According to poets, spring ‘goes out like a lamb’: but not at Parkstone! Our 13 race spring series ended with a tie for first place that was only to be resolved by reference to the final race placings. This resulted in a well earned trophy for Roger Hakes. The last race of the series was one of the windiest (although still not that windy at F4), and had the series’ best turnout at over twenty boats; so at least Ann had the fun of a good race to ameliorate the disappointment of a costly 8th place. Had she improved this result by only one place, the honour of series victory would have been hers. So, for once, the rich didn’t get richer. Mind you, in terms of racing success, you’d be hard pushed to describe Roger as poor!
Those of you that don’t like statistics might want to skip this next bit, but before you do, just pause to appreciate Donald’s achievement of having the lowest total score (103). It would be churlish not to forgive him the one race he didn’t start since only two others, Mark Scott and Nigel Holland, equalled his achievement, (with slightly higher total scores chaps). 14 boats, out of a total entry of just over fifty, managed to sail a series. Starters ranged from as few as 6 to as many as 21 (it may be more than that because there have been recording issues).
In eleven out of the thirteen races, competitor numbers were in double figures. This, along with some challenging wind conditions and some problematic courses, led to close sailing throughout the fleet. There were seven different race winners in this series, one of whom was Stuart Bromidge. This success was achieved after a close fought battle with Roberta – perhaps you could ask him for some tips Andrew? Racing around me seemed to be particularly fierce and close; admittedly, this was usually because one or other of us had made some sort of error. However, it was reassuring to see that even hotshots can capsize and to note as they passed my mid-fleet position that it takes them a little while to get back to the front of the fleet! I think last year’s Mars Bar Trophy winner (biggest improver), Gary Hind, is still one to watch, as he snaps at the heels of the leading pack.
This report would be incomplete without some mention of the ladies in our fleet. Not many clubs, I imagine would be able to compete with the number of ladies who sail a laser at our club. That’s only half the story though because it makes no reference to ability. 3 women in the top 12 in the series is creditable enough, but two in the top 5 shows what quality we have.
Well, that just about wraps up the Spring Series. What can you look forward to in the Summer one? Like Coleridge you might envisage the following:
“Swiftly, swiftly flew the ship, Yet she sailed softly too. Sweetly, sweetly blew the breeze. On me alone it blew.”
Take my advice though…… stay away from any strange long-winged birds!