A quite day for competitors racing in week 6 of the Garmin Hamble Winter Series yesterday 13/11/06

A westerly breeze of 5 to 10 knots and a weaker than normal Solent tidal stream provided relatively undemanding conditions for the 13 classes competing in the Garmin Hamble Winter Series yesterday.

Among the White Fleet classes, Stewart Bowen-Davies’s Windsong remained on top of IRC 0 by beating the Farr 45 Fraxious on handicap, while in IRC 1 the two J/133s of Stewart Hawthorn and Neil Martin traded places for the overall lead when Jump won and Jammy Dodger finished third behind Ian Maclean’s Ker 36 Software Mistress.

In IRC 2 Peter Howland’s X-Dream won, but Peter Rutter’s consistency in Quokka kept him in the lead when he finished second. Jim Macgregor in the 2005 Garmin Yacht of the Year Flair IV did well to recover to third after having to return to the start, and is no doubt looking forward to discarding a 12th from Race 4 which is currently holding him back in fourth position.

Marie-Claude and Paul Heys reeled off another first in their J/92S Java Lite and they have gradually pulled out a three point lead in IRC 3, despite the fact that Ian Dawson in the X-332 Glide-Ex is also sailing very consistently. Paul and Julia Aisher rediscovered their winning form today, but G. Fairhall’s Corby 25 Brightwork came second to retain the lead in IRC 4.

Simon Curwen’s Voador won the J/105 race today from David and Kirsty Apthorp’s J-Dream, but consistency is the key and Paul Griffiths leads the class overall in Fay-J despite not having won a race so far. Zelda sailed by Ben Richards and Michael Ewart-Smith continues to lead the J/109s after coming second behind Philip Smith’s Firestorm in today’s race.

The Sigma 33 class was remarkably thin on the ground, with Adrian Brown’s Odalisque the only finisher after Shadowfax had to use her engine when she ran aground early in the race. The Sigma 38s were more plentiful, and the surprise of the day came when the Meakins Family lost their unblemished record in Festina Lente by coming second to Chris and Vanessa Choules’ With Alacrity.

On the White Fleet courses, the large Hunter 707 class was made to take notice when Simon Law and Chris Eddy, sailing Sword for the first time in the series, had the best score of the day with a third and a first. Messrs Gorman, Williams, Breslin and Simmonds also did well in Censored with a second and a third, but the consistency of Ed Hipkin in Sharkin Mad keeps him in the lead overall.

The unique thing about the J/80 class is that not a single boat in the fleet of ten has sailed in every race of the series. Perhaps they have other interests, but they certainly enjoy good racing and their scores are still remarkably close. Liz Savage sailing Savage Racing Team did best with a first and a third, but Robert and Jonathan Fox lead overall in Jevan.

Another Fox, this time James, who sails Royal Thames Lucky Lady, leads overall in the largest fleet of all, the Laser SB3s. It has to be said that Mike Budd and Russell Peters, who had won 6 of the 8 races prior to yesterday’s race, did not compete, and the sheer numbers racing in the class resulted in their score increasing from 22 to 122 in their absence, dumping them down to fifth overall. However, providing they turn up from now on, you would certainly not put your money on them losing the series. Geoff Carveth, who will definitely not do well overall as he has already missed six out of ten races, showed how to do it today by finishing first and second in Palava.

The SBR Sportsboats class saw Ian Atkins’ run of six consecutive victories in the Cork 1720 Boats.com brought to an end by David Greenhalgh in another Cork 1720 G & T. However, Ian still leads overall from Richard Scarff in one of the Backman 21s Backbeat.

Results – Garmin Hamble Winter Series, Week 6
White Fleet Race Winners

Laser SB3 Race 1, Palava Geoff Carveth. Race 2, Badger Racing P. Lovejoy
J/80 Race 1, Savage Racing Team Liz Savage. Race 2, Justify Jeffrey Dakin & Bruce Jubb

Hunter 707 Race 1, This is Jeff Harry Hall. Race 2, Sword Simon Law & Chris Eddy
SBR Sportsboats Races 1 & 2, G & T David Greenhalgh

Black Fleet Race Winners
IRC 0 Windsong Stuart Bowen-Davies
IRC 1 Jump Stewart Hawthorn
IRC 2 X-Dream Peter Howland
IRC 3 Java Lite Marie-Claude & Paul Heys
IRC 4 Tangent Minus 1 Paul & Julia Aisher
J/105 Voador Simon Curwen
J/109 Firestorm Philip Smith
Sigma 33 Odalisque Adrian Brown
Sigma 38 With Alacrity Chris Choules & Vanessa Choules