Buchanan beats rivals to Frostbite crown at Dell Quay

Action from the final day of this year's Frostbite series   Picture by Liz Sagues
Action from the final day of this year's Frostbite series Picture by Liz Sagues

THE FINAL two races of the Dell Quay SC Frostbite series kicked off with the north-easterly wind making it impossible to set a course with a decent beating start.

The alternative of a broad reach posed some interesting tactical problems, particularly in the first race when the leg was against the tide.

The asymmetrics, able to fly their gennakers, got to the front – but Malcolm Buchanan (Solo) was up with them, and after two beats and another off-wind leg, he held third place at the end of the first lap.

Buchanan further improved his position over the next two laps to take first place on handicap, followed by Warwick Hoddy and John Denyer (2000) and Fred Hilgers (Solo) third.

The start of race two again saw the gennaker boats use their extra sail area to good advantage, taking the first four positions round the first mark. The real difficulty in the second race was rounding the final mark, Quay, with both a strong tide and the wind pushing competitors on to the mark.

Peter King, helming the leading 400, rolled the boat violently to avoid hitting the mark, but as a result tumbled into the bottom of the boat, and much manoeuvring was needed before the mark was safely rounded, with considerable time lost in the process.

Hoddy and Denyer had to abort their rounding to avoid a collision with the right-of-way RS 200 of Alex Lee and Phoebe Noble, also losing time as they made a second approach, and even Buchanan misjudged his line to the mark, having to put in an extra tack before he was safely round.

Tactics won the day with those boats choosing to beat via the eastern shore, from Copperas West to Crouchers, gaining the advantage over the faster boats which took the westerly route. The first two places were unchanged from race one, with Lee and Noble taking third.

After racing, club commodore Chris Sprules presented the series prizes to the winners – first place to Buchanan, second place to Hoddy and Denyer and third place to John Purdy.