AKA ‘Careful What You Wish For’
‘Wanna come and freeze your assets off?’ I said, in an email to our sturdy 2.4mR group, in mid January, when Victoria was bathed in spring-like temperatures. ‘Sign up! It’ll be fun.’ Then a few days before the regatta Victoria received its biggest dump of snow in 40 odd years and John and myself were trapped in the house, let alone capable of getting to any regatta… Fortunately the melt came quickly, the temperature-rise less so, so getting kitted out required the full 2.4mR regalia of multiple layers, wrist-seals, neck-seals, toques, spare-toques and of course (‘every time you go to sea,’ as Louise Anstey astutely noted) sunglasses.
With seven entries our fleet was second in size only to the Radials, and joined by Chris Maier from CFSA, his first time racing the boat. On Saturday the wind looked classic Victoria ‘light and fluky’ but actually settled down to a decent SW-ish and we had six excellent races with Louise giving me and Doug Bell some lessons in what we should and (mostly) shouldn’t be doing. With all classes racing on the same course everyone had to be hyper-aware – a 49er needs a lot of room from our slim wee 2.4s at the leeward mark… Louise won the day with excellent tight racing. On Sunday it was cold and clear with a brisk northerly, waves, strong current and COLD. Oak Bay was a fine sight with the snowy mountains circling us, skiffs flying around (and some swimming…) and even tighter racing in the 2.4mR fleet, with overlapped finishes and a stellar bullet for Delani Hulme-Lawrence. Louise won the event with Jackie second and Doug third, but the real winner was our fleet which can only improve with such tight, competitive racing and new participants. Thanks to the Race Committee for sterling work managing all the fleets; the coaches for encouragement, food and dry clothing; and all the sailors who made this event a real spectacle and a whole lot of fun.