Feb 11


Despite incredibly strong winds all through Saturday, Sunday mercifully seemed calmer and the wind was doable for a downriver race.  With a lot of the usual suspects not able to come, I half thought we might not get enough people to sail but sure enough they eventually started to drift in.   It was good to see Simon Harrison who had brought an experienced Dinghy sailor friend with him, and they decided the Xenon was for them.  Sina paired up with Leo in her 420 and both Henry and Renato both went for radial sails on their Lasers.

I was a bit concerned that things were starting to go wrong when Jane pointed out I had flown the club flag the wrong way up……(uh oh)  but having put that right things started to improve!  Luckily for me we had an excellent safety boat team and many thanks to both Graham and Ray who both stepped in at the last minute to replace John and Polly who both reported in on the Saturday  as unwell – hope you’re both better.
So off they went with Renato with his impressive and usual turn of speed jumping into the lead.  By Wandsworth Bridge, his commanding lead had increased and the other three boats fought each other for second place.   Ray, Martin and I sped ahead to place the buoy for the finishing line right opposite the Battersea Park Buddha.  Martin our newest member had arrived at the start of the race, far too late to take part, so we swept him up in the safety boat to give him a flavour of a Downriver Race.
Renato went over the finish line in an impressive 34 minutes, followed 3 minutes later by a near photo finish between the 420 and the Xenon, with 1 second between them,  and Henry coming 4th over the line.  Corrected Time Renato 1st, Sina and Leo 2nd, Henry 3rd and Simon and Jason 4th.
There was sufficient wind to start Race 2 relatively quickly and once again Renato went off in the lead, hugging the Battersea shoreline until after Battersea Railway Bridge the wind died and there seemed to be a couple of helms standing up and willing their boats forward. (see photos). Eventually Renato hit some wind again and overtook a languishing Solo, part of the Ranelagh Race.  As we had to speed back to take the times at the finish we didn’t see the Xenon capsize our side of Putney Bridge and apparently getting stuck between a couple of parked boats.
Results of Race 2 were 1st Renato, 2nd Henry, 3rd Leo and Sina and 4th Simon and Jason, on corrected time
Overall results:  Renato 1st, Henry 2nd, 3rd Sina and Leo and 4th Simon and Jason
10 of us sat down to some lunch to say Au Renoir to Sina who is off across the Pond for 6 months for work.  Luckily she will be back occasionally in Between!  My thanks to Jane to all her invaluable help yesterday.