The second day of Cowes racing showed us we're not quite AC material just yet.

Day 37 – Cowes Week Day 2

An interesting start for Official Business: ten minutes before the start we hoisted the headsail and immediately realised we hadn’t attached the sheets! Then we almost missed the course announcement because we were listening on the wrong channel. “A bit of a drama” was how Andy politely put it, but we made it to the line albeit at the wrong end and in less tide than the rest of the fleet.

The first leg was a long beat and unfortunately a few bad calls decisions lost us some more places. However a super slick spinnaker hoist restored masses of confidence, especially after yesterday’s mess. Whilst rounding the mark we were caught up in a shouting match with another yacht whose foredeck was adamant we should get out of the way even though they were the windward boat. I don’t think he was expecting a boat full of students to know the rules!

On the downwind leg we worked hard to keep the kite well trimmed and the boat powered up. Alongside us another boat broached and almost lost a crew member over the side. The next beat was particularly exciting for us as we started gaining ground on Foreign Affair, the other FF boat, which had made a much better start and read the tides well. It was really interesting to see how many places can be lost or gained just by minute changes in the tide.

The final spinnaker hoist went smoothly and we stormed down towards our final mark keeping clear of the other boats and in clean air. Unfortunately at the mark we were boxed out and lost our initial advantage. However we were glad not to be caught up on the inside track as we saw our first collision right in front of us. The last beat to the finish was really exhilarating as we match raced Foreign Affair, eventually losing out to them by 16 seconds!