Laser Masters World Champs 2014 - Day 3

Finally some breeze. Fleet launching was held until midday with the first starts on both courses at 1pm.

On the Standards course to the South of the bay the wind was a 12 knot easterly, rising by 3pm for the second race to 15 to 20 knots with quite big seas. On the Radial course to the North the breeze was lighter all day, with 8-10 knots for the first race rising to 12 to 15 knots for the second. The bay we are sailing in is quite shallow so even this on shore breeze generated good sized waves which caught out many sailors downwind, with capsizes on the runs quite common in all fleets.

All divisions were able to complete 2 races and all sailors were back on shore by about 4.30 which made a change from the very late races on the first two days.

With the huge fleet on both courses it is often difficult to determine exactly where you are in your fleet as the front of later fleets are often catching the rear of the fleet in front. Results have yet to be published but the talk at the bar after racing was that several Kiwis had a good day while other (read me) managed to generate disaster from apparent success.

The star of the day was GM Radial Mike Keeton who scored a first and second to lead overall after 3 races. Scott Leith had a challenging day in the Apprentice Masters, loosing 8 places on the last short beat of the first race when he became entangled with the GGM fleet ahead but made amends in the second race with an all the way win. Ed also had a much better day with a couple of 4th. In the Standard apprentices Matt Blakey had a good day with a third and a fifth in spite of taking a dip in the second race. His excuse…."I am a Master now after all”. Ancient Steve Phillips in the Great Great Great Great ...Grand Masters showed up many by completing both races without a capsize and was tonight offering coaching to his less skilled junior compatriots.

Other who apparently had a good day were Andrew Dellabarca with a couple of top 5’s in the Standard Masters and Bruce Jones in the GM Radials while in the GM Standards Pete Van Ryn showed significant improvement with the extra breeze with a couple of top 10’s. After finishing 8th in the first race, only to find I was OCS, I managed to cap a disastrous performance for the day with a collision, 720 and two capsizes in one downwind leg to justify my evening coaching session from Steve Phillips. Paul Thomas also had a challenging day in the GM’s and was later seen seeking out wisdom from Steve. This was closely matched by Richard Dreverman in the GM Radials who’s recount of how to go from mid fleet to DFL in one capsize held his audience captivated for several minutes. The balance of the Blakey clan avoided the after match function so their form will be revealed with the results in the morning.

Tomorrow was originally to be the lay day but will be a full race day because of the races lost on the first 2 days. It looks like another good on shore breeze forecast so hopefully those who were successful today will repeat the performance and those who stuffed up will have benefitted from Steve’s wisdom at the bar.

Nick Page