One competitors (John Down) experience of the SAMM racing on May 31st.
First race anti clockwise, wind SSW at 4.5 knots. First mark 90 degrees to left of start gate so everyone trying to get to port side of gate. Ginetta on my starboard side and Tres coming in on my port between me and the port start buoy. We crossed together very tight! Tres took my wind and set off for the first buoy but I caught him, overtook him on his windward side and he couldn't round the buoy until I had. It’s called tactics.
The wind shifted to SSE and built to an average of 9 knots, perfect for my Radial and I was up on the plane several times between buoy 3 and the gate. No mistakes and flat out all the way. I saw a couple of port/starboard near misses between the two Sailfish boats.
The race officer had set 10 mins between the first and second races, perfect.
Second race clockwise due to the wind shift during race 1. I sat back hove to about 2 meters from start line which put me in good position to cross the line first, and off to buoy one, with the other 6 boats hard on my heels as they had all started within 37 seconds of the gun.
Wind stronger at up to 11 knots at times and waves really got up. Being slapped hard and drenched by waves. I led to first buoy and decided to sail on a little before turning towards buoy 2. I didn’t go far enough and I was dropping below buoy. Others boats behind saw it and sailed on further in attempt to get a clear run to the buoy. I had to tack up to buoy so lost ground.
On the 2nd lap at 1st buoy, Tres coming in on Starboard with me having just gone onto a port, phew 6 inches from full speed contact. Got caught out at gibe mark buoy 3 trying to switch my “sailing by the lee” over to the other side and whilst sorting it out missed gate. Had to turn back to go through the gate which cost me time.
At buoy 1 most people sailed on so to make up ground. I turned sharp up towards buoy 2 which looked like a good move until in the tack near buoy 2 I got stuck in irons costing me yet more time! Continued to chase Tres and Dos, slowly catching up by lap 5, when Tres capsized in front of me and I had to take avoiding action. Started to close gap on Dos. Did not hear about to finish signal but support boat told me.
My hull was full of water when the bung took out, need to investigate why.
Best sail for ages
Results first race: Ginetta 367 secs, Vision + 5 secs, Uno + 16 secs, Radial (me) 6 secs, Cuatro + 5 secs, Tres + 15 secs, Dos + 3 secs
Second race: Ginetta 336 secs, Uno + 4 secs, Cuatro + 9 secs, Vision + 5 secs, Dos + 3 secs, Radial (me) + 28 secs, Tres + 26 secs. I lost out because of the two errors and Tres did because of their capsize.
Well done to Ginetta's crew Jeremy Clark right, Robert Hudson left who won both races after handicaps were applied but the results were again very close