We began with rain and little wind. At least it was not cold. On the water Race Officer Shane Rankin chose a course up and down the Shandon Shore so as to avoid the Clynder side of the loch which had detained us for so long on the previous Thursday. Catriona made the best start, played the shifts in the wind and reached the windward mark with a good lead. It ought to have been downwind to A, off the club, but somehow it wasn’t. Leeward side decks were now getting wet in the gusts. Wind in the Gareloch is often unpredictable but this day was an extreme example. There were holes of course but also instantaneous changes in direction of more than 90 degrees. Light air around the A mark all
Four Garelochs came to the starting line with crews on the helm. The evening breeze was welcome after the hot day. The Gareloch was uniformly rippled which encouraged us on a windward leg up the Shandon shore, then a broad reach to C, at the north end of Clynder. At the start of the reach, Catriona increased her lead from Hermes with a comparatively repaid hoist of the spinnaker. Thia and Dione some way back. The water off the Clynder shore had become glassy smooth. Catriona ran out of momentum and was carried the wrong side of the mark on the ebb tide. Hermes saw what was happening and went high. She looked good for a while but she too succumbed to the tide. Thia and Dione arrived n
Race Officer Charles Darley had to wait for the wind to fill in from the South, even then it was light. He opted for the shortest course possible, Z to A and back. The downwind start was tricky, Athene hadn’t reached the start by the gun. Halcyone, Hermes and Thia all started well, close to the Z mark, and hoisted spinnakers quickly. Halcyone’s spinnaker halyard let go, they sailed over the kite and Hermes slipped past. Further inshore Thia had a good line and clear air and made the A mark ahead of Hermes. Without her spinnaker Halcyone was slow, Luna’s was flying well and looked threatening. Rounding A Hermes was too quick and tapped Thia on the quarter. Halcyone rounded well close to the m
After a dry morning, five Garelochs went out to sail in rain which was unusually wet and gusts strong enough to concentrate the mind.
On the water Race Officer Carol Rowe sent us on a windward leg to B, off Silvers, followed by a long run downwind to Shandon Church. Catriona got the best start at the favoured end of the starting line. Dione behind and the rest inshore. It was the end of the flood tide and Catriona thought there would be advantage in going down the Shandon shore so as to find a back eddy. Dione followed and was lifted dramatically so as top take the lead. Catriona tacked out, expecting to have to duck but Dione tacked too. Constant heading of the wind put Dione, who wa
This was a race in a perfect South to South West wind. Race Officer Craig Macdonald set the course L6. The first leg being a beat down to the B mark on the other side of the loch due South, there was inevitably a tactical decision as to what the best route would be. The tide was at slack water at the start. Catriona, Dione and Teal tacked immediately onto port and crossed the loch, as did Athene. Thia, Hermes and Ceres for differing periods continued down the Rhu shore, before tacking across. Catriona, Dione and Teal were round B first with Thia not far behind. Hermes, Ceres and Athene, met at the mark, the latter having come down the Clynder shore on the opposite tack. It was reveale
The Boinard starting line (between the two pins of the fixed starting lines) has been useful for the past few Sunday races. Today, it could not have been more square to the wind if it had been laid specially. On the water Race Officer Iain MacGillivray selected a course beginning with a windward leg to B, off Silvers. Notwithstanding the true line, there was competition for the starboard end. It was up tide, which might have been a slight advantage. Catriona squeezed out Dione. Teal started well a little way down the line. Hermes had the port end to herself. Dione and Hermes went across to the Clynder shore early. Catriona, falling down on Teal, tacked to cover Dione. Hermes and Cat
Race Officer Linda Pender sent us across the loch to B, off Silvers, and back. There was time for two rounds. The pin end of the starting line was the place to be so that there was inevitable crowding. Halcyone was there a little early and obliged to bear away down the line. Catriona was a little late, having avoided the possibility of being squeezed out by Athene and Luna. Hermes would have started well, but for right of way boats below her. She bailed out and then fell foul of Teal as she sailed back on port tack to rejoin the queue. Catriona was able to sail over the top of Halcyone as the two proceeded down the Shandon shore. Teal had gone across the loch early and seemed at first
Ceres joined us for the first time this year, we now have 10 Garelochs afloat. The steady air of Saturday was gone at the start of Sunday afternoon’s race. On the Water Race office Barrie Choules, aboard Halcyone, set a course with a true windward leg to B, off Silvers, and back. He selected a Boinard start (the line between the two buoys which mark the outer ends of the two fixed starting lines). All this was good but his difficulty was a visible lack of wind on the Clynder shore. As it turned out, wind filled in after some initial indecision about direction. Catriona and Halcyone went down the Shandon shore and got the best of the back eddy associated with a flood tide. The rest set
The Gareloch Class midsummer passage race was this year to Gourock for lunch. Whilst not as adventurous as some previous events, a remarkably good race. The forecast had been for very light wind but it was steady all the way to the Royal Gourock Yacht Club and for our sail back in the afternoon. We were fortunate to have John Hammond’s Clearwater as start boat and Jamie Grant’s Kelana to finish us. Race Officer Reay Mackay set up a starting line just south of Rhu Narrows so as to avoid shallow water. It was low tide. Dione missed all but the one minute time signal and made by far the best start. Teal was there at the right time too, Catriona notably not. Dione achieved the best compromi
Not encouraging for the cruising sailor as we made our way out. It was gusty as a squall of rain passed down the Gareloch. The sky cleared by the time of the start. The gusts remained strong.
On the water Race Officer Iain MacGillivray (sailing as crew on Dione) started us with an upwind leg to D, on the Clynder shore, thence across to Shandon (G) and back. The fixed starting line, as almost always happens, was biassed. The pin end favoured this time. There was a choice between being early or being at the back. Dione and Halcyone got the best of it.
Dione and Catriona covered each other across the loch whilst Hermes and Thalia trended up the Shandon shore. Halcyone went more up