With no other club activities planned for Easter Good Friday, Ripon Sailing Club’s Dragonforce 65 owners decided that it would be an ideal opportunity to organise some racing for this popular class of radio controlled model yachts. Plans were made, DF65 owners from other local clubs were invited and the weather forecast was kept under close observation.
What an inspired choice of date it turned out to be, with sunshine and a mainly 12 to 14mph breeze all day long. Not typical Bank Holiday weather at all. Six RSC helms were joined by 15 visitors from other Clubs and a full programme of 12 races was held. Sailing conditions by the Clubhouse, where the course was laid, were not always straightforward. Regular shifts and a few squalls and holes in the wind provided variety along with some quite unpredictable headers that regularly confused those trying to judge the layline into the windward mark.
No fewer than six different helms won at least one race each and though the eventual top three overall had the more consistent string of results, all of them had a number of races that did not go entirely to plan. An oscillating wind meant that the port end of the start line was favoured, but it did get very crowded at times! Much depended on keeping out of trouble at the start and sticking to the left side of the beat in the expectation of getting a port tack lift to the mark. Some learned this lesson sooner than others while some never did learn it, and it showed in the results.
The course was re-laid during the afternoon to take account of a changing wind direction, resulting in the need to re-assess the best way around. Again some latched on to this more quickly than others, proving that there’s no substitute for experience and that time on the water holds just as much value for model yachters and it does for those who sail bigger boats.
The event came to a close with prizes for the top five and spot prizes for others throughout the fleet.
Full results available here – Results