie Smith is about to come out of the blocks at full speed today and cement his top position.
Higher, Faster, Longer……….. Stavros. (USA 310)…