Wednesday Afternoons – Nigel’s Blog

16th September

After the glories of last week, it was obviously too much to hope for a repeat. This time the weather conspired against us.  XC gave a breezy 16-21mph forecast, but the waves breaking on the shore in the rather brisk NNE wind told a different story. Never mind,  Chris Clarke and Peter Gee were game to have a go. By the time they left the line the wind was in the 22-25kt range, with some bigger gusts just to liven it up. Chris demonstrated the advantages of being able to use a 4.7 rig and led throughout the 1 lap race. The reach was awesome, and he never looked troubled. Meanwhile Peter was experiencing a few issues with a tangled mainsheet and a rudder that refused to stay down, no matter how hard he pulled on the downhaul. If the rope had actually been attached to the rudder, pulling hard might have worked.

With more wind coming through, common sense prevailed and racing ended.

Next week Richard and Peter will be the starting team, when hopefully the wind will be more amenable.

9th September

Seven enthusiastic sailors arrived for the first of the Wednesday afternoon racing sessions.

Blue sky, bright sunshine, 12-15kt, this is exactly what we wanted.  Three short races, run from the shore were slotted in using exotic marks like ‘that little pink buoy up there’ [a debate on the colour followed], the green yacht up there and mooring buoy just off the jetty as well as nearby club marks.  The aim was to keep the legs short to keep the boats together. Lap times in each race were 10mins, 13 mins and 6 mins, allowing race lengths of 30, 26 and 27 mins.  The start line was from flagpole 1 to a moored yacht, the sequence a simple 3-2-1-GO. No flags, no OCS, just keep it simple. An OCS boat will receive a 1 minute penalty…unless it starts more than 1 minute early, in which case the helm will be keel hauled.

There were battles through the 7 boat fleet, notably between Robbie and Barrie at the front, Richard and Pete in the middle and Colin and Steve further back.

Do come and join us. There is no need to sign on, just meet at flagpole 1 between 2.45pm 3pm for a quick briefing, remaining 2 m apart and no more than 6 at a time.

Lisa and her team are on hand to sell you pre-race cake and tea, so try and arrive in time to take advantage of this. If enough people want to have meals afterwards and let her know beforehand, she can do them. So, come and sail and support our wonderful café team; we would be lost without them.

Next weeks starting team is Barrie and Pete.



Helm Boat R1 R2 R3
Robbie Laser 1 2 1
Barrie Laser 2 1 2
Jason Laser 3 4 5
Richard Europe 4 5 3
Pete Laser 5 3 4
Colin Radial 6 6 6
Steve Radial 7 7 7


3rd September

Our wonderful lake lies mostly empty on Wednesday afternoons once the evening racing has finished, yet September and October often have terrific weather for sailing.

We have a large number of members who could continue racing on Wednesdays at earlier times.

We are going to hold a fun racing session on Wednesday afternoons during September and October, beginning on September 9th.  This is open to all, and offers a chance for the less experienced to practice those racing skills.

There will be 2 or 3 [depending on demand] approx. 35 minute races.   First start will be at 15.30 preceded by a short briefing at 15.00 [socially distanced of course] at flagpole 2 to set the course and the start line.

The start line will be shore based to reduce the duty team size.

Courses will be small, to keep boats together, with the emphasis on fun – just like the Sociable Saturdays.

Once we get through the first week, participants will be asked to volunteer for duties before taking part in racing.  These will be 1 or 2 people [2 preferred] as starter/finisher team, and 1 or 2 in a RIB [driver needs PB2 qualification].  Nigel Denchfield will organise the duty rota, contact him on

Lisa will be on hand to sell you tea and cake and if required can do simple meals afterwards.

Do come and join us if you can and keep the club active.

Nigel Denchfield