Monday, December 10, 2012

J/122 Sailing Fast- Wins Hamble Series!

Hamble Winter Series- courtesy Paul Wyeth- pwpictures.comJ/111 J-DREAM & J/109 JAGERBOMB Take OD's
(Hamble, England)- Despite the combined efforts of a pessimistic forecast and ABP, who helpfully removed nearly all the racing marks in the Solent last week, boats racing in the final day of the Garmin Hamble Winter Series managed to squeeze in a race before the wind shut off completely.

Early morning saw 7-9 knots at the Bramble Bank and thick ice on decks. A short postponement accompanied a temporary lull in the breeze, but the race team was able to get all classes away in a 5-7 knot North-Westerly breeze and spring tide.  The flood tide meant that many classes were line shy in the light airs. After the start crews needed to keep their eyes out of the boat to locate areas of breeze - and to identify the large shifts, especially up the right hand side of the course.

Using inflatable marks instead of the missing racing marks, the race team set a series of windward-leeward courses, but were forced to shorten at the first leeward mark as the wind threatened to disappear completely. Nonetheless, some extremely close racing could be witnessed, even if it was in nerve-jangling slow motion. All in all, it was a beautiful day on the water, even if there was a lack of wind.

IRC 0 saw a closely fought series throughout the Winter Series and Dr Ivan Trotman's crew aboard their J/122 JOULOU hung on to their lead despite tallying a 5-4 in the last two races.  Their wonderful performance was attributed to good, solid sailing and avoiding enormous mistakes, something that plagued many of their competitors.  In the end, the JOLOU gang finished with just 13 pts total for the series, sufficient to win by four points!

Nick & Adam Munday's J/97 INDULJENCE started out the series very strong, leading the event until the last three races.  At that point, the INDULJENCE team was having a tough go of it, collecting a 4-6-4 at the end to finish second overall in the competitive IRC 3 Class by just five points.  Their J class peers were two J/92s, neither of whom managed to sail the entire series.  However, when the J/92s were sailing, it was clear that David & John Taylor's J-RONIMO and Andy Howe's BLACKJACK were able to fire off top five finishes and give the leaders a run for the money.

Tony Mack's McFLY won the last race in the J/111 class, but it was David and Kirsty Apthorp's J-DREAM that took the top spot overall with just 13 pts.  Cornel Riklin's JITTERBUG from France sailed an excellent series to finish second overall with 15 pts-- they will be a tough team to beat come spring-time when the French host their famous SPI OUEST France Regatta in April!  In the end, Tony's McFLY sailed incredibly well whenever they showed up on the race track and took third in class.  For having sailed just 6 of 10 races, Tony and the gang averaged just 1.5 pts per race- three 1sts and three 2nds.

In the J/109s, Owain Franks' JYNNAN TONNYX beat Paul Griffith's JAGERBOMB to take the day prize, but JAGERBOMB ended up taking the overall series by three points. Their nemesis all series long was Owain's team on JYNANN TONNYX, ultimately finishing second with 17 pts.  Finishing comfortably in third was David McLeman's OFFBEAT with 22 pts.  

Event Sailing Photographer Paul Wyeth took some brilliant photos of the entire Garmin Hamble Winter Series and many evocative images can be found on his website.   For more Hamble Winter Series sailing information