Airlie race week

Its been a mixed week, with 3 beautiful sunny days at the start of the week, and rainy since lay day. We had hoped to get the relaxation flotation station into action on the lay day, but it was not to be. Instead, full boat covers, and most of us tucked up below. I went and got a massage in the afternoon, then got back to the boat and cooked up a roast lamb dinner for us 4 liveaboards. It was devine, and also meant an early night.

Rain and squalls continued all night, leading to a question on whether racing would go ahead. It was pretty windy, averaging about 25 knots with puffs up around 30 knots. However at 11 am, the race committee announced a “short” course for limited divisions and sent us off on yet another 27 miles of very hard work. We decided not to test the spinnaker as it is our only one, but still saw speeds up to 14 knots, with 2 reefs and the heady.

We did pay the price, however, blowing the heady halyard, having to pull the sail down and change to the other halyard. We also saw some chafe on both main and heady, blew the casing on a heady sheet, and separating the foil from the forestay. We ended up 10th, which was not bad.

Back at the dock, Pete had to head up the mast to remouse the halyard and check the forestay. We decided to leave the rest until the morning.

We all went to Sorrento for dinner, which was really nice, and then us quiet ones headed back to the boat for a nightcap of Pedro Ximinez. This was fortunate as we had a very early call to race at 10, an hour earlier than usual, for which we were unprepared. We ended up heading out to the start with Tony still splicing the heady sheet, and the heady on deck.

We had to race with all key halyards on the same winch, as well as the first reef, which we had in until the final beat to home. Larissa sailed with us in Pit, giving Al a day off to look after Cooper. So James moved to main and I did trim with Trent and flew the kite. It was a hard day with a million tacks down the coast, then a screaming kite run up the side of North and South Molle. On the run, Pete broke my trip speed record, hitting 15.6 knots on the spinnaker gybe! It was pretty exciting.

Best of all we had some sun, even though we had periodic showers, so it was much more pleasant than the previous day. As we had left the dock without beers, we sent Richard ashore for beers on the way back to the dock. Shore party of Al and Cooper joined us for gin and tonic and rum and coke as we finally had time to relax after racing!

No pics from the last few days sorry, but as its the last day tomorrow, I will do my best to get some pics.

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