With the official Thursday Evening series ending a few weeks ago the keener sailors were still up for a sail on Thursdays, however last week the sea conspired against us but this week conditions looked very good when we first arrived at Gorleston. A lovely sunny evening with a warm F3-4 wind from the SW. The sea did look a big lumpy but the surf was small so launching was no problem.
Nine boats took to the water comprising of six classes with the Lasers the biggest fleet with three boats. It was nice to see Don back on the water after a lay off due to a cycling incident and sailing his 400 with daughter Hattie and they were joined by team ‘Phil & Will’ in the new club 400 giving it its first outing of the year.
‘El Commode’ and better half were kind enough to volunteer to run the racing and set a Windward -Leeward course. As we started race one the wind decided to ease and became very shifty, coming from the west at times. Despite this being an unofficial race series everyone was keen to get the prime position on the start which saw Tamsin (Laser) pushed out at the start. Steve, fresh from his trip to mix it with the Europes at Overy Staithe nailed the start and led the fleet up the beat, which had now became a little one sided. At the windward mark Dave (300) rounded first, closely followed by Don & Hattie and then the two Lasers of Joe and Keith. The downwind leg proved testing at times with light winds and lumpy sea. Apparently team Phil & Will were seen trawling the spiny at some point! With the wind shifting to the west the race team wisely shortened the course after two laps with Dave claiming line honours with Joe and Keith second and third.
The race team quickly readjusted the course for race two. Steve again nailed the start and initially led the fleet up the beat, it appears that his weekend trip has sharpened up his starting! Dave reached the windward mark first closely followed by Tamsin who had picked the best route up the beat to lead the other Lasers by some distance. Joe had the misfortune to suffer a kicker failure at start of the race and whilst upwind this was not such a problem downwind proved very tricky given the ‘sloppy’ sea conditions. Dave crossed the line first but Tamsin managed to hold her position on the water. On corrected time it was very close with Tamsin winning, Dave a few seconds behind and Steve a few more seconds behind.
As we sailed ashore the sun was setting but it was still quite warm. Several said the conditions were usual as the wind eased but the sea remained very ‘lumpy’. Those who were last to finish packing their boats away did so in darkness. As we sat around the table eating supper our ever enthusiastic Commodore was heard to say ‘what about one more Thursday!’, realistically we agreed daylight hours were now getting a challenge and none of us had navigation lights. Thanks to Phil and Lorna for giving up their sailing to man the RIB and let us enjoy another pleasant evening at Gorleston.