A lot has happened since our last race of 2019 at GFS. Chistmas has come and gone with the family at Ballina and Elaine and I enjoyed five days going to Refuge Bay for a quiet rest. Since then it has been pretty hectic with my Dad passing away in Perth after a very long and productive 98 years. The whole family was united in giving him a very appropriate send off and then quickly back to family and work.
As hard as a farewell may be it was good to remember the good times building boats with Dad and catch up with cousins and friends from years past as it has been 40 years since we have lived in Perth and for our children it was a rare chance to reconnect with family.

In the family moments there was a show of Edmiston competitiveness playing Catan with our grandson and various family members and just as in sailing frequent checking of the rule book.
So after a red eye special back from Perth it was into our first race of the 2020 year. I thought we performed quite well but the conditions were not conducive for a win due to our small handicap and the breeze being above our range at the start of the event.
The yachts that perform better in stronger winds did just that with the mighty Caliban winning by less than a minute from heavy air specialist Fireball and three minutes from the very fast finishing Joli with Sweet Chariot just 21 seconds later.
For us we had only Utopia starting three minutes behind and Jackpot starting five minutes behind to keep us company on the course.

We did stay close to Joli for a while but eventually with faster up wind performance they drew away. Utopia caught us mid race and then had trouble passing Joli who seemed to draw ahead in the closing stages of the race.
We did try cutting the corner on a couple of islands which while it looked promising at times did not work out well but we were playing catch up and it was worth trying for a change.

In the closing stages Jackpot powered up from behind making up some ground around Goat Island where we were having a last roll of the dice trying to catch Joli and Utopia.
After a long four island race we could see the handicap leaders working up Humbug to the finish but that was small consolation. We cannot give six minutes start to Caliban and eight minutes start to Fireball in those conditions where we are happy to just match them for speed. Next weeks forecast is looking a more favourable for Passion X so we will look forward to that.

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