Essex Yacht Club ISO Open Meeting, 19th/20th May 2012

Travelling Adventures by Ali the Crew

Stick and I set off from Winchester at 7.30am, we arrived at the Wharf in Leigh on Sea at 10 and walked along the seafront path to the Essex Yacht Club to sign in for the ISO Open Meeting.  In total there were six ISOs prepared to sail. We walked back to Serenity, rigged then dashed back to the clubhouse on HMS Wilton to change. We missed the race briefing.

Having walked back to the Wharf again we set sail and joined the fleet on the Thames Estuary for two races. Bruce handed us the sailing instructions from his boat as we approached the start! [Stk: We read the SI’s going up the first beat]. A fleet of RS200s set off first on the same course and then we began racing; well we all slowly bobbed about due to the light breeze.

Two races were held before the tide went out and left us on a sea of mud. The two eventual leading boats were quite a distance ahead of the rest of us, but the remaining  crews were quite evenly matched. We tied Serenity to a pontoon at the club before walking to the wharf to pick up the launching trolley and bring it back along the narrow path.

At 4pm the Club put on a Morrocan style stew and couscous with a grand selection of cheeses and Bruce and Sticky had yet more discussions about  ISO issues.

 

HMS Wilton is such a great clubhouse, full of character and of course a nice bar. 

As the afternoon wore on Stick and I checked into a guesthouse in Southend on Sea and then had a few more beers at a local pub where they laid on both the European football final and some high quality kareoke.

Sunday came, more walking between the wharf where the car and trailer were and the Essex Yacht Club, but never the less, on this occasion we got to the start area in good time, pity we were then last over the start line (Ben Ainslie tactic failed miserably for Team Serenity).

Once more Jonny and Bugsy and George and Jeff fought over the lead after George had gone for an early swim before the start. Nick and his brother Dave did a great job and moved up to third place. The two youngsters in 1044 were sailing well in the increasingly windy conditions blowing off shore and swirling around the buildings along the coast. Stick and I had a good start in the final race; we were up amongst it all at the windward mark, a perfect hoist and jibe but then disaster struck, the spinny fell into the water due to the halyard becoming detached. We spent a while scooping the red sea anchor into the boat before continuing with 2 sails. A near death roll experience was thankfully overcome. Apparently, Bruce and Steve also had kite problems and as a result dropped through the field after a promising start to Sunday racing.

Stick and I sailed down to the wharf and thanks to Nick our trolley was brought down to us. We readied the boat for the road, walked back to the clubhouse (again), got showered and changed and…missed the prize giving! Unfortunately we didn’t miss the dubious task of writing the report and if it is left to me it ends up about nearly everything except the sailing, much as I enjoy it, the sailing is only part of the whole Open Meeting Adventure.

1st Jonny Wells and Bugsy = 1,1,1,3 net 3. ISO 674, wings Hydes
2nd George and Jeff Chambers = 2,2,2,1 net 5. ISO 1167, no wings Hydes
3rd Nick and Dave Veitch = 3,5,3,2 net 8. ISO 1197, no wings Hydes with Rooster main
4th Sticky and Miss Revitt = 4,3,5,5 net 12. ISO 1190, wings Hydes (on countback)
5th Bruce Bowler and Steve Harniman = 5,4,4,4 net 12. ISO 1178, no wings Hydes
6th Sam Warren and Andrew Stickland = 6,6,6,6. ISO 1044, wings Sobstads

Thank you to all at the EYC, I personally had a great time and enjoyed the change of scene from The Solent and Calshot Sailing Club.

Ali

 

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