Race Report by Des Silverson
With winds forecast to be light and variable we knew the Ferguson may well be a shortened after one or two legs.
The first leg to Lancing and back had some interesting moments with wind speed up and down, a bit of a shift and on occasions, nothing at all. Second leg out to a laid mark, as #4 is not there, proved to be much quicker although there had been a couple of retirements. The progress seemed good and the race officers decided to let it go the full distance and be the full long race. There was a slight sign of compassion as the mark that was to be off the West Pier was moved to just short of Millionaire’s Row. This took taking around 3 miles off the distance and enabled the remaining dinghy helms and crew to get off the hard sides of the boat a little earlier and resume blood circulation, especially as it was the first long race for some time due to the lockdown. This leg was a bit of a challenge. Flying the change of course flag I set off to guide the dinghies to the new position of the mark. We were then hit by an almighty squall which sped the boats up a lot, produced more rain than I have seen in a long time, but bought the visibility down to only a few yards. Fortunately, with the radar I was still able to keep an “eye” on the boats and the mark, and shepherd them the right way. The squall passed, as they do, and a slow but pleasant run made for the last bit of the race and the line. After applying the handicap, the dinghies finished in the same order in which they crossed the finish line.
Thanks go to John R and John P as OOD and AOD. Kevin K, Dave T, Steve F, Ivan C, Dave L, Alan F for safety and mark laying. Plus Andrea for the beverages.