Con­trast­ing con­di­tions for 2017’s Round Mull Race

The Oban Times - - Sport -

CON­TRAST­ING weather con­di­tions gave a va­ri­ety of sail­ing in this year’s Ard­fern Yacht Cen­tre and Owen Sails-spon­sored Round Mull Race.

Run by Oban Sail­ing Club, the cir­cum­nav­i­ga­tion saw 36 boats com­pet­ing over the week­end, mak­ing it one of the most pop­u­lar events on the West Coast. The fleet races 100 miles over three stages – Oban to Tober­mory, Tober­mory to Bunes­san and Bunes­san to Oban.

Light con­di­tions af­ter the start in Oban Bay on Fri­day saw the four- class fleet merge as the wind shut off for most of the fleet at the north­ern en­trance to the bay.

Those lucky enough to be to the fore man­aged to keep the breeze and made good progress to Lis­more light, con­tin­u­ing on a beat to the fin­ish near Tober­mory Bay.

The Sigma 400 of Scott Chalmers won Class 1 and the Mish­nish Bucket for the best per­for­mance of the fleet over­all. The Class 2 win­ner was Tidechaser with Class 3 won by Hot Toddy. Don­ald McLaren and fam­ily in Sig­matic lifted the re­stricted sail class over­all.

On Satur­day the spin­naker fleet had a kite run out of Tober mory Bay with a fol­low­ing wind where places changed as the wind fluc­tu­ated be­fore go­ing ahead and in­creas­ing in strength.

The long beat to Bunes­san was pun­ish­ing for some of the smaller boats with a lumpy sea and strong head­wind with some boats tak­ing around seven hours to reach Loch na Lathaich. Those stay­ing out to­wards Coll took the ad­van­tage on boats short tack­ing the Mull shore.

Ken Pritchard and team on the J122 Moon­struck Too took the hon­ours win­ning Class 1 and the Bunes­san Hall Tro­phy for the best per­for­mance of the day. David Hay won Class 2 with Bra­gar while in Class 3 Al­is­tair Pugh and his Contessa 32 Marisca stormed ahead to win by a strong mar­gin.

Mys­tic Sun, the Ocea­nis 440 of Wil­liams and John­son, lifted the prize in the re­stricted sail class. The buf­fet and ceilidh or­gan­ised by the Bunes­san Hall com­mit­tee in aid of the Ross of Mull His­tor­i­cal So­ci­ety was ex­cel­lent with a good evening had by all.

Sun­day dawned calm with very light airs and the fleet over an hour to reach the Sound of Iona. Ze­phyrs saw kites fill and then col­lapse with some boats opt­ing at this stage to re­tire from the race. As time went on and the wind failed to ma­te­ri­alise, the ma­jor­ity of the fleet re­tired.

Rox­anne and Moon­struck Too were the only boats to fin­ish at Frank Lock­wood’s Is­land with a mat­ter of min­utes be­fore the time limit ex­pired. The Chalmers fam­ily on Sun­rise failed to make the fin­ish by only sec­onds.

Billy Forteith, main or­gan­iser of the race, said: ‘ We were pleased with the way the event went over­all. It was dis­ap­point­ing on Sun­day that the wind shut off but that’s rac­ing. We look for­ward to see­ing all the fa­mil­iar faces as well as new ones for next year’s Round Mull 2018.’

He thanked all the main spon­sors – Owen Sails and Ard­fern Yacht Cen­tre as well as Forteith Re­frig­er­a­tion and Heat Pump So­lu­tions, T Bar­bour Fu­els, Di­men­sion Polyant for T-shirts and David Stur­rock for pro­vid­ing the com­mit­tee ves­sel Unity for the event.

A spe­cial thanks was given to race of­fi­cer David Pre­ston and as­sis­tant race of­fi­cer Jim Tolmie for run­ning the event. The main tro­phies are awarded at the OSC prize-giv­ing in Novem­ber. Re­sults: Oban to Tober­mory Class 1: 1 Sun­rise; 2 Wookie 2; 3 Rox­anne.

Class 2: 1 Tidechaser; 2 Bra­gar; 3 Shad­ow­fax.

Class 3: 1 Hot Toddy; 2 Marisca; 3 Oys­ter Catcher.

Re­stricted sail: 1 Sig­matic; 2 Celtic Spirit; 3 Mys­tic Sun.

Tober­mory to Bunes­san Class 1: 1 Moon­struck Too; 2 Sun­rise; 3 Taz.

Class 2: 1 Bra­gar; 2 Sorr of Ap­pin; 3 Shad­ow­fax.

Class 3: 1 Marisca; 2 Oys­ter Catcher; 3 Scin­tilla of the Sea.

Re­stricted Sail: 1 Mys­tic Sun; 2 Shenavall; 3 Celtic Spirit. Over­all tro­phies: The Mish­nish Bucket – Sun­rise.

The Bunes­san Hall Tro­phy – Moost­ruck Too. Glen­coe Tro­phy – Rox­anne. Mull Plaque – fastest cir­cum­nav­i­ga­tion on elapsed time – Rox­anne.

Class 1: over­all An­tique Sch­weppes Tro­phy – Rox­anne.

Class 2: over­all Royal Bank of Scot­land Cup – Bra­gar.

Class 3: over­all The Jolanta Tro­phy – Marisca.

The Bil­ge­wa­ter Shield: The best over­all points of all classes, the Royal Bank of Scot­land Tro­phy – Moon­struck Too;

Fastest cir­cum­nav­i­ga­tion cor­rected time dou­ble-handed – The Bil­ge­wa­ter Shield – best dou­ble-handed per­for­mance – Oys­ter Catcher.

Over­all win­ner 2017 The Tor­ran Rock for the mono­hull with the best cor­rected time over­all re­gard­less of class – Rox­anne.

Tidechaser won the first leg class 2 race from Oban to Tober­mory

Ruar­idh MacCall’s Oys­ter Catcher lifted the Bil­ge­wa­ter Shield for the best dou­ble-handed per­for­mance in the Round Mull Race.

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