Dinner, auction, squalls and sun

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The Rye Harbour Sailing Club Commodore’s Dinner and Auction of Donations this year was held at the George on Friday September 30.

The RHSC Commodore, Caroline Wylson, writes: “Guests arrived to the sound of the Rye Bay Crew Band. The Benson room at the George was packed to capacity as everyone enjoyed a glass of wine that was included in the price of the three-course meal.

“After a delicious meal the auction itself was turned over to Kevin Wall, professional auctioneer from Rye Auction Galleries and through charm, wit and banter, by the end of a highly entertaining evening an amazing amount of £3,334 had been raised to go towards the RHSC Club House Development project. To date this is a record amount to raise at one of the RHSC auctions.

“I would like to thank everyone who was there on the night, members who donated items, members who gave up their time to advertise and set up the event, the RHSC social group, local businesses who donated some great items to auction, Kevin Wall who did a fantastic job and not least The George who let us hold the event in their Ball Room and Benson Room at no extra cost as well as providing a team to help set up the event. The George also generously donated a one-night stay at the hotel. A very well done to all.”

After such an evening, it is perhaps not too surprising that not too many boats turned up the following morning for the start of the Autumn Series for cruisers.

Just three arrived on the start line: Jemma (34ft), Close Encounters (31ft) and Limbo Girl (at 22ft the smallest boat in the fleet and the most consistent competitor). Officer of the Day (OOD) was Hugh Redman in Helena Anne.

Wet, chilly and with wind gusting up to force 6 with heavy squally showers and with the inevitable Rye Bay choppy sea to cope with, the day was a sure cure for any morning-after hangovers. Conditions were certainly difficult; Jemma retired leaving Limbo Girl to squeak in just one minute ahead of Close Encounters to take the first race of the series.

Race 2 on the Sunday brought not only a change of weather but also more competitors. Although Jemma didn’t race, Limbo Girl and Close Encounters were joined by Helena Anne (38ft) now released from OOD duties, Palamino (21ft) and Mystic Sky (32ft). OOD for this race was the 43ft Foo Fighter.

The previous day’s wind had reduced to a gentle (and, at times, too gentle) force 3 to 4 but still with the occasional gust to catch out the unwary and even the sun showed its face from time to time. With the sea noticeably flatter than the previous day, the course took the fleet Westwards towards Winchelsea Beach. Mystic Sky made a good start with Helena Anne just misjudging the wind strength and crossing the line behind the others although smart work by skipper and crew soon saw her begin to make up the deficit and move ahead of all but Mystic Sky who had established a good lead and was going well in the light conditions, to which the heavier Helena Anne was not so well suited.

The second leg was almost a dead run out to the Fairway Buoy followed by a nice reach (wind on the beam) back towards Camber. Mystic Sky was in sight but despite an interesting-looking broach caused by an unexpected gust, remained just too far ahead for Helena Anne to catch up. A chase back to the Rock Channel Marine buoy followed and finally back to the finish line with Mystic Sky maintaining her lead to finish two minutes ahead of Helena Anne. Close Encounters followed three minutes later and finally (Palamino having retired) Limbo Girl a further six minutes behind.

The next race is in 10 days’ time when, with autumn setting in, conditions might well prove more challenging.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo: John Minter

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