RCIYC MUG Frostbite - Race 1 Report

RCIYC MUG Frostbite - Race 1 Report

Tuesday 22 January 2019

Seventeen yachts braved the January cold to compete in the first of the Royal Channel Island Yacht Club MUG Frostbite series last Saturday. Conditions were good with a moderate WNW wind gusting to 24 knots as the yachts jostled for a place on the start line. The course announcement was unusually delayed as works on Castle Cornet meant the race starting hut was without power. But much experienced OOD Captain John Lee took control of difficult circumstances and ran the race in his admirably competent manner. Racing Class 1 started first at 09.00 sharp, a very ordered reach towards Anfre.  Simon Henning's White Rabbit pulled away to round Anfre first, Mick Holland's Majic, Lloyds/Huges/Holmes' Sun of a Gun following on. John Knight's tiny RS Fidelity, skippered by Phil Babbé, match-raced against Martin Priest's much bigger J97 Fandangle, some admirable mainsheet work on the latter taking it into the lead. A slight sea then favoured fast and effective spinnaker setting as the yachts headed towards Jethou. Meanwhile, the Cruiser Class II were away at 09.05, as McKerrell/Parkin's Busker and Knowles/Aslett's Glory Days entered into a luffing match to gain the upwind advantage on the start line. Their efforts were in vain, as John Falla's Banjaard glided ahead of the fleet cementing her position with a well deployed spinnaker. Jim Nicolle's Mustard Mitt attempted the same manoeuvre but a little early and thereby lost valuable pace at the mark.

Some distance ahead in the racing class, the only multi-hull yacht, Garnham/Hamilton's trimaran XXX was well suited to the conditions and accelerated easily into the lead with one hull clear of the water. Some distance behind, White Rabbit, Roger Martel's Kaya, Sun of a Gun and Majic sailed a competitive and close race, jostling for position with several forced manoeuvres.

It was on the second rounding of Aiguillon, near Jethou, that Sun of a Gun hit the mark, forcing her to perform the mandatory penalty 360 degree turn. Also at that mark, on first rounding, the short-handed Fidelité struggled to just avoid collision with Fandangle whilst retrieving her spinnaker in a sudden gust.

Visibility worsened towards the final leg as Banjaard emerged from the drizzle to take line honours for the Cruisers and Kaya for the Racing Class. Results on corrected time: Cruising Class II 1st Panthalassa, 2nd Dark Horse, 3rd Banjaard; Racing Class I 1st White Rabbit, 2nd Sun of a Gun 3rd Majic.