Report courtesy John Newton and photos Dave Sellens
IOM Ranking 3
Saturday 17th June 2017 saw some 33 skippers arrive at Coalhouse Fort RYC for Round 3 of the IOM Ranking Series. The forecast for the day was very high temperatures and little or no wind from a westerly direction – not good.
Based on the number of competitors, the forecast prevailing conditions, and local knowledge, Race Officer Geoff Appleton decided to run three heats. And so with a wind that was constantly changing both in strength and direction, even during a race, racing got underway. The changing conditions not only made it extremely difficult to set a fair course, but also made it a challenge for the competitors in trying to find the wind.At times the wind would go from a good breeze to very little and even change direction during a race and so at times it was a lottery if a skipper was in the right place at the right time. Obviously with these conditions and the very high temperatures, clearly some people became quite frustrated but overall most competitors accepted the situation and got on with their racing.
Despite the conditions and frustrations there were only two protests were received one of which was a request for redress which was denied by the Protest Committee. The other in race 4, was based on a starboard boat having to take avoiding action on a Port boat, with the Port boat failing to take a penalty turn – the protest being upheld and the Port boat being disqualified.
From the start it became quite obvious it was going to be close and the eventual winner would be decided between, Peter Stollery, Colin Goodman, Tony Edwards and Rob Walsh. In fact going into the last race there were three skippers on 9 points, namely Peter, Colin and Rob. Because of the conditions, the last race of the day was very tight on the time limit and as a consequence, at the request of the majority of the ‘A’ heat skippers, the final ‘A’ heat was shortened to a one lap, which proved to be significant in defining the final positions.
IOM Ranking 4
Following round 3 of the IOM Ranking Series the previous day, round 4 took place on Sunday 18th June 2017 at Coalhouse Fort RYC under very similar conditions, except the temperature seemed slightly higher. Apart from that, the wind direction and strength yet again were a major factor on the days racing, creating major problems for both the Race Officer, Geoff Appleton and all the competitors.
Based on representation by the MYA Race Officer following discussions with the competitors and the Race Team, it was agreed that the event would be run with two heats, at least initially for the seeding races. Assuming these went OK the event as a whole would run with two heats, which actually happened.
As per the previous day, the temperature and changeable wind conditions caused some frustration amongst the competitors, but overall everybody was well behaved and the race team would like to thank everybody for their understanding with the decisions that needed to be taken. AT one point a sea breeze could be seen approaching the venue and so a decision was take to delay the start of the next race, which was explained to the competitors. Throughout the day there were many course changes which entailed moving from one end of the lake to the other and back again. But even this did not prevent changes in wind strength and direction during a race creating difficulties and frustration for competitors.
There was a protest/request for redress regarding the same incident, with the protest being dismissed and the request for redress being upheld.
Yet again, the top skippers showed their experience under very trying conditions, but it was Rob Walsh and Colin Goodman who were the obvious contenders with Rob eventually taking the win and Colin second followed by Josh King in third.
Thanks to all competitors and members of Coalhouse Fort RYC for their fortitude on another difficult day with difficult decisions having to be made.
Report courtesy John newton and photos Dave Sellens.