October is the month that many non-resident members of SAMM and those that were away during the heat of the summer arrive back in Spain. So the race Committee decided to organise racing every Sunday during the month and, by popular agreement, make the extra three dates Pursuit Racing.
This involves having a race with a time limit; 90 minutes in this case, starting the slowest boat first, followed by the remaining boats at irregular intervals calculated using their handicaps.
Due to the lack of early wind, the first race started at 12.10pm, in about 4 knots, with 9 boats competing around a triangular course. The little “Rosita” was away first, followed by the rest over a 26 minute period. Unfortunately “Rosita” struggled badly in the light wind and could not make the start line for over 10 minutes, so retired.
A good race ensued with “Sirocco”, who was one of the second boats away, gradually being caught by Shoestrings “Dos” and “Tres”, the last boats away and racing neck and neck. “Sirocco” finally being overtaken just minutes from the finish after completing just over two laps of the course.
By 2.40pm the wind had increased to 8 knots and this time “Mistral” and “Sirocco”, were the first boats away. The Skipper was second away, 6 minutes later, but had to retire when her mainsail split.
“Mistral” led the field for 3 laps as “Dos” and “Tres”, again racing hard against each other and just seconds apart, chased her down. They both finally passed her during the 4th lap, with 30 minutes of the race remaining and then continued to battle each other for the lead. At times only 10 seconds separated them but eventually “Tres” won by a margin of 36 seconds. The Laser Radial also managed to pass “Mistral” with just 5 minutes to go to secure third place.
Everybody enjoyed the change from the normal race format and are looking forward to trying pursuit racing again in two weeks time.
Morning race First: Dos, John Down/Tim Wills. Second: Tres, Jack Moss/Vernon O’Byrne. Third: Sirocco, Julian Pering/Steve Rocks.
Afternoon race First: Tres, Tug Wilson/Vernon O’Byrne. Second: Dos, John Down/Kerry Marlow. Third: The Laser Radial of Norman Vener.
Photo: Shoestring Dos and Tres battle it out