Our friends on Izzi sailed the Wednesday twilight race remarkable well. By good luck or canny choices thy carried a larger genoa while we had our smaller No 3 up for the windy conditions at the start. We still had the reef in the mainsail from last week and opted to leave it there for the gusty trip through Humbug. We were a bit under powered in the sheltered area around the start line but once into Humbug we managed to match Worlds Apart and take an early lead. Saoirse was sailing fast in the stronger winds and having a great battle with Worlds Apart but they both overstood the turn to Cockatoo Island and we stretched out our lead a little. We probably lost a little on the corner as we had to pinch hard and slow to clear the dock by an arms with. This was the first of three close shaves on the evening and we were considering renaming Passion after one of those razor brands. The next close shave was at the navigation mark on Balls Head. Tana and two Etchells were below us and we could see that they would need to tack onto port to avoid running aground. We had a Young 88 just ahead so it was quite crowded conditions. When Tana and the two Etchells tacked we opted to take their sterns and try to clear the point on starboard tack but Tana stalled and we were forced to make a big deviation around her stern which took us below the point. We hung on and pinched to just clear the point but the deviation and slow sailing brought Izzi right up to us. In the light conditions around Balls Head Izzi was powering along and had now passed Worlds Apart and Saoirse who were having a very close battle to leeward as we approached the Navigation mark at Goat Island. We took out the reef for the run back to Long Nose as the wind was moderating. We lead around Goat Island but once into the clear air Izzi poled out their large Genoa and powered past. The carried the poled out Genoa very high and managed to sail through our lee and from there with more sail area sailed faster to the finish.
We could see Worlds Apart and Saoirse not far behind as we crossed the line. We were happy with our result considering the condition and were pleased that Izzi had sailed so well for a first and fastest.
Back at the club ML and her team put on another great BBQ and the light drizzle could not dampen the spirits on the deck. With the first three handicap place getters opting not to stay for the BBQ and presentation we were the first to the prize table for another bottle of wind from one of our sponsors.

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