For the first start the fleet was slightly back from the start line, taking a conservative approach in the strong winds gusting to well over 25 kts. Upwind was hard work and the fleet was well spread out by the time they reached the windward buoy. The first few boats, including JChi at the front, hoisted their spinnakers without too much trouble, immediately throwing themselves into a plane. Many of other boats played it conservatively sailing main & jib wing-on-wing and still surfing like mad down the enormous waves. Those that lived by the mantra of “go big, or go home” and were able to control their boats had an absolute epic time!
JChi reveled in the tough conditions, taking a win in the first race. They followed up that commanding performance with three more top three results in races 2-4 placing her in a solid position going into day 2. Javelin’s first race was a disappointment (6th) but she was able to rectify that in impressive style with three wins to follow, placing her one point behind JChi going into Day 2. The other boats performing well towards the front of the fleet were Tigrina, Jasmine and Joss, although Tigrina was forced to retire from race 4 losing her series discard on Day 1, placing her under pressure for Day 2.
Day 2 saw lighter winds, which meant the crews were able to focus more on strategy and less on keeping themselves upright. The big change in weather conditions also reflected in the results, with each race won by a different boat. Of the eventual top 5 boats only Tigrina was unable to pull of a race win on Day 2, although her results of 3-5-3-2 were enough to squeeze into 3rd place overall beating Jasmine by just 1 point after discards. Taking 2nd overall was Javelin, her aggressiveness caught up to her with an OCS in the final race, meaning she had to count her 7th in race 7 instead of using it as a throw-out. Finally, pulling off a win in the last race, to top off an excellent Championships, was JChi. For more Hong Kong YC J/80 season sailing information