Thursday, April 6, 2017

Chilly, Windy Warsash Springs- Act III

J/88s sailing off start (Warsash, England)- For many, it was “chilled champagne” sailing on day three of the Helly Hansen Warsash Spring Series.  The series is at its midpoint and the overall results are beginning to take shape as the front-runners and riders start to become apparent.

The third Sunday of the Series was more like a classic Spring Series day; cold with sunshine and reasonable winds from the East. A brave crew member was spotted in IRC2 with bare red legs dangling below very short shorts on the start line- what a hero (a.k.a. the south side of a north-facing donkey)!

In the combined White Group, three races were held, and although the wind moved right for the third race, by judicious moving of marks the committee managed to avoid having to stop and re-run the race. The J/70s appeared to pull away from the J/80s due to downwind speed. Series Race Officer Peter Knight said, “it looked like a day of sun, fun, and spray for the competitors (except for that person in short shorts)!”

J/70s sailing Warsash Spring seriesAfter the three races, Graham Clapp’s J/70 JEEPSTER leads their class with just 9 pts in six races for a somewhat commanding lead at this juncture.  Sitting in second is Steve Venables’ INJUNCTION with 18 pts and in third position is David Mcleman’s OFFBEAT with 35 pts.

The other White Group J/class are the J/80s.  Like they have in the past, it looks like Jon Powell’s BETTY is beginning to collect an awful lot of 1sts and 2nds, in fact tossing a 2nd place to have an enormous lead with just 6 pts net!  Tied on second place are Mike Lewis’ JESTER and Terry O’Neill’s AQUA-J, each with 11 pts.

The Black Group start line was near E Knoll with the first beat set to a removable buoy on the mainland shore. True wind was around 18 knots, varying from 14 to 21, but with relatively flat water, which led to some debate amongst the J/109s as to the correct headsail to use.

Favoring the committee boat end, the J/109s had a clean start with some boats opting for No. 3 headsails and others for No. 2s.  In the end, the No 2 proved to be the best option as the breeze faded on the third beat.

J/109 sailing upwind at Warsash Spring seriesOn the first beat it seemed to pay to go left and pick up the shifts on the mainland shore - JIRAFFE and JAYGO were first round the windward mark followed by JYNNAN TONNYX. On the next two downwind legs JYNNAN TONNYX went through JAYGO, then took JIRAFFE on the next beat, where it paid to go up the middle, using the tail of Bramble Bank to reduce tide effect.

Ultimately, Owain Franks’ JYNNAN TONNYX held the lead to win from Simon Perry’s JIRAFFE, with Mike & Susie Yates’ JAYGO third place. JYNNAN TONNYX now leads the series in the J/109 class with three bullets!  Second is JAYGO with a 2-2-3 for 7 pts and third is JIRAFFE with a 4-3-2 for 9 pts.

On the combined IRC1 and 2 starts, eagerness prevailed as boats clustered up on the committee boat end of the line, and the individual recall flag was displayed - boats peeled off and restarted.

In IRC 1 class, Cornel Riklin’s J/111 JITTERBUG took second and Simon Bamford’s J/111 KESTREL placed third, which puts them in the same order in the overall placing’s.

IRC 3 class saw Rachel & Robert Hunt’s J/97 JUMBLESAIL 2 post a 6th to drop them a bit off the pace from the class leaders, now sitting 7 pts back from the overall lead.

J/88 sailing upwind at Warsash Spring SeriesThe J/88s, having watched the IRC 1 & 2 class start, seemed more reluctant to push the line at the gun and held back to complete a clean start, and enjoyed close racing round the course. J-DREAM (David and Kirsty Apthorp) won by 11 seconds from TIGRIS (Gavin Howe) with SABRIEL JR (Dirk and Dianne van Beek) in third place.  This puts TIGRIS (Gavin Howe) in the first overall placing on a tie-breaker with J-DREAM (David and Kirsty Apthorp) second overall.  Then, just one point back in third is JONGLEUR (Richard Cooper), one point still further down is the Van Beek’s SABRIEL JR, with Paul Heys & P Tait’s JENGA rounding out the top five with 16 pts.

The sunny weather saw crews clustered on the Warsash Sailing Clubs lawn post-racing for the prize-giving, enjoying a few pints and spinning tall tales of “could’a should’a would’a” as to why they didn’t win, start better, or sail faster!  Sailing Photo credits- Close Hauled Photography.  Media enquiries to: Louise Nicholls, tele- +44-07825 586109 or email-  For more HELLY HANSEN Warsash Spring Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.