A glorious, warm, autumn evening greeted the Lake Jindabyne Sailing Club sailors on Wednesday March 19. Seven mono-hulls and five catamarans rigged up to compete in heat 16 of the 2013/14 Twilight series. John Byrne and John Lord took the start boat out early to set an appropriate course in a light to moderate Easterly breeze.
The fleet bunched up at the start boat end of the line. With one minute to go, a couple of lasers jumped the start and had to return to the fleet. After much jostling, the fleet set off on the first windward work to the Quarry mark. Nick Deacon had a good start on his Hobie 17 leading the cats and most of the mono-hulls. Tim Symons was late leaving the beach and had to try to catch the other cats. Several bots reached the Quarry mark together.
Phil Daly and Nick Kirshner on the Flying Fifteen were on the inside running and hit the mark, rounded it again and hit it again, third time lucky and they rounded the first mark. They were then in the unusual position of trying to catch all of the lasers.
Graeme Bradbury, Jason Abbott and Damian Goninan moved to the front of the Lasers and battled for the lead. Martin Van Weel, Ross Tattersall and Kerry McGaw were close behind on their Laser Radials. The leading lasers had started their last leg when the two Johns shortened the race. The sailors quickly changed course and headed towards the finish line. Some of the sailors had to back track to reach the finish line.
Graeme crossed the finish line first, followed by Jason and Martin. Damian had passed the line, so had to return and zipped around the finish line buoy just two seconds in front of Phil and Nick K. They were followed by Ross and Kerry. The handicap corrected times gave the win to Martin by 2 seconds from Graeme, followed by Jason, Ross, Kerry, Phil and Damian.
Meanwhile in the cat's race, Nick D had built up a handy lead followed by Barry Dennis, Tim, Randy Wieman and Errol Hanlon on the Hobie 16 and Steve Ashe on Nick Kennedy's Hobie 17. Tim slowly caught up to and passed Barry, then set off after Nick D. Nick had a huge lead by the second triangle lap, but missed the Mountain mark by an enormous amount. By the time he turned and sailed back to the mark, the others had all caught up to him.
Tim then snuck past Nick D on the long leg back to the Bay mark and led the cats around that mark by a small margin. He then noticed the shortened course flag flying on the start boat and set off towards the finish line. The three following cats tacked off to find more breeze and headed towards the Quarry mark.
This caused Nick D, Barry and Randy to pass by the finish line while Tim crossed it five minutes ahead of Randy. Nick D eventually reached the finish line and bumped into the start boat while crossing the line. Barry took a couple of goes to cross the line in the correct direction. Steve completed the cat fleet as he was a bit behind the others on his first sail on a Hobie 17. Tim took the win on handicap corrected times followed by Randy, Barry Nick D and Steve.
A warm sunny afternoon greeted the four sailors who rigged their boats to compete in the second last heat of the season on Saturday 22nd March. A Starboard rounding lap around Lion & Cub Islands was set and changed to a Port rounding course just before the start due to a major change in wind direction. The wind then changed back and the sailors set off on a long run / reach to the Church Rocks buoy.
A long windward work followed with Tim Symons and his Hobie 17 searching for the Mountain mark on the glary water. Graeme Bradbury led the three lasers followed closely by Ross Tattersall and Kerry McGaw. The light to medium strength breeze kept shifting and changing direction which forced the sailors to concentrate and make many tacks. Tim led the small fleet back to the beach followed by Graeme, Ross and Kerry.
A second race was set on the regular inside course and going the opposite direction s for race one. Tim again led the lasers around the course. The wind again changed constantly in direction and strength throughout the race. The fleet finished in the same order as in race one. Ross took the yardstick corrected time win closely from Graeme, Kerry and Tim.
There are only two Wednesday evening twilight races left this season and the start time has been moved forward to 5.30 pm to allow for the shorter Autumn days.