The weather on Saturday 18th April couldn’t have been better for the launching of the keelboats at Toward Sailing Club. Sunshine and light winds provided ideal conditions for the eight boats to be craned into the water at Ardyne Basin before making their way round to the moorings at Toward.
The first race of the season took place the following Thursday and, unbelievably, the conditions remained the same. Eight boats, of eight different classes, arrived at the start line eager to get their hands on the Starter Trophy. The gentle westerly wind was ideal for the first race where everyone is still trying to find their way around – both their boat and the course. Alasdair McLean in his Laser got off to a good start closely pursued by Alasdair Finlay’s Moody, Saorsa ,and John Orr in his Contender.
John soon took the lead but the light conditions were never going to suit him as he failed to shake off the others. As is always the way at this time of year, as the sun set and the temperature rapidly fell, so did the wind. This left the slower boats falling further and further behind until Kriss in her Topper, not wanting to be sailing in the dark, decided to retire with two legs still to go.
Once the handicaps had been applied it proved to have been a close contest with the first four boats having little to separate them. Alasdair McLean came out on top finishing just over two minutes ahead of Saorsa.
Sadly the benevolent conditions couldn’t last forever and by Monday evening the hardy souls that turned up for the ‘Come and try it’ session were face with a Force 4 wind and decidedly chilly temperatures. This unfortunately meant that, in the interest of safety, the session had to be cancelled.
|1st||Nae Loser (Laser), A. McLean|
|2nd||Saorsa (Moody 336), A. Finlay|
|3rd||Dr Feelgood (Contender), J. Orr|