The winds returned with a vengeance today as squalls up to 32 knots produced one of the most exciting day's racing in recent years on the second day of the Bell Lawrie Scottish Series

After a set of unsatisfactory opening races on Friday at The Bell Lawrie Scottish Series on Loch Fyne the winds returned with a vengeance today as squalls up to 32 knots produced one of the most exciting day’s racing in recent years.

Tonight it is the sailmakers who are contemplating a long night burning the midnight oil as they struggle to cope with the demand for repairs. Gear and sail failures were commonplace today as the full south-westerly and westerly winds taxed crews’ strength and skills to the limits.

Two days into the series and the emotional rollercoaster that has been the regatta so far for John Corson and the crew of Salamander XVIII hit the buffers when the mast of their Bavaria Match 38 toppled over the side as they approached the leeward mark of the second race.

They were just cranking in the sails to round the mark when there was a crack and the mast fell over the side. It is not clear whether a failure of an intermediate shroud or possibly too much vang caused the failure. It is a huge disappointment for the Clyde crew who have won most of the major regattas since last year, including the preliminary Kip Regatta two weeks ago. They won Friday’s first race and were a lap ahead for the second race on Friday when the race ran out of time. This morning they were in the money throughout after a great first beat and went on to win. Even with two wins in IRC Class 2 things were shaping up well but their regatta is at an end.

Their subsequent retirement leaves Peter Rutter and the south coast crew of the Elan 37 Quokka on top of the 23 boat IRC Class 2, which probably has the greatest strength and depth of the 15 classes racing here. The Swan 45 class made an unanimous decision not to brave the conditions. With bigger and more important regattas looming large on their itineraries, including next month’s Swan European Cup in Cowes, then this was not a hard choice.

In IRC Class 1 it is Jonathan Anderson’s big First 47.7 Playing FTSE which is leading overall. Anderson, the only skipper to have won the event’s top trophy three times, scored a first and a second today to head the 14 boat division by a clear seven points. A fourth and a third for Tim Costello’s brand-new Mills 40 Tiarmat leaves them third while Glyn Williams and the team on Wolf, the Farr 45 sailed to a second and fourth to lie third. Shirley Robertson and her Volvo RYA Keelboat Sailing crew were just one of the team’s to miss out on the second race due to gear failure. They broke the spinnaker pole and shed the bearings in their mainsheet track and so had to sit out the windiest second race.

With the breeze backing to the west with a big shift on the first beat for classes 1 and 2 this meant the course was slightly skewed but the benefit was that the swell dropped away as the lee of the Mull of Kintyre took effect.

In IRC Class 3 it is the well sailed Beneteau 33.7 of David Clark which holds a slender overall lead of just two points after a second and a fourth today. Some of the smaller sportsboat did not race today but the 1720 Cork One Designs did. Current holder of the Bell Lawrie Scottish Series Trophy Anthony O’Leary scored back to back wins and leads from Steve Goacher who had a fourth and second today.

Results (after 4 Races)

IRC Class 1: 1 Playing FTSE (J Anderson) 6 points, 2 Tiamat ( T Costello) 13, 3 Wolf (G Williams) 16

IRC Class 2: 1 Quokka (P Rutter) 10, 2 Jeronimo (Sinclair/Lowe) 11, 3 No Naked Flames 14

IRC Class 3: Eauvation 4 (D Clark) 16, 2 Bule Gila (D McFarland) 18, 3 Enigma (H&M Morrison) 21

IRC Class 4: 1 Checkmate (J Biggs) 10, 2 Significant (I Macdonald) 17, 3 RoBo (J Blair) 18

CYCA Class 6: 1 Zara of Doon (Lyall/Wilson) 11, 2 Tangle O’The Isles (J Gough) 12, 3 Piecemaker (J Hamilton) 14

CYCA Class 7: 1 Mosika Alma (M Goodwin) 2, 2 Kudos (D Syme) 4, 3 Emma Louise (S Lalor) 10

CYCA Class 8: Pointer (B Robertson) 3, 2 Upstart (E Thomas) 7, 3 Oyster of Ashton (G Deacon) 8

CYCA Restricted Class 9: 1 Prince of Tides (J Marrow) 5, 2 Pippa (F Gray) 10, 3 Lorca J (A Mill) 12

CYCA Restricted Sail Class 10: 1 Skibbereen (Pilkington/Anderson) 3, Zubenubi (B Waugh) 6, Siglet (C&M Craig) 7

Sigma 33 Class: 1 Fandango (Fair/Prentice/Byers) 9, 2 Sigmatic (D McLaren) 13, Sea-Pie of Cultra (J Colman) 13

National Sonata Class: 1 So (McLure/Stewart) 4, 2 Scruples (C Tait) 9, 3 Pied Piper (A Harper) 9

1720 Sportsboat: 1 Antix (A O’Leary) 3, 2 Goacher Sails (Goacher/Tunnicliffe) 8, 3 King Quick (G Scott) 12

Impala 28: 1 Bluestreak (C Hussey) 8, 2 Fly (P Duggan) 10, 3 Mersonary (Angus/Wallace) 11