Musto Skiff

Lymington Town Sailing Club Open 2012 Bookmark and Share

Report Dave Poston

10 mustos met at Lymington Town Sailing Club for an open shared with the D-one nationals. We were met with the forecast 1 knot of wind on Saturday - a forecast that had perhaps reduced the numbers somewhat.
However a great event was in store - it just didn't look like it on arrival!

The race officer postponed on shore for a short while then made a skilful call to send us out into the only breeze that appeared that day, managing to get 2 light wind races in 4-8 knots of breeze with little waiting around.

On the course the choice was to go left into more wind or go right out of the tide, with neither side paying consistently resulting in plenty of place changing. Keeping the head out of the boat was top priority!
In race one Jamie Morgan got a great start and sailed well to take the win ( congrats on his first 'official' race win at an event! ). Behind him Nigel Walbank and Dave Poston were looking good for 2nd and 3rd until they failed to spot a shift and breeze on the left allowing Jamie Hilton and Ben Schooling to come past and finish 2nd and 3rd.

Race two and Jamie Morgan showed that his starting tactic was to use a buoy several boatlengths to windward of the line as his private pin end, and unfortunately it didn't pay off this time. The ensuing individual recall caused some confusion amongst the rest of the fleet that hadn't spotted the stray musto and several boats went back unnecessarily. Once again the shifts upwind were key with Schooling making the best of it to take the win, followed by Hilton and Poston.

The breeze was fading fast at this point so the fleet was sent ashore to get an early start with the beers for the social event that evening, which was thoroughly enjoyed by all - getting a group of gruff musto sailors onto the dance floor is no mean feat!

Sunday dawned with 3 issues - 1) A sense of having enjoyed the night before a bit too much 2) Being short of a few races so rigging up at
8.30 to make up for it 3) No wind. However the breeze filled in and then some, and all problems were solved in what turned out to be perfect blasting conditions.

Race 3 got underway in a slowly building 5-10 knots of breeze. Without the extra wind on the left, the right hand side was paying to get out of the tide, and local sailor (and excellent host) Nigel Walbank showed the fleet the way round to win followed by Hilton and Schooling.

Race 4 had both the sun and the wind which was now in the 12-15 knot region. Right was obviously paying with 3 or 4 boats starting on port on the biased line to try and get there first. Hilton made the best of it and lead from start to finish, with Schooling, Webber and Poston battling it out behind, with Poston and Webber finishing 2nd and 3rd.

In Race 5 things were starting to get a bit spicy and Poston blasted off into a commanding lead. Capsizes were starting to happen with most of the fleet stopping for a quick dip at some point. Despite a capsize at the leeward gate Poston held on to the lead with Schooling and Webber behind.

20 knot+ gusts were starting to appear in Race 6 and keeping things together downwind was key. Poston rounded the windward mark first followed by Hilton, Webber, Schooling and Sergei Samus but couldn't make the gybe in the 2-lap race giving Hilton the lead. On the next downwind Hilton failed at the first gybe giving the lead back to Poston. Poston then snatched defeat from the jaws of victory with a capsize 20 yards from the finish leaving Samus - the only one of the bunch not to have swum downwind - to take a well deserved win. Another well done goes to skiff newcomers Mark Cooper and Simon Kitchen who experienced their 'musto initiation' of racing in 20 knots and survived to tell the tale!

With the breeze building and sailors tiring a 7th race was called off and we were sent home to reflect on a great event - a mixed bag of conditions, a different winner for every race, great racing and a great social, what more could you ask for? Well done to Jamie Hilton for keeping things consistent enough for the overall win, and thanks very much LTSC!

1st Jamie Hilton
2nd Ben Schooling
3rd Dave Poston

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