Raymarine Warsash Spring Series' final race took place on Sunday but was dogged by light winds 26/4/06

The closing moments of this year’s Raymarine Warsash Spring Series took place on 23 April, with many class winners being decided on the final race, but all those raring to go had to wait patiently for a light breeze to fill in slowly from the south-east.

Entertainment was meanwhile provided by one of the crew on Tiger who gave a wake boarding demonstration and an SB3 determined to break the speed record for being towed by RIB! At 11am there was sufficient wind for the Black Group start sequence to commence. IRC1 suffered a general recall and this allowed IRC2 clear air for their first beat.

Cool Runnings and Playing Around were tied on 8 points going into the race. Their pre-start manoeuvres led to both of them, plus third placed Software Mistress, being over the line prematurely. Whilst Software Mistress was able to break away to the left, the two series leaders covered each other on the right, the net result of which found them well down the fleet. Jack Pringle’s IMX-40 Mankie took line honours although Cool Runnings was finally able to climb back to finish fourth on the water but first on handicap.

By midday, when IRC5 were starting, the wind had peaked at 8 knots but was starting to fade. After a long beat to the windward mark, Richard and Valerie Griffith’s Sigma 33 Cerefe rounded at the same time as Glyn Deaking helming his Fun One Design Funtastic 2. However, as the wind fell lighter over succeeding legs, only John Andrews in another Sigma 33 Shadowfax managed to reach the line before the time limit expired but those still racing were able to benefit from the ‘out of time’ points system introduced this year.

The restarted IRC1 fleet included the boats competing in the Big Boat Series and it was one of these, John Bainbridge’s beautiful Farr 45 Renaissance, which was fastest on the day. The next two boats, Nick Haigh’s DK46 Dark and Steamy and Jerry Otter’s Farr 45 Werewolf dead heated for second with John Shepherd in another new boat, the Ker 46 Fair Do’s VII just one second behind in third place. By the time the fleet reassembled for the second race of the day the wind had dwindled to 1.5 knots with a building tide. After a short interval, it was decided to abandon racing for the day.

There was also a lengthy early morning delay on the Sportsboat course. The 1720s were first away and Ruairidh Scott sailing King Quick, having won all four races in the Spring Championships the previous day, showed the others a clean transom to build a one minute lead. The SB3s had what has become their normal general recall and went to the back of the sequence. The runaway winner in the J/80s was Jimbob although series leader Just Savage did enough finishing sixth to keep the overall title.

When the Laser SB3s finally got away, there was a new face to be found on the winner’s stand. The Jennings, Hardie, Metherell combination on board Team Netgear had been improving throughout the series and they scored a first ahead of Geoff Carveth on Small but Steamy. Again the wind dwindled and curtailed the sailing programme for all but one class.

Warsash Sailing Club will be offering a warm welcome to all competitors for the Raymarine Warsash Spring Series, Spring Championships and Big Boat Series prize giving, which takes place at Shore House, Warsash on Friday 19 May at 8pm.