We did everything possible today to get a good result in the RANSA Winter Wednesday. Every surplus sail was removed from the yacht and left in the Greenwich Flying Squadron clubhouse for the afternoon. We set the larger of our two radial cut carbon genoas and pre race adjusted sheet cars to the best position for light air beating. Even the crew bags were moved to the forward cabin to get the bow down and the fat stern out of the water.

Due to the lack of wind the race was postponed and during this period we lost track of the start time. Agrovation was kind enough to call down the time so we could restart our watches and in return we let them into the line at the start boat but not Amanti who was too high on the line. Allegro started well a few boats widths to leeward so we were able to pull well below Agrovation and work into clear air.
The boat end was the right place to start and once in front of Agrovation we had only Allegro to leeward and ahead to contend with. For a long time we made very small gains and were working above the line of the mark so we pulled away a little and were surprised that Allegro started to pull away again. As the breeze headed we were back working and lifting above Allegro again and this time we broke through to have a clear ahead position going into the top mark. The leeward end of the line starters were punished by this late shift and never got up to the line of the mark.
We had eyes for no other boats at this stage as Allegro was only a few boat lengths behind and doing just as well on the broad reach. I worked up to Allegro’s line even though we did not want to go too close to Steele Point just to have the same breeze and that worked for a while until we reached Steele Point and Allego went where we would not dare to go. For a while their momentum kept them moving ahead while we slowed to leeward but once into the wind shadow they stopped and as the wind came over the hill we restarted sooner and were able to lift up into a clear ahead position aiming for the finishing boat at the Rose Bay mark.
We did get the gun for the first time this season and were pretty pleased with our effort. The extra 4 m2 in the larger genoa seemed to help to windward. The foot sweeps the deck more closely that the smaller one and that might contribute to the windward performance. It was our breeze with the wind rarely getting above 7 knots and at that we were close to our heel angle.

Joli had been close behind Allegro reaching back to Steele Point but seemed to get caught in the wind shadow and slipped a little further back but still close enough to take 3rd place despite her large handicap. Agrovation had the best start of the day at the boat and hung on for a fifth place on handicap.
We did take the handicap honours from Allegro and Joli but by my calculations these were No 2 and No 1 on the handicap leader board and our 1 and 2 points gains respectively not enough. Larrikin was not in the fleet today which just proves there is a reward for attendance. And what a reward it was with the rain holding off until the sails were packed away for the day and the race committee shortening the course at the appropriate time.

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