Race Report 29/04/18

This week end was that of the Laser training weekend and we couldn’t have had better weather, well maybe a bit more breeze on Saturday morning would have been better, but overall it was great.

However I will not start this report with a report about an insular and self-indulgent small group of Laser sailors– rather I note that it was the last official sailing day at Indented Head Yacht Club and the day of the “Mystery Race”

Your Ed has had this race design in the back of his folder for about 3 years and has always been dying to try it out. The “D” race (for a different course) features two large reaches and minimal up wind and downwind sailing. Personally I am a great believer in avoiding upwind and downwind sailing and reckon that the best race ever would have to be a continuous reach (possibly at the now extinct sauna sail) but this was the next best thing.

So the race was a short beat from start to windward, left turn to reach way out, left turn back to start, right turn downwind and then left turn to back through the start and on to windward.

The description may appear simplistic but the forward committee member and rearward committee did have some difficulties through the race with terms like “bear away”, “ease sail”, “point up”, “port” and “starboard” and “left” and “right” so have resolved that next season the rearward committee member should bash a shoulder belonging to the forward committee member and the forward committee member will move in the opposite direction.

If you are really clever you may be able to reconstruct this course and work out that it is – “tack”, “gybe”, “gybe” and “gybe”. Actually both the forward committee member, while on the course, and Graham Bignell commented on this. I’m not sure if they accepted the subtle design plan. Lasers tip on gybes more often. A bit more breeze and we would have creamed them.

For a while it appeared that we had lost the results but I am now able to advise that that which was lost has now been found.

In race one, and you should note that there are no handicaps in a mystery race, save for Graham Bignell who sailed a Van De Stadt 15 which is obviously a Dutch design and therefore rates as the same as a Flying Dutchman, Chris and Mandy Green dominated. Geoff Dixon was next in followed by Terry Johnson and Leon in Impulses. Garry Venn might have been next (writing numbers down on Ozone is difficult) with the Tasar committee next followed by Danny and Kerryn Rayson. (The Committee was lucky as Danny/Kerryn made some unforced errors we were able to take advantage of). Chris K-T had an uncharacteristically bad race but was ahead of John Carabott on his Weeta. (Don’t ever think that sailors are not competitive, John having wallowed with his small sail last week, having not collected the bigger square top sail previously, had the bigger sail here this week). The Van de Stadt was last over the line and on handicap. Nate Beard was the only Div 3 boat.

In the second race your Tasar committee went for a radical port start and nearly made it. Well we would have made it except that Chris and Mandy Green were in the way (they did it again at the right hand turn mark) and we had to duck behind them. As a result everyone caught up and we had to avoid them. It was nearly brilliant. (The forward committee member differs in this opinion).

In Division 3 Nate was first.

Chris and Mandy were first in Div 1 followed by Leon, who had a better race, Geoff who was consistent, Garry, the Weeta of John who liked the stronger wind, Terry, Chris and Danny and Kerryn. The Tasar committee beat Graham Bignell and crew home.

Peter Ellenby and Tim Waller might have had enough Laser training and missed the last session to run our race. Thanks to both. (Actually I suspect that they both wanted to give back to the club having had the training. More power to them).

The Laser training weekend went smoothly.

It began for us at 8.30 am on Saturday when your Ed turned up to open the Club, put up flags, open the rigging area and whatever. John Walter arrived with drinks and assistance before he was off to work. Ned, Finn, Barney and Pearl arrived and launched boats and organized the day. (Your Ed escaped and took his crossword and hat up to the road to welcome people with Barney’s assistance, and send them down to the rigging area to drop off boats where Peter Ellenby told people where to go, you know what I mean).

The sailing started at 11.00 with introduction and went on to 5.00. Ned had arranged for lunch type rolls which were collected by Anne who was doing tower with Alex. Your Ed had a fine day taking the photographer from Bellarine Times out on a RIB and giving the younger sailors the heebie jeebies as we sought a good picture angle. Alex and Barney helped. Barney failed his boat licence as he insisted that flat out was OK in the 5 knot area, and hit the accelerator.

In the afternoon Alex, the Ed and others assisted in clearing an area for a wedding that Bellarine Bayside had booked in (they wanted a clear view of the sea). It would be nice if Bellarine told us what was happening, in the same way that we had told them that the Laser training day was on, and then we could have been pre warned. But we have a licence over the rigging area, and pay a fee, and I reckon that trumps the wedding’s permit. On the other hand it is a very important day and we tried to make it work for the wedding. Actually the wedding people seemed delighted at the spectacle of about 50 Lasers leave shore just before they started the wedding (cameras were out in force).

John Walter went to the Laser dinner at Portarlington Golf Club on the Club’s behalf. He really does give his all.

On Sunday the Ed was again there at 8.30 but was beaten by Ned and John who had done all by the time the Ed arrived.


Your Ed had a lovely time in the morning in the control tower watching boats leave and come back to shore. To be fair I did have one radio call and did make a list of boat numbers as they left and returned.


Lunch was run by Anne and Alex.


The Lasers finished the weekend by running races through the afternoon and then came to shore to be greeted by Ned’s BBQ.


Great thanks to Ned, Finn, Barney and Pearl over the weekend, Anne and Alex in tower and canteen and to Peter Ellenby and Tim Waller who gave up the Sunday afternoon Laser racing to run our race.


Anne said that one elderly couple had come to watch their son. They said that despite living in Geelong for 60 years, they had never been to Indented Head. And the coffee/tea was free.