Five Wetas arrived on a warm but windless Saturday morning but by the time all the boats were heading out, following the 40ft trimaran start boat to the start area, a light North Easterly had set in.
A course was laid across Pittwater from Mackerel Beach to Barrenjoey (becoming increasingly flukey near the windward mark as the day wore on) consisting of an offset triangle with a tight reach to a turning mark near the shore. The wind stayed light (7-9 knots) until after the finish.
The Wetas had their own start after a gaggle of Maricats, Hobies and others. In the first race, Peter Graham followed his form from Canberra and led by 10 boat lengths at the windward mark, hoisted his kite and set off for the leward mark, followed a short time later by Paul White and then the rest of the fleet.
Then Paul recalled that there was a turning mark and headed back after seeing the others heading for it - but when Peter realised he had missed the mark it was too late to go back. Paul rounded the turning mark which put him just behind the rest of the fleet and as he did so the tiller extension came detached from the tiller – he made a temporary fix and set off in pursuit. He passed Geoff Waldon and Peter Duross on the upwind leg. He closed on Dylon Bailey and his son who were struggling for speed downwind in the light wind and after a short tussle he managed to pass them to windward and gybe for the line – only to find the tiller extension had come off again and Dylon and son crept ahead as they crossed together.
The second race followed shortly after with a little more breeze and this time Peter Graham and Dylon Bailey crossed the fleet on Port to lead at the windward mark. Peter made no more mistakes and headed into the distance while the rest of the fleet tried to catch up, and he kept position to the end. At the start of race three, Paul decided to join Peter Graham for the port start and they both crossed the fleet and it was then that Paul noticed Peter was sitting much further forward on the tramps and hiking from in front of the shroud – which made a huge difference in the light winds and flat water. On the last lap, with nothing to loose, Paul went further instead of gybing at the turning mark and had more pressure which allowed him to catch up by the time they both got to the finish – but not enough to prevent Peter winning. The final race was a one lap dash and Peter had seen the wind had shifted and started on the committee boat end. Most of the fleet went left but Paul thought he had spotted a shift to go right – and found himself in a hole trying to get back to the windward mark. Peter Graham was never headed and Peter Duross came through to take second place. With Dylon and son retiring before the last race – it had been a long day. The overall winner in the Weta division was Peter Graham, 2nd place was Geoff Waldon and third Peter DuRoss, Paul White came fourth and Dylon and crew retired early. Both Dylon and Paul could only attend the Saturday’s racing.
Thanks to Peter Duross for promoting the event and the Weta at PBSC.
Paul #325 Sydney
Video of Day 1, Race 1