Showing posts from October, 2014

Last race of 2014

26 Oct 2014 The last race today. Four cruisers turned out for the final race of the Len Nolan Handicap series. I’ve been leading the series up till now - we’ve had lots of races cancelled due to weather and lack of turnout, only 2 races have been run up to today, and with my two 3rd place results I was in the lead. I knew the other guys weren’t going to let me get away with that though and sure enough they were there today! An 1100 start and wind forecast F4-5, Stuart and I debated putting a reef in to the mainsail but Stuart’s a laser sailor and  is always tweaking the mainsheet and we decided we’d go with full main and just let it go if we were over-pressed. Once outside the river we nearly changed our minds but settled on unrolling about 2/3rds of the genoa and leaving the main full. The swell was a little high and the wind was at the top end of F4. The gate start procedure has the lead boat drawing a line behind himself to a fixed mark for 2 minutes as we cross behind hi

The Owers Race

4 Oct 2014 The Owers Buoy is a south cardinal mark about 10nm south of Littlehampton, past Selsey Bill into the English Channel. The Owers race is an annual event, a long distance cruiser race, and unlike most races there is no defined start time. The trick is to get to Owers and back via Pagham as quick as you can, each skipper has to look at the tide and wind conditions and decide for himself when to set off. Usually you'd want to go round Owers just as the tidal current turns so you get the tide helping you both ways.Knowing your own boat speed and taking the weather into account you decide when to set off. I was with Tim and Debbie on their boat Johanna. I have mentioned her many times before as a race rival. She's about the same as Elsa on handicap but is 26' long and much heavier. One day I will take Elsa to the Owers but this was not the weekend to do that. The conditions were a bit challenging with winds F4-F6 and forecast to change direction in the middle