On the 9th October 2021 Hunts SC, home of class chair Paul Jefferies, finally got to hold a D-Zero open meeting. After the meeting was scuppered by weed in 2019 and Covid in 2020 this year looked like it should be a good event. With generous sopnsorship from The Surrey Copper Distllery company what could go wrong?
Well it seems like the wind gods didn’t get the order for a nice F3-4 all day. The Sun gods did and once the wind cleared it was a glorious autumnal day but with very light winds.
Sadly this deterred any visitors, it seems a nice bottle of gin does not tempt people to travel…
6 locals did turn out though and, after a short delay, race 1 started in a zephyr. Jon Copwer made the best start and led by a small margin at the windward mark with the remaining 4 boats a fair way behind. Jon then decided to stop on the next leg and leg Paul drift slowly around him to a lead he never looked like losing despite the wind zehpyrs coming from random directions. At the gun it was Paul from Jon with Gary putting his light airs skills to good use to come home 3rd.
Race 2 Jon again got a good start and, in the best breeze of the day, did a horizon job leaving the rest of us to battle things out. Gary held second for a while, Paul fought back through, then Abby decided she fancied getting in on the action. It was snakes and ladders for the entire race with Paul eventually managing to sneak past Gary to take second with Kevin, Abby and Will coming down the last leg in a slow moving raft.
Was that to be it? Would Paul lose on countback again? It would appear not at Race Office John Coppenhall decided we had not had enough and took us back out to try and get a third race in. The meeting would be decided on which of the front 2 crossed the line first. Jon didn’t help himself by managing to be early and hit the pin mark. Advantage Paul. The wind had other ideas though with Gary and Will finding the merest breath to carry them to the windward mark, Abby in 3rd, Paul behind and Jon plum last. Abby left a huge gap at the mark letting Paul in to put a boat between him and Jon. Will decided to stop, then reverse on the next leg giving Paul another place to set off and try to chase down Gary. Jon managed to sneak past both Abby and Will and was hot on the transom of Paul. Over the next lap Gary kept his lead using his light air skills to good effect. Jon just couldn’t get on terms with Paul. On the penultimate leg Gary made a mistake sailing off free and Paul managed to get another of the zehpyrs to carry him past into the lead. Just the final leg to go. Paul managed to hold on down the final leg despite the wind doing circles to take the gun by less than a boat length from Gary with a fast closing Jon claiming 3rd.
This gave Paul the meeting from Jon and Gary with Abby being the first lady.
In the warm Autumn sunshine Paul thanked the sponsor and all the volunteers for their time and effort to get the meeting run despite the conditions.