Hayling laid on its finest conditions for a weekend of riding the tide. With the demise of Holt last year the event was lacking the usual push and turnout was down by all classes and the 800s and Mustos got canned at the last minute due to a lack on entries.
So 17 boats took to the harbour for a load of short sharp racing, enough to blow the cobwebs away and sort out rusty boat handling. I had my new Hyde back up after a small luff round mod to flatten off the bottom 1/2 of the sail which resulted in some more upwind pace and I spent Saturday battling it out with Mike L and Si. I felt I was generally as fast upwind but quicker down while my racing was littered with the usual mistakes and dropped maneuvers, the sort of thing that not going sailing much does to you!
Saturday night saw a few mothies chilling out at the sailing club with Ben Paton feeding Pete Barton many rums, tequilas and anything else he could find and the look on Pete's face in the morning said it all!
Sunday got pretty hectic with a lot of chop and traffic crossing the course. We were running the gibing slalom course which was highly entertaining although I spent quite a while going down the mine and managed at least one lap of one race failing to land a single gibe - I managed one near flawless race in the lead but one more fluffed gibe let Mike through! It's pretty scary the distance that one mistake can cost you!
Quite a bit of random damage over the weekend, with two tillers sat on, one mainsail under the jetty, one downed rig and one rudder attached to one of the marks - would have been interesting to see how a solid sail would have coped with the many stacks and HISC sand!
Chris Bashall took load of photos which are on his website here.
So with winter ahead and still no water at the sailing club there's not going to be a lot of sailing for the near future at least which leaves me pondering wings and things...