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Three Day Weekend of Races

CCRC weekend racing for the three day weekend was more “dank” than “bank” with very light winds.
Saturday was a race to Cowes with a shifting and variable wind but a good tide. As the PRO said “I feared we might not get to the first mark, then I thought I should have set a longer course, then I thought we would not get to Cowes so we shortened – and then the wind filled in!”. In the end a good race! Once in Cowes some gathered on various boats for drinks, and then it was off to Island Sailing Club for a super supper.
Sunday was most dank! As we set off for the race the drizzle started and with even lighter winds the race started. Beating with the tide was possible but the downwind legs, as the wind dropped and the tide built, were a struggle. Nevertheless most rounded the four marks before the race was shortened as the next leg was likely to be impossible. We headed back into Cowes to dry out and then many headed to The Lifeboat for dinner.
Monday was forecast to have even lighter winds and with a counter tide for the passage back to Chi. We motored to Gleeds where a race was started round a couple of marks towards Chi and then an extra leg in the hope the wind filled in. As it turned out the wind was so light that even when it veered to the south which should have made a broad reach even our low speed made the apparent wind ahead of the beam. Again the race was shortened for a race of around 3 hours. And, of course, as we entered the harbour the sun came out!
Well done to the PROs and ROs for setting courses in difficult circumstances.

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2022 – Race 1

The first CCRC race of 2022 was delayed from Saturday to Sunday by strong winds with gusts over 30 knots. Sunday still saw fresh winds with gusts of 22knots but also relative calms of just 10 knots. The race started at midday with a CCRC rolling start from Hard for a beat to Chi. Some had reefs in but a few not; then on the downwind legs to Winner and then Horse Tail most shook out those reefs. The sea was relatively calm because of the wind being offshore, and with the warm sunshine it was a pleasant sail. After the first circuit of four buoys there was a further leg out to Hard and then back to Chi and all finished by around 3pm.
A great first race of the year.

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Shake Down Sail In Company

On Tuesday last week (5th April) Slipstream and Calypso yachts synchronised our day sail plans to sail from in company from Gosport Marina into the Eastern Solent for a few hours. The weather was forecast to be west 12-15kts average wind with sunny intervals. The passage plan was to sail to Bembridge for lunch. We left Gosport Marina mid morning, exiting the harbour entrance on the tidal stand a few hours into the flood. We on Calypso cautiously started with two reefs in the mainsail whereas the larger Slipstream opted for 1 reef. It was a Reach then Broad Reach to near Bembridge entrance. The sea state was not too choppy so progress was very good. On Calypso we checked the tidal heights carefully, Heaved To dropping the sails and prepared to enter. Then Slipstream hailed us with a loud whistle to change plans and instead anchor in Priory Bay. The wind had picked up a little and it was Spring tides, but there was just enough shelter from Seaview to anchor for lunch. On Calypso we found a spot with 0.5m under keel and used the light weight Fortress anchor which was perfect for the sand. A third yacht appeared and joined us anchoring in the bay. Our lunch in the cockpit was fine but the wind crept up a little more. With the anchor up and sail hoisted it was then a Close Hauled course back to Portsmouth Harbour. By now the TWS had climbed to around 21 kts in the exposed area by the forts and briefly a little more. Hence was pleased to have two reefs in both sails. It was a super sail back which needed crew on the rail, the Traveller eased down and the genoa sheeting point ease aft a little. I managed to get drenched by a surprise wave that came over the bow. It was a gusty in the entrance but found a spot near Haslar Marina to drop Calypso’s sails. We parted company with Slipstream as they (motor?) sailed back to their summer mooring up by Hardway.

Our Log on Calypso recorded a max speed through the water of 6.8Kts, which is pretty good for Calypso in that chop. It did not rain on us and we had the right sail area up to suit the conditions. With three of us on board was ideal for a potter. Prefect. More of a Shake Up sail as opposed to a Shake Down sail.

We are looking forward to the 1st yacht race of the season on the 23rd April in Hayling Bay.

CCRC AGM & Prize Giving

CCRC held its Annual General Meeting at the weekend and held a prize-giving lunch immediately afterwards in lieu of our usual Prize Giving Dinner (and often dance).
After a year with few post-race socials it was great for everyone to get together to socialise and collect our prizes.

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Southerly Winds…

It was the last CCRC weekend of racing for 2021 and what a couple of days of weather!
The forecast for Saturday was light southerly breezes so a westerly at the start was a surprise – but then it died completely leaving the fleet stationary and some pointing the wrong way. Just as we were thinking we might need to abandon and restart (or even abandon and not restart) a breeze appeared from the south so we were off. The clouds cleared and there was pleasant sunshine. There then followed 5 legs of competitive racing with much changing of positions as downwind sails were used or not. The 30 min wait for the wind in the first leg meant we had to shorten though.
Sunday had a similar forecast for wind direction (Southerly) but more wind – and so it was. We had a long leg out to Horse Tail and a beat back plus a few legs around the Hayling Bay buoys before a final leg almost dead downwind to finish at WE. The stronger wind (up to 20knots) meant fewer flew their downwind sails – or needed to.
A good weekend for the last races of the year with more boats out than expected.


A Pleasant Weekend of Gentle WInds

CCRC’s weekend racing was in light winds and sunshine – surprisingly pleasant for mid-October.
On Saturday we raced from Chichester to Gosport. After a short windward leg from Hard to Chi, there was a long leg to the mark “Mary Rose” when most flew downwind sails in the very light winds with speed much assisted by the tide. From there we had a challenging leg to the next mark where it was difficult to stem the tide but most managed it and the race was shortened there.
Then it was into Gosport marina where we had drinks hosted by Sycorax in their cockpit/deck and then many had fish & chips from a take-away which was also eaten in the cockpit where it was still warm enough at 9pm.
Next morning it was the race back and there was a little more wind so two windward legs were possible but also another long broad reach with many spinnakers and cruising chutes in use.
All goes to show that October can produce some super weekends for sailing.

HISC Nab and Sparkes Races

CCRC members are welcome to take part in the Hayling Island Sailing Club Nab and Sparkes races the weekend of 2/3 October. Entry is free, get details and application forms via the link.

Passage Races to Hamble

This weekend’s races had some interesting challenges for participation including, for some, getting sufficient fuel to get to the boat (which prevented one entrant) or to sail (which was solved by a fuel transfer at sea!).
The forecast for Saturday for the passage to the Hamble was for hardly any wind in the morning then building a little in the afternoon. A course was set to start from Chi but the lack of wind resulted in the start being moved to outside Portsmouth. After a short beat the passage up the eastern Solent was aided significantly by the tide, but this proved to be the undoing for all but one boat because when the wind dropped we were unable to pass the correct side of one buoy. Hence only one boat managed to continue on and finish; but we all had a good and challenging sail in such light airs – though we could have done without the drizzle at the start.
Those staying onboard overnight at Port Hamble had drinks together (courtesy of the Commodore) and then dinner at Banana Wharf restaurant where we sat outside warmed by patio heaters.
Sunday dawned with a little more wind and we were able to start where planned with a short beat and then a long downwind passage all the way to Chi. The question was whether to use the main channel or Dolphin Passage and at times the wind dropped to keep the question open (for the back markers). But the wind filled in and all went between the forts and then had a more speedy sail in a triangle in Hayling Bay. The finish was slightly confused by the addition of another round yellow buoy near Chi – but fortunately it did not have “Chi” written on it.

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Cowes & Back

Another weekend of CCRC sailing as we gradually return to normal races and socials.
Saturday saw us sail to Cowes with a strong tide in our favour,a south-easterly wind and brilliant sunshine. However, that strong tide was a real challenge on the race leg from East Bramble back to Browndown where the fleet had to short-tack close to shore to achieve any ground. For some that leg of 1.8 miles involved 17 tacks – a great way to improve your technique for tacking!
Dinner was at Island Sailing Club where we had an excellent meal with that superb view across the Solent.
Sunday saw rain and stronger winds (up to 25knots) and some showers for the return race. The start was delayed slightly to allow a ship through what would otherwise have been us beating across the main channel. After that beat it was straight back to Chi but with some boats choosing the route through the forts and others through the dolphin passage.

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