Fowey River Championships 25-27 May – Day 1

 In Sailing

By Andrew Dellow

The Fowey River class held their championships over the Whitsun bank holiday weekend completing 8 races over a variety of courses. Nineteen boats took part in the event organised by POFROC and hosted by Royal Fowey Yacht Club and Fowey Gallants Sailing Club.

On Saturday morning the fleet set off in a light breeze for the first race from the yacht club line heading out of the river to sail a triangular course before finishing at a committee boat line in the bay. Terry Cole in Gabbiano made the best of the tricky conditions at the harbour entrance and was first to break from its grip. Followed closely by Andrew Dellow in Iota and Andy Matthews in Kingfisher thse three made a clean break for the windward Mark. The remainder of the fleet followed in a postcard display of colour. At the gybe mark Gabbiano was rather unlucky in hitting the mark and after taking a penalty turn found Iota ahead. The short run to the leeward mark and then up to the finish line was quite short and Iota held the lead to the finish. Gabbiano and Kingfisher held positions followed by Philip Henson (Zethar) and David Rundle (Kittiwake). For the second race the breeze had built a little and was round a triangular course all in the bay. At the end of the first beat Iota rounded marginally ahead of Zethar and Kittiwake with Kingfisher close by. Zethar and Iota headed neck and neck to the gybe mark with Iota just holding on to keep the overlap and lead to the leeward mark. However this was not to be a repeat of race one for Iota who dropped away to 10th by the next windward mark and Zethar took the lead which she held to the end with Kittiwake and Kingfisher following in. Bryn Baxter (Goldeneye) took fourth and Chris Spencer (L’Hirondelle) fifth. Race three was a reverse of the first race – starting out at sea and finishing at the yacht club line. The first lap was led by Kittiwake as the fleet headed back to the river. This is where the fortunes of many changed greatly. With the wind inshore dying and adverse tide it was boats that stayed out that benefited in the stronger wind. Kingfisher found themselves dropping from 3rd to 17th and conversely other boats picked up ten places. With the fleet bunching at the rocks off Polruan it really was anyone’s race but Kittiwake worked the light gusts and shifts well and won followed by L’Hirondelle and Zethar. Gabbiano was next followed by Trevor Kennedy (Saffron). So after day one there were three winners from the three races. This was about to change!

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