Scow fleet Race Report : Merrydown Regatta 2019
Published 15:03 on 16 Sep 2019
Nine Scows came to the start line on Saturday including one visitor, Graham Bowen from Yarmouth SC.
In a variable force 3 wind from the north-east the race committee set a four-lap windward/leeward course, just outside the mouth of the Creek.
Graham Bowen had a good start, closely followed by Dare Barry. At the pin end several boats got themselves in a tangle, but eventually managed to start.
At the end of lap 4 it was almost a photo finish with Dare taking first place followed in quick succession by Bowen and Helen Gatehouse.
For race 2 the course was reconfigured as a three-lap triangle sausage. A clean start this time with places changing throughout. As the first lap finished Dare, Helen and Graham were first, second and third respectively.
Lap 2 swapped second and third place, but would Dare hold on to his second first place?
Unfortunately for him, Graham's winning streak from last year's Merrydown returned and he took first place with Dare and Helen second and third.
The final race of the day and the course was reconfigured to a trapezoidal, (square course, 3 laps). The wind was beginning to drop and the tide increase at the start, but all the competitors started and finished in a closely fought race with first to third places going to Graham, Dare and Helen.
Two more Scows joined the fleet for the second day. We knew this was going to be a challenging day wind-wise. The race officers anchored the committee boat just outside the mouth of the creek and waited for the wind to appear and after a half hour we seemed to have an almost steady force 2 from the SW and quickly went into the start sequence.
The course was a three-lap windward leeward and all 11 boats had a clean start in slack water. Mark Way made the windward mark first by taking the right hand side of the course and a little more tide. By the time the lead boat, (Graham taking his usual place), was approaching the leward mark on lap 2, the wind was disappearing and we took the decision to shorten to two laps. Results for this race were first Graham, second Dare and third James Humphries.
Race 5 was set to be a 'P' shaped course. With the wind back and looking like it might hold, the fleet had another clean start. All boats managed to get to the windward mark before the wind was turned off and the tide started to build. As some boats decided to retire and row back to the club the decision to abandon racing for the day was taken.
Overall results were
1. Graham Bowen (Yarmouth SC)
2. Dare Barry (RVYC)
3. Helen Gatehouse (RVYC)
Last updated 20:20 on 11 January 2020