So far the weather has held, there were no repeats of heavy weather leading to races being abandoned, and all four races scheduled for 2022 were held.
Race 7, the first race of 2022, a handicap start, was held in a light southerly that was less than 10 knots. Annette, Ron Johnston and Ben Speed, won with Vinca, Russell and Luke Johnston second, making a good showing for the Johnston family. Tempo, Peter Dallas and Ian Campbell was third. It was a close finish, the first three crossed the line within one and half minutes.Totally Sinister, Craig Jelfs and Neil Bilsborough, recorded the fastest time.
Race 8 was a championship race held in a 15 knot nor-easter. Tranquil, Neil Johnson and Brett Pollitt, crossed the line a mere seven seconds ahead of Totally Sinister, followed one minute later by Uncle Norm, Eric Partland and Gary Wills. Totally Sinister is leading the championship point score, with Tranquil second and Uncle Norm third. There are two more championships to be raced, on February 26 and March 19. Hirondelle, Peter Barnes and Geoff Smith, won on handicap, with Vinca second and Murphy’s Law, David Johnston and crew, third.
Race 9 was another handicap race, held in a fresh southerly of more than 25 knots. Aeolian, Darren and Kylie Chignell, won, 20 seconds ahead of Merlot, Peter McSullea and Peter Deall. Murphy’s Law came in third. Uncle Norm recorded the fastest time.
Race 10 was perhaps the most frustrating race so far this season. The forecast was for a southerly reaching 20 knots with light rain. The latter part was right. The race was half an hour late starting. Race official, Ken Nagle, in the lead up to the usual 2pm start, set the southerly course. But the wind swung around, and after studying the flags on the Anzac and Harbour Bridge – both of which appeared to be going in different directions – as well as local flags, and conferring with the starter boat crew, Denise Walsh and Mandy Wills, Ken changed the course to the North Westerly. The race started under extremely light conditions at 2.30 and the day did not improve.
Over the course of the afternoon, the wind, such as it was, swung around the compass, occasionally dying completely. It was a scratch start. Uncle Norm excels in light conditions so it was no surprise they crossed the finish line first, followed by Annette and then Merlot. Three boats, Aeolian, Tempo and the newcomer Fire Truck, after rounding the clubhouse buoy for the final triangle, decided they weren’t going to finish within the race time limit, and paddled ashore.
Five boats finished, the last of them, Vinca, drifted across the line with just a couple of minutes left. The Johnston family motto appears to be never give up. David and Russell were regular winners of the season point score. David said the key was to always turn up.
Uncle Norm won the double, with first on handicap as well as fastest time. Annette was second on handicap, and Tranquil third.
Murphy’s Law is leading the season pointscore, with Tranquil second and Annette third.
Totally Sinister is leading the fastest point score, followed by Tranquil and then Uncle Norm.
Robert Speedy, who sailed with partner Teresa Lane, has sold their boat, DC, to South Australia.
And as one leaves, another joins: Fire Truck, sailed by Paul Thompson and Nico Grant-Mitchell, has joined the club. Both Paul and Nico sailed TS16s at DSC in the eighties and nineties. More on them next week.