23rd November 2002.
A miserable journey down in driving rain after oh - less than four hours sleep.
Luckily the weather never reached one prediction of force 7, in fact we ended
up with little rain and steadily improving weather with quite a lot of sun - and
definitely warm for the time of year. In SunSail 60 this time and Peter Hopps
in SunSail 76.
We has a reasonable first race, coming 4th. The second race was good and we
were 3rd and made a good gybe on the last run, but our bowman, Richard decided
not to duck. He was concussed and so we were a man down and everyone out of synch.
as we had to change roles. The take down was a disaster. Although the kite came
down (messy!), the jib had become wrapped up and had to be taken down and re-hoisted
- meanwhile most of the fleet passed us on the short beat to the finish.
Despite our missing man, we managed 3rd on the shortened last race. Quite an
exciting finish as we on port and close tacked under the boat in 3rd to get inside
at the mark. We had not realized this was in fact the finish, and when we found
out we thought we had missed out, but amazingly we had got him!
Astoundingly we had only dropped one place via our second race disaster, and
were 4th, just missing out on the prizes - so not so shabby after all. Peter came
13th (I think he was taking it pretty easy!) so no Champagne for Corinthians this
On the sixth and last heat of the SunSail regatta, I was in SunSail 61 with
a team of miscellaneous crew, brought together and skippered by ex Cap Gemini
and ex Deloites Ben Dillistone (I sailed in 2 successful Industry Sailing Challenge
campaigns with him when I was at Cap Gemini). Also in the race was SunSail 56
Skippered by our very own Richard Gray.
For almost all of us this was the first time in these new SunSail 37's and
a scratch crew. The first race was light and we were close on Richard's heels
for 3rd place.
was windier and wetter, many boats having problems with their spinnakers. We had
an interesting moment when the mainsheet console cracked! But ignoring this seemed
to work! and we got another 3rd. A first in the next race left a more interesting
situation for the last race as we could only avoid qualifying for the final by
SunSail 59 doing very well.
We had decided to sail our own race, but we rounded the windward mark behind
59 in second place so the race was on! Despite there own sponsored spinnaker,
we managed to get a into commanding position so we were inside at the last mark
and our best takedown and rounding meant they couldn't hope to catch us on the
final short beat to the finish.
We ended 2nd overall and will go on the the final on the 23rd November. Richard
Gray just missed qualifying with 4th Place.
Photo from SunSail website - Happens to be boat we sailed!