Sunday, September 24, 2006

Turkey Bowl Competitors Gobbled up by Fog

Saturday's Turkey Bowl was a success despite rain and fog. 13 boats came out to compete from BYC, PCYC, and the RStLYC. I had the honour of serving on race committee with David Speak and Michael Paynter. We somehow received compliments on the course set which was a nice surprise. David went to windward towing a mark to be set, and before long disappeared in the fog. After a while, we heard his voice crackle over the radio, "How's this?" It was quite amusing considering we had no idea how far out he was, nor whether his course continued to be directly to windward. Essentially we were dependent on David's good blind judgement, and good it was. Watching the boats on a returning leg we could see competitors appear out of the fog flying wing-on-wing, so we knew we were lined up pretty well. A few competitors noted finding the drop marks through the mist was a bit of a hunting game!

All of the Etchells took the top honours with David Lowther being the first one. The Etchells were all pretty tightly grouped and tactically duking it out. Then on the last leg, David jibed away and took advantage of a good lift, as he crossed the line with a good margin over the remaining fleet. Bravo David. I'm not certain but I believe David Covo was also on board, and I didn't catch the third.

The first PHRF III boat over the line was Don Osborne and Nick Van Haeften in their Shark, followed by Peter Rahn and his son, also in a Shark. Don and Nick had a good timely start, and immediately got a tack in to get on the favoured long tack, and clear their air from the Etchells. Then they disappeared into the mist! There were some bigger boats racing too, Ben Waring sailed his Grampian 26 with his son, and a Mirage 30 and a large C&C mixed it up too. Beverly Gilbertson expertly guided her smaller Tanzer 22 through the thick part of the fleet

Back at the club, everyone gobbled up hot turkey sandwiches and we raffled off a bunch of turkeys. The higher your finish the more tickets you got, so the best had an edge, but there were many to go around. It was really a great afternoon despite the wet weather, and getting the sailors from different clubs together to chat post-race was a good thing.

Lastly, on the club deck, PCYC invited BYC sailors to their "Pas De Deux" Distance Pursuit race with RStLYC, and BYC reciprocated by inviting PCYC competitors to their Chili Bowl next week. I love it!