Well I mentioned variety a few weeks ago - certainly had that! Last weekend was fun - 2000 Millenium Series at Chichester Yacht Club. I always enjoy sailing round while Clare moves the trolley - this as no exception. All the more fun to be greeted by the kids, still in kit after Martlets training. Polypro and Aquafleece keeping them toasty and comfortable under the wetsuit. Tight dinghy racing in light airs: they were brilliant and we got an 8, 10, 4. Clare sailed on Sunday, and a 3,2,2 elevated us to third overall (thanks to some high scores elsewhere as well).
Before that I was at the Scottish Series on a J111. An Army crew means we don't know each other before we get on board which can be challenging....but we generally soon pull together. We had a 38 mile passage race to tarbert mainly downwind in light airs: a ropey start was followed by pulling through to third. But then the breeze did a Scottish Loch shut down and we were caught and passed. The fleet racing proved tough: big boats can't tack too often - and we just couldn't hold a lane upwind. Really hard, especially on a flat track with very few shifts or wind differences across the course. We held the back of the fleet up! But with a little less breeze on the last day we got the boat moving properly to take a 7th and then to win the last race by a minute (beating all 3 of the Scottish Commodore's Cup team, which was nice!). This is the first time when someone has said 'she's just a big dinghy' that I've actually felt there was some truth in it! And I think the big difference on the last day was twisting her up a bit more, rather than shutting the leeces down like a big heavy lead mine yacht.
Anyway it was a useful reminder of how the south coast breeze rules I'm used to don't really apply among the steep sided lochs. And a good learner on the boat before the Three Peaks Yacht Race starting this weekend. I've done this once before - clearly 3 years is long enough to forget the pain: http://www.threepeaksyachtrace.co.uk/index.php
. I'm due to run up Snowdon and Ben Nevis in the Tilman Trophy for all rounders! The forecast is looking good (mainly southerly) and I'm feeling reasonably ready. I plan to post here with race updates as internet signals allow. You can follow what 's going on with Yellow Brick trackers (http://yb.tl/threepeaks2014
). This year we have to wear trackers as runners too....so you'll be able to see how we get on there too. Lots of my Rooster gear going with me for a bit of warmth. Polypro makes a great yachting base layer....and looks very natty with a pair of shorts!