Dragon Flagon Race 1 Saturday 28th May
6 dragons sailed a well set course on Saturday 28th May with a long beat to MYA1 via 30, 28 and 26. Then a second beat to MYA1 from 26. Very light patchy winds from the SE and NE made for close racing in an ebbing tide.
The beating start saw those furthest from the club gain initial advantage including SUTI (Toby and Ivor) and Whistle (Wendy, Caroline and Jamie). Gandalf (Edwin, Kerry and Alisdair) recovered from a poor start at unfavoured end of line to lead at Buoy 26 from Whistle. But Whistle managed to cross over the river before a ship passed through and built up a big lead as all the remaining boats could not and they were becalmed but drifting with the tide towards MYA1, including Tempest (David, his sons and Kelly) and Molly (John, his son and James). OCD (Chris, David and Kevin) went in search of wind on the Hoo side but this proved disastrous as the wind filled in from the Darnet side. So much so that Tempest caught Whistle and took the lead at MYA1 but this was short lived because they went out into the tide on the run. Fortunately for OCD the wind filled in from behind and it allowed them to catch up.
However, Whistle sailed the second beat well and gained as the wind veered 20 degrees. OCD managed to squeeze round in front of Tempest at MYA1 the second time to round in second. But Whistle had built up an unassailable lead. As before, the run against the tide favoured those crews who could gybe quickly and respond to the large shifts. OCD’s experienced teamwork allowed them to pull ahead of the chasing pack. SUTI managed to pull through to third.
Whistle won by a large margin at the new self-finishing line at Medway Cruising Club’s transit. OCD managed to hold off a challenge from SUTI to take second despite a run in the shallow water alongside Hoo Island against the tide and being threatened by their wind shadow.
Final result: 1st Whistle 2nd OCD 3rd SUTI 4th Tempest 5th Gandalf 6th Molly.