Winter Series Hots-Up

Gunfleet Sailing Club held the sixth and penultimate race in its Winter Series last Sunday morning, 28 November, with Ken Potts once more taking the honours in his Laser.
The cold offshore wind was hidden from the competitors as they rigged-up in the compound, the breeze blowing off the top of the cliff and leaving the Club as a natural suntrap.  However, once on the water things became a little livelier, and colder; the start of the race seeing Ken Potts pull away first in his Laser, followed by Derroll Pedder in his Solution and then Beth Elliott in a Topaz.  The first leg was a beat, against the last of the flood tide, up the coast to the Kingscliff buoy, but problems occurred early for Rob Locket when his carbon tiller extension literally “came off in his hand”.  He did well not too capsize as he regained control, but was forced to limp back to shore.  As the rest of the fleet rounded the first mark it was evident that Potts had carved himself a comfortable lead; but it was on this second leg out to the Seaward buoy that disaster struck Peter Downer in his Comet.  On the dead run out his boat started to rock and roll and it wasn’t long before he found himself in the water.  The Club’s Rescue Boat was very soon on the scene but by that time Downer had righted his dinghy and decided, in view of the very cold and variable winds that he too would retreat back to the shore.  The third leg, a very tight beat, got everyone comfortably in to AWS buoy before an exhilarating reach to the Eastcliff mark and a beat back to the line.  It was of little surprise that Potts had a very clear lead at the end of the first lap, whilst Andy Dunnett, sailing a Laser, was fighting with Pedder for second place.  
The second lap only strengthened Potts’s lead and it became apparent that Dunnett was getting the better of Pedder, so firming-up his position.  This lap passed without incident and the third and final lap saw very little change in places, Potts romping home to take the winning gun.  
Results – Winter Series 6:
1. Laser – Ken Potts
2. Laser – Andy Dunnett
3. Solution – Derroll Pedder
Course Board
Date 28 November 2016
Race Winter Series - 6
Start Time 10:00
Wind Strength (Beaufort) Force 2 - 4
Wind Direction Northerly
High Tide 10:13
Course K - S - AWS - E - Line