Sailing Report

6th in Class in Cherbourg Race

The last Royal Ocean Racing Club race of the UK season was to Cherbourg. The Tyranny of work depleted our team to 5 including recent Competent Crewer Trish in her first yacht race.
Not our best start but we kept with the pack going down the Solent mainly under Code Zero in light airs and then out through the Needles and into the Channel. With 10 knots more wind than Forecast we flew a spinnaker and set off quickly towards Cherbourg. The forecast was for the wind to drop to zero by mid-day Saturday and light airs really aren’t the best conditions for Wild Spirit.
By mid-channel the wind was dropping off and it was clear that navigation was going to be key to finishing. We positioned ourselves to the west of Cherbourg and the remains of the East going tide helped us to the Harbour entrance, but now the wind dropped to 5 knots or less and the tide along the inside of the long outer wall was building against us for the last mile to the finish level with the central Fort.
With the biggest spinnaker up and John doing a sterling job of holding the Pole out we carefully positioned the team’s weight and Geoff did a great job of keeping us going until we just crossed the line.
A good dinner out followed by an overnight motor and then spinnaker run home, saw us back just as the wind and rain picked up. A great weekend of racing and sailing and brilliant introduction for Trish who proved a very competent crew member indeed.
Only 2 races left in UK season, then Caribbean for February cruise and races.

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