The R Word
First race of the 2018/19 Dinah Beach wet season racing. Crew all shirted up and ready to roll.
The conditions for the first race look good. A chance of rain, but the weather forecast will always say that for the wet season. We were practicing getting our timing right for the start of the race when boom, the heavens opened. Winds dramatically increased so we reefed both main and head sail.
Thanks to Captain Pete who remained cool, calm and extremely collected we managed to start the race, albeit late but we crossed that start line.
Once the rain eased off we had a great sail day . Her kite spectacular. The saying of the day,
‘you can never have too much purple”.
Did I mention we got second place!
Click on the link to see the results of race 1
Our headsail had been damaged during Tropical Cyclone Marcus.
As a result, we decided to use our storm jib as we were determined to finish the wet season race series. It’s always heart warming to know that when in need, those around you will step up and lend a helping hand. So it was with fellow sailors. I received a call on Friday afternoon to say that a spare head sail was available for us to use on Sunday’s race. Beauty!!
Down we trot to the marina on Saturday to fit the sail and get race ready. We were very grateful and excited to have the loan headsail. Well, overjoyed actually.
The winds were 15 plus knots, waves about 1 metre. The start out from the Sailing Club in Fannie Bay was rather hectic. There would have been at least 30 boats, so it was very chaotic indeed.
The weather was perfect. A great day to be out on the water. We raced well as a team and most importantly, had fun.
We knew the day before that Emma Ward was having a little engine issue – well quite a biggie really- she wouldn’t start. The Captain went through some routine checks and came to the conclusion that it was the starter motor. So the mechanic was all booked to come at 9:30am race day morning.
Yep, all rusted out. Mechanic saves the day, contact with the supply proved fruitful and he was able to collect one for us. Out he trots to collect it. I consider myself a bit of an opportunist (well, when it suits me to be so) and I did purchase a Dyson not so long ago. I thought it quite normal and considered the ‘done thing’ to Dyson out the engine bay whilst there was a most opportune moment.
I am also keen to get my a hands dirty and learn as much as I can about the engine so that we can be self sufficient when sailing is our full time occupation. So there I am, squished into a little hatch box, learning about starter motors and trying to see how it all fits together. I actually had that space bookmarked for clothing storage. Hmmm . Will need to rethink that one.
A new starter motor fitted, a few less dollars in the back pocket and we are away. half an hour late but away!!
Crew was low yet spirits are always high. There’s no time to practice today, we are straight into it. I thought we were going to make it first over the start line, but Scallwag had the better angle and beat us by a whisker.
Here’s a few snapshots of our race day. There’s not many today – all four hands on deck were very busy with those running sheets.
Stormy weather ahead
After two missed races due to Darwin wet season stormy weather, we were ready to get back into the race groove. The weather held off nicely until midway through,and then it poured! it was nice to cool off – at first. Note to self, I must purchase some wet weather sailing clothes.
Speaking of which, we wore our new Emma Ward shirts. I think they look fabulous. a huge thank you to my colleague and friend for taking the time in her extremely busy schedule to embroider them. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
We managed first over the start line to win a six pack for our efforts.
Race results for race 4.
Kathy and Tanya preparing the main sail for the first race of the year. After shaking off the Christmas cobwebs with a few practice runs on the sails, we were ready to go. Emma Ward was third over the start line, a slow start but she sailed consistently and considering we have no spinnaker as yet, we held our ground throughout the race.
Captain Pete’s new tilt -o-meter gadget was very useful in determining the lean on Emma. The seas were calm, about 10 knots and the north westerly winds kept us cool all afternoon. Storm clouds were looming in the background, a great sight to see them developing in the distance on our way back to the lock.
We learnt how to sail on a 27ft Mottle called Kotuku. She was a fabulous little yacht. Just the perfect size, so easy to reach the halyard and raise the sails as a beginner sailor. (I’m only 157cm tall). We became members of the Dinah Beach Yacht Club to participate in the wet season racing series, cruising division. Kotuku sailed beautifully. She won the Stern Chaser event on Australia Day 2016 and was most improved for the race series