Conditions make for tough sailing for Exe SC crews
PUBLISHED: 12:35 10 August 2017 | UPDATED: 12:35 10 August 2017
And so the not so glorious summer weather goes on, writes Rex Frost.
Tuesday night cruiser racing was a bit breezy and the waves near the Safe Water mark had to be avoided quickly.
In the fast fleet, Red Fox (Colin Leach) took off along Pole sand to get clear, but Electra and Exeat went out to sea a little way and Electra was soon drawing ahead.
At the windward mark, Red Fox had already lost much ground and Jammin (Steve Best) was beginning to close in. Electra got lucky with the breeze and kept a good pace across to no.2 mark and then had a clean hoist to get surfing on the reach back to Safe water.
Coming in, Footloose and Jenesis had a good old tussle and spinnakers were close to their limit as luffing went on and on. In the distance the Club class were doing their best to overtake each other and in the gusts Speculator lost control and did a goodly broach, which was watched with great interest by crews all over.
On the sausage leg, the downwind angle was punishing for the asymmetrics and Electra held them off to the mark. Going along Pole sand Jammin was closing fast and at one minute to stop time, got to windward and into the lead, as Footloose slid up close astern into third.
Wednesday evening was grim for the dinghies with a fair breeze and steady rain. A small fleet ventured out and had a good, short race with club pro Tom Chapman getting near the front in his Laser radial, but Mike Way ended a poor evening by breaking his 500 ransom, when the rudder failed to kick up returning to the beach.
Meanwhile, the first Juniors Summer week had day after day of strong winds and rain. The aforesaid Tom kept it all going with a creative approach to keeping the 16 youngster on the water whenever possible and making use of his young instructors to keep it all moving.
Across the water, Anne Way was sailing in the RS500 Worlds and Paul Raven and Mark Swan were doing the RS400 Eurocup in Como, while Louis Siveyer was competing in the Topper Worlds in Britany.
Thursday night, cruisers had even more breeze and spinnakers were in short supply. The Club class seem to have agreed not to fly them at all and the Fast class held back a long time. In the big gusts and chop Electra got away well and held off Jenesis (Stuart Hills) till the second windward mark. Jenesis nearly hit the Wave buoy in their haste to overtake, but after that it was just a matter of time before Footloose (Chris Rhodes) stormed past. Chris had a long drawn out kite tangle and then having cleared it, took off down the reach.
Jenesis finally hoisted when they realised how fast Footloose was travelling, and it was then neck and neck to the finish.
And our boats doing the Fastnet have just set off. We wish them luck in this demanding event. For full results go to; www.exe-sailing-club.org