A close haven race
ALMOST calm conditions gretted the 11 yachts that contested the Closehaven Cup, race one of the Closehaven Marina Trophy Series.
A favourite course for many of the crew the portside rounding of both Low Isles and Snapper Island looked to be an impossibility as the fleet struggled to find the gentle zephyrs that skipped across the start line.
However, as the fleet headed out towards Low Isles the teasing breeze could be seen rippling across the flat sea in intervals indicating the promise of an impending lift as the crews all tried desperately to gain momentum.
With a consistent breeze finally settling in around midday the fleet had reached Low Isles with Shazam, Ice, Awanui and Ann Sea having some distance on their rivals. Spinnakers were raised for the downwind run to Snapper and Casuarina and Indigo soon began to pick up their pace closely fol- lowed by Ruff Red, Sea Wizard, T-Break, Miriama and Port FM Mais Oui.
Shazam held the lead rounding Snapper with Awanui moving into second ahead of Ice and as the afternoon breeze lifted to the forecast 10 to 15 knots the race for the finish was on.
Ann Sea moved into third and as the tail rounded Snapper Indigo was ahead of Casuarina followed by Ruff Red, Sea Wizard and TBreak.
Port FM Mais Oui and Miriama retired.
Shazam held on to take line honours ahead of Awanui, Ann Sea, Ice and Casuarina, with a break to Indigo, Ruff Red, Sea Wizard and T-Break.
Handicap corrected times produced a different story as again the lighter conditions favoured the smaller boats.
Ruff Red claimed first prize ahead of T-Break and Awanui.
OFF AND RACING:
Ice and Shazam at the start