Island Fling and Menenes scored a first and second place in their respective classes in light and fickle conditions at the Swan European Regatta on 12 June
Island Fling and Menenes scored a first and second place in their respective classes in light and fickle conditions at the Swan European Regatta on 12 June. Both had tacticians of considerable pedigree calling the shots. On board Menenes Olympic Bronze medallist and GBR Challenge designer Jo Richards read the breeze perfectly, as did David Howlett, coach to Olympic Gold medallist Iain Percy, aboard Island Fling.
At the end of day three, Jacobite and Menenes are leading their respective classes with Menenes holding 14-point advantage in the quest for the overall trophy. At this stage it appears that the Swan European champion, the yacht with the lowest aggregate score across the two classes, is destined to come from the smaller fleet. Menenes leads the way with 10 points from French entry Saga, while both are looking over their shoulder at previous regatta leader Xaossa. Xaossa currently lies in fourth place despite posting a 25th in yesterday’s first race, a result that the team are hoping will be their discard at the end of the week.
After a two-hour delay to wait for the wind, the first race of the day got underway in an eight-knot easterly breeze. Crackerjack again led the fleet away having timed the start perfectly. However, it was her archrival Spirit of Jethou that rounded the windward mark first, the first time that Island Fling has not led around each mark of the race course this week.
On the downwind leg, the wind gods wreaked havoc on the course causing with a 180-degree windshift turning the run into a beat. The situation benefited the larger Swans as the smaller yachts struggled to cross the finish in the decreasing breeze.
Spirit of Jethou lost line honours by inches to Island Fling, but won the first race on handicap. Island Fling went one better in race two, winning from Jacobite.
In the smaller fleet, it was Menenes who once again led from start to finish. Tactician Jo Richards chose the right-hand side of the course on the downwind leg, gybed on the heading breeze and held the wind until 20 yards from the finish to win line honours and on corrected time. With a second place in race two, Menenes now takes the overall lead in this year’s Swan European Regatta.
Big boat class
1st Jacobite – 7,3,12,2 – 24 points
2nd Island Fling – 8,13,2,1 – 24 points
3rd Spirit of Jethou – 2,12,1,10 – 25 points
Small boat class
1st Menenes – 2,5,1,2 – 10 points
2nd Saga – 3,1,2,12 – 18 points
3rd Sloop John T – 10,14,3,1 – 28 points