12s – Points 8th Dec 2012

10-15kts of pure racing pleasure..!! That’s what we had on Saturday up here in Brissie..!!

The skiffs went on tour this week, across the harbour to RQYS for a rock star appearance. We had a good turn out too with half a dozen 18’s and of course the mighty 12 footers sprawled out all over the lawn..!!

The class exposure was great. I had at least 7 people ask what type of boat PB is.. One guy actually reminded me of a scenario I’d seen 8 years ago on the same rigging lawn.. I was asked what I’d done to my cherub..!! 8 years ago my good friend Paulo was asked the same question by a young spinner named Buddha.

The ramp was littered with blue jellies, this immediately changed the days focus.. Avoid swimming at all costs..!! Craig and I jumped in the boat and started heading down the harbour.. Everything was going smoothly until I noticed the outer casing of the mainsheet looking particularly tatty.. Uh oh.. It lasted two tacks before snapping.. Bugger.. Craig then spent the remainder of the sail out to the start line undoing thumb knots and whipping with his teeth so as to remove the casing completely.. The race cost me $20.. I’m pretty sure it will have cost Craig $2000 in dental fee’s..!!

Bobbing around before the start there was about 10-12kts.. We all had 2nd rig in and I for one was worried about the rig choice… The gun went and Ghetto had the better start of the 12’s.. PB was a bit below them and before we knew it we were hitting hard left.. Ghetto tacked first and PB followed suit.. When we got up to the top mark inside Green Island the Breeze went light and patchy.. I found myself once again sitting on the all too familiar gunwale.. Not much is more demoralising than seeing those light weight hooligans on Ghetto Sled two stringing and dumping main while you’re squatting on the side of your boat.. Ghetto got around the mark in first place and had a handy lead.. They gybed early, I’m not sure why.. PB came around next and up went the big black kite.. Craig did a super hoist and before we knew it we were powering downhill.. Good times! The breeze started filtering down and we got some good puff coming down to the gate.. The decision as to which way we would round the bottom gate was made easy by the line of breeze to the North.. Craig and I did some tricky moves involving gybes and drops and in a blink of an eye we were once again heading North.. The breeze was strengthening and we were now in perfect 2nd rig conditions.. Dumping about a foot of main and absolutely motoring..!! Run rabbit run..!! We had Ghetto Sled in our sights.. They had once again taken the inside line.. We hit the left corner and by the top we had really put a dent in their lead… Both of us put up our kites for the sprint to the finish and lucky for Ghetto, they managed to hold on for the win.. PB crossed 28 seconds later and were pretty happy with the comeback.. CST started the race but after a kite tangle and a swim decided to focus on training and didn’t finish the race..


The second race started in the new breeze and spirits were high in PB..!! The start was good with PB right on the boat end, Ghetto were slightly down the line with a couple of 18’s between them.. The 18’s then proceeded to ruin all that beautiful starting work.. Winning Appliances found some high mode and slowly forced themselves on PB and over the top of Ghetto.. PB tacked off to get clear air.. This was not really part of the game plan but sometimes you just have to go with plan B.. Ghetto continued out to the left while PB were left to find pressure on the inside.. We spotted some breeze out to the right and sailed to it.. It was a header.. A quick tack and we were looking famous. We slid up inside Green Island crossing well ahead of Ghetto and rounded the top mark first.. The rounding was somewhat agricultural but we got there and up went the kite.. Craig joined me on the wire and said SEND IT..!! We did.

We gybed on the lay and smoked down to the bottom marks.. The breeze was a good 15kts now and the flat water sure made for a smoking 2nd rig ride.. We got to the bottom at exactly the same time as the Etchells.. Damn.!! We negotiated our way through them and dropped the kite.. We dropped it so quick it went in to the water.. OH NO..!!!! Craig quickly pulled it back up and then down but we were well past the mark by now.. Ghetto gave us a break by also prawning and actually having a really quick swim at the bottom mark.. Ghetto still had the inside line on us as we had really sailed well past the mark.. Cover me if you can we called back.. No response.. It was on..!! We tacked over to head North again.. Ghetto put on a close cover but PB had speed to burn…!! The cover had stretched and allowed a bit more movement underneath.. We tacked again and ducked Ghetto.. It was close.!! Ghetto tacked again to cover but their tack was slow.. PB got a little gain and started to work height.. We climbed up on them and forced Ghetto to tack away.. PB hit the layline and Ghetto splash tacked.. GAME OVER.

The ride to the finish was sporting with PB narrowly crossing the Etchell fleet to take line honours.. Ghetto crossed 1min 18secs later.. Great contest between the two skinny boats.. The racing is so close it’s fantastic training for the upcoming Interdoms..!!

This weekend is the first heat of the QLD 12ft Skiff State Titles..!! Get your boat out and come sailing..!! The forecast is for some super sailing and radical racing..!!

I for one can’t wait..!!

Until then SEND IT, DON’T BEND IT.!!


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