18 - 20 July 2012

J Class Solent Regatta

Velsheda and Rainbow at the Solent Regatta 2012 © unknown

J Class Solent Regatta – Race 3 Report

20 July 2012: After a delayed start the fleet got away cleanly with Velsheda first at the port end and Ranger last off at the starboard end.

At the first leeward mark, Solent Bank, Velsheda had a commanding lead followed by Rainbow, Lionheart and Ranger.

At the second leeward mark Velsheda was still leading but Lionheart, still behind Rainbow called for an overlap and forced Rainbow to give her inside rounding, so Lionheart came through to 2nd.

The finish, was off Egypt Point, Cowes giving another spectacular finish, as was enjoyed yesterday by the crowds who got there in time.

J Class Solent Regatta – Race 2 Report

19 July 2012: After a delayed start in the vicinity of Gurnard, Race 2 got underway towards Lymington a in a stiff 15 knot breeze.

With the remains of the flood tide. Ranger and Velsheda approached the leeward end, but just too early. Ranger found herself trapped and had to shoot between the inner distance mark and committee boat. Velsheda crossed 2 seconds early and had to complete a fast bear away jibe to restart. Meanwhile Lionheart and Rainbow made clean starts but Lionheart was fouled by Ranger, who was clearing the line on Port. Lionheart bore away under Ranger’s stern and shortly after flew a Protest flag.

After a long beat into the last of the flood tide to Solent bank, the rounding order at the top mark was Lionheart followed closely by Rainbow, then some distance behind Velsheda and Ranger. Places were unchanged after the leeward gate.

With strengthening winds the yachts headed West again, into what was now an ebb tide, to Lymington Bank mark. Lionheart consolidated their lead and put a covering tack on Rainbow. Velsheda and Ranger closed some distance, benefitting from a full spring edd tide.

Lionheart rounded first and elected for a spinnaker jib set, to sail towards the North shore and out of the strong tide. Rainbow and Velsheda followed the same course. Ranger still some distance behind elected for a bear away set, to sail the Island shore – the shortest distance to the finish off Cowes. Whilst Lionheart, Rainbow and Velsheda sailed against less tide they would still need to cross over to the Island shore for the finish so Ranger’s choice of sailing the island shore was a major tactical risk.

At the finish line Lionheart crossed first, followed by Velsheda, and Rainbow. However, with a small handicap advantage, Velsheda won on corrected time by just 5 seconds. Ranger was not able to benefit from the decision to sail on the Island shore.
A very large fleet of spectators was assembled to watch this race and almost all respected the requirement for sea room for the yachts to tack and gybe, but a few larger powerboats did get in the way of the race yachts and put the race in jeopardy.

1st : Velsheda
2nd : Lionheart
3rd : Rainbow
4th : Ranger

Note: CHANNEL 06 will be used for information and safety on Friday and Saturday


J Class Solent Regatta – Race 1 Report

18 July 2012: A difficult first day with strong winds and a fierce outgoing tide faced the four yachts at the start of the J Class Solent regatta.

A great line up at the gun with Ranger and Velsheda just ahead of Lionheart and Rainbow. Both Lionheart and Rainbow crossed onto the North shore for the long beat into a strong 20 knot SW wind and building sea.

Ranger and Velsheda elected to work the Island shore, where the outgoing tide was expected to be stronger in their favour.

At the weather mark, now crowded with spectator boats from all around the Solent, Ranger rounded first, with Lionheart close behind, followed by Rainbow and Velsheda, who had slipped back. Ranger gybe set onto a symmetrical kite whilst Lionheart split from her with a bearaway set onto an assymetric kite. Ranger now drew ahead sailing best angles into the foul tide with the symmetrical.

The gap between the yachts never really opened up significantly and all boats crossed the line within 137 seconds. Finishing positions across the line were unaltered by the very small handicaps that apply to each individual yacht, to account for small performance differences.

1st Ranger
2nd Lionheart
3rd Rainbow
4th Velsheda

3 J's © Nigel Pert