Demanding time for crews

The BASC Icicle series lived up to its reputation last Sunday with a black squall and lightening dispersing boats soon after the start of the first races.

The BASC Icicle series lived up to its reputation last Sunday with a black squall and lightening dispersing boats soon after the start of the first races.

In the handicap race, Richard Deller and Ben Mclean in Cuddles ploughed back into the fleet after having to return to the line, catching up at the first mark just as hard rain and hail ferociously pummelled down. And they soon managed to move into second position behind Ryan Langston in his Laser PDQ as most of the shell-shocked sailors grappled with the sheets to keep control.

Unbelievably, within 15 minutes, the wind had almost evaporated - leaving the stragglers fighting the tide down at No 4 buoy resulting in six retirements as crews paddled back to the clubhouse in frustration.

With Ryan and Richard eventually finishing one-two, third place fell to Bob Playle and Graham Alden in their GP14 who, after one and a half hours and great perseverance, crossed the line to much applause - just in time for the start of the second race.

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The Topper fleet encountered a similar fate with the squall smashing into them on their start and with three retirements due to the later elusive wind, Ollie Baylis, Hugh Braidwood and Jake Smalls were lucky to be the right side of the finishing line as only the ebbing tide pushed them home to take first, second and third respectively.

With no Oppies completing their first race for the same reasons, it was welcome relief when the club pennant unfurled, indicating a light breeze.

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Dave Gentry and Jackie Soards in their Ent Chippas Delight must have thought they had it in the bag as they kept up with Langston in his Laser over two rounds but never far behind, the Commodore in Cuddles made his move soon after gybing round the last mark to pass Gentry and win on handicap over the laser.

Race two for the Toppers had only three boats on the water so all were able to accrue useful points, Jake Smalls battling hard, beating Hugh Braidwood to the line by just a few seconds leaving Charlie Folkard in third position. Rowan Curtis continues his good form to win in the optimist race with Poppy Roll not far behind well deserving her second place.

Icicle Shield race one (9): 1 PDQ (R Langston), 2 Cuddles (R Deller/B Mclean), 3 Andiamo (B Playle/G Alden).

Goodwin Trophy race one (8): 1 Wonkey Donkey (O Baylis), 2 Tic Tac (H Braidwood), 3 Tip Top (J Smalls).

Icicle Shield race two (9): 1 Cuddles, 2 Chippas Delight (D Gentry/J Soards), 3 PDQ.

Goodwin Trophy race two (3): 1 Tip Top, 2 Tic Tac, 3 Charlie (C Folkard).

Optimist Popsicle Plate (4): 1 Bittern (R Curtis), 2 Club Oppy (P Roll), 3 Robin Hood (G Curtis).

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