Barrel Race Report
Published 20:34 on 25 Oct 2016
BARREL RACE 23 October 2016.
20 boats were tempted to have a go at the Barrel Race, only 12 boats completed it due the challenging conditions. First to start was the Cruiser fleet, a clean start by Selah (a Parker 27 complete with a wind generator, tea pot and a full set of floral cushions), with Kev and Marney Gibson and a secret weapon called Hilary on board - this ensured they gave themselves the best chance of getting their hands on a trophy. The cruisers were sent across to the mainland shore, so took the full force of a freshening Easterly wind, even heavily reefed, they showed us plenty of bottom as they ploughed through a 1 meter chop.
The dinghy fleet all started together 5 minutes later. Race officer Nigel Talbot ably assisted by Richard Rae set an elongated trapezoid course, which gave 2 hairy reaches a long surf downhill, and a tough beat. The challenge was to complete as many laps as possible in an hour. The well drilled lasers got off to a fine start, followed by some very ambitious Optimists, a Feva, a Dart Sprint 15, RS300, Pico, a feisty Mirror and finally a Squib.
The Dart (Simon Giles) rapidly showed the rest of the fleet who the lead boat was going to be, and by completing four laps (fastest time 12:35) also finished the most number of laps. The attrition rate on the first lap was high, two Optimists a Pico and the RS300 came to grief keeping the club RIBS (Howard Knowles and Steve Sheridan in Vic 7 and Steve Moles and Chris Rickman in Vic 1) busy picking up the pieces. Through the line on the first lap after the Dart came Tom White, Harry White and Alex Downer in the Lasers, then the Squib – Phil Russell and Ian Morgan choosing not to fly the Spinnaker on the downwind leg. It was then the Mirror (fastest lap time 20:32) helmed by Simon, but clearly being skippered by Daisy Evans. The Laser of Charlie White, being chased by Zoe Irons and Florrie Webb in the Feva. The girls only had one capsize in the race and looked totally on top of the conditions. The only thing that might have suffered was the conversation (occasionally). It was then the turn of Arthur Farley in the Optimist – one arm baling like a machine and the other managing tiller and mainsheet whilst hanging over the side straining to keep the boat flat. Fiercely determined Arthur managed to do 2 laps finishing with 2 minutes and 20 seconds to spare before the hour cut off. Next the laser of Kieron Blamey and son Cameron in an Optimist. Dad showing a variety of novel ways to capsize. Cameron impressively keeping cool, sailing competently and heading in the right direction ensuring he was one of only two optimists who managed to finish. Finally the Laser of Matt Bamber, the combination of being hugely over canvassed and totally underweight for the conditions meant Matt managed to swim his way round most of the course, completing one lap in 38:34.
Second through the line on the second lap was the Squib, weight and stability showing its advantage, followed by Harry, then Tom this time, Alex, Charlie, Daisy, Zoe and Florrie followed by finally the forever baling Arthur.
Somewhere on the horizon the Cruiser 'fleet' headed for the line, enjoying the now close to 2 meter swell and 25 knot gusts.
After the handicap had been applied it was Simon in the Dart who came out on top, winning the Burt's Barrel and a keg of beer. (He then kindly donated it to the Laying Up Supper Raffle in aid of the Open Day for those with Disabilities). Second was Tom White and Third Harry White.
The Cruiser taking line honours, and first prize overall was Selah. The full results will be on the website.
Last updated 09:05 on 14 August 2018