12s – Club Champ 3rd Heat

What a cracker of a day to be playing on the bay..!!

For those of you who missed it, Wow.. It was a picture perfect day out there.. Steady breese and close racing.. We could have done with a few extra knots I guess.. (says the only man who put in second rig)

With four 12’s and a token 18, the day was set to be a beauty..

PB was missing it’s tugmaster Tristan, but the fresh faced B-Mad stepped up to the plate without hesitation and showed that he is going to be a valuable asset to the QLD 12ft skiff scene.. Without the Ton, I was hesitant to put in big rig… With a combined crew weight of sub 140kgs and a forecast of 10-15kts, we decided we could get away with second rig..

We hit the water early to get a few tacks and gybes under our belt.. The breeze was under 10kts… Probably 5-8.. We were squirting around with one string… I was praying the breeze would come in a bit because hiking is for losers..!!

The wind picked up about half a knot by the start and B-Mad and I were almost able to hold two strings.. The start was a shambles.. Only Squidgee were on the line on time and this proved costly for the entire fleet. The first lap was light.. PB were cherub styling it up with one on the wire.. Richard and Benny on Ghetto were quick and caught up to Squid by the top mark however Squid were able to fend them off and get the kite up first.. PB was next around with Terry and Wayno a fair way back as they went to the wrong starting area and missed the gun… Squid dropped their big kite with no problems and rounded the bottom mark clean. Ghetto had an issue getting it down (too many of those little blue pills I’d say..) and were seen doing circles at the bottom mark trying to relax a little so it would go back in the bag… This gave PB and opportunity to catch up a little.. The next lap was a bit better wind wise.. We were able to two string finally.. We even had to dump a bit of main in the gusts..!! It was great..!! We didn’t make up any ground on the Ghetto Sled (but we didn’t lose any either) and Squid never looked back.. It was in that order in which we finished..

The second race was set to be a bit better as the breeze was a steady 8-10kts.. Terry and Wayno could almost pull two strings comfortably..!!

The start was another shocker.. I can’t talk for the other boats, but we stalled PB with 7 seconds remaining.. This killed our start..!! Squid got off clean and Ghetto slid low to poke their nose in front.. Good effort lads.. Old Yella was late too, I believe it was because of counting issues..

PB saw that Squid and Ghetto were headed left and with second rig in, we were never going to out pace them, so we tacked off and went right.. We got in to some extra breeze and were looking good.. We hit the lay line and secretly I was pretty confident things were starting to go our way.. Unfortunately it was not to be and we got knocked and left in a hole.. We all rounded pretty closely with Ghetto leading Squid and PB hot on their heels.. Ghetto then turned up the gas and left everyone for dead.. Well that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but they gybed early and put some space on Squid. We also gybed early but with out smaller kite, didn’t make up any ground on Squid. Old yella was not far behind, just waiting for a mistake from one of us… PB had a pretty sloppy rounding.. I had a brain snap and rounded up a bit quick.. We stalled again… Sorry B-Mad! The second work was interesting.. Ghetto went left and it paid.. PB went right and it paid.. Squid went up the middle and lost out on both of us.. They still rounded the top in second place, but now Ghetto were untouchable and PB were breathing down their neck again.. Pressure time ladies..!!! There was a line of breeze coming down from the East.. PB gybed early to try and make the most of it.. We were about 65m earlier than Squid who also gybed… I would be telling a fib if I didn’t say I got a bit excited about the prospect of scooting over the top of Squid like Ghetto did last week, however it was not to be.. We did gain a lot of ground, and it was close enough to give the boys a pretty serious scare…

Once again it was a great day to be on a 12.. We all were reminded of the importance of a good start.. In a two lap sausage course, it’s pretty tough to find a passing lane..

With crews looking towards the Nationals at Easter, expect the racing to get closer and closer.. Hopefully we’ll have the spectator ferry out again soon too..!!

Until next week.

Send it, don’t bend it..!!