Pursuit race to Gordons Bay
30 March 2010 | Simons Town
We have completed in our first Family race on Shamrock. I dont really enjoy the round the cans stuff as it doesn't suit either the boat or myself. However I do enjoy the medium long distance races and two weeks ago we have a 21 Nautical mile pursuit race to Gordons Bay on the other side of False Bay. I was looking forward to it as there were two similar boats entered which both have a relaxed attitude to racing. The morning broke and looked ok with little or no wind and then it started to rain. My job was to prepare the boat while my wife organised the grub and our daughter with all of her associated baggage.
I prepared the boat and put an extra 20 litres of diesel on board just in case and went home to fetch the gang. With the car stuffed to the gills, we set off to the yacht club. We loaded everything on board and released ourselves from the dock and headed out into the bay. The wind was light and wind the main set and the engine running I manouvered the yacht and started to head up to the line. My plan was to release a small amount of Genoa before the start and then once under way open her up fully. I understood there to be a one minute warning blast but that turned out to be incorrect and the one minute balst was the start. Anyway we released the genny and headed out across the line 2nd in our small group. We were behind Silhouette in crossing the line and ahead of Exhale. Vernie in the lead boat just pulled off into the distance and nothing I did could stop them pulling away. Exhale and ourselves were more evenly matched and we swapped positions about three times going across the bay. I managed to point a bit higher than them which paid off as we pulled ahead across the bay. As we were heading into Gordons Bay the wind came up a bit and we were over powered but as we had two boats hot on our heels, I left all the canvas up and strugged to steer the boat in towards GB. A little bit closer to the finish line and we were in the shelter of a headland and the wind dropped down to a gentle breeze as we coasted over the line.
We had a party at the club and were received very well by the GBYC members. During the night the wind came up again and worsened throughout the morning. I was hesitant to set out into a gale but eventually did and I also took along the crew of another boat as they didnt fancy the high seas.
\We flew back home in the highest winds and roughest seas I have ever sailed in but all seven of us made it back in one piece. More than could be said for soem of my equipment. damage included two small rips in the Genoa (repaired) and a wrecked stackpack and also my deck light fell off...
All in the name of fun. There are two more races this weekend..now if only I could get a crew....