Catamaran Sailing Report – 4 May 2016

Report on Amakati exploits this past weekend


SAS KZN Grandslam Richards Bay this past 30th April – 2nd May long weekend.

What a brilliant venue! Those of the Amakati who attended really enjoyed an excellent weekend from a social point of view. Zululand Yacht Club, its facilities and people are awesome. The youngsters were sailing their SAS KZN Youth Regional’s, so with their fleets of Optimists and Lasers, with senior fleets of Lasers, Darts, Hobies and then other smaller class numbers, in excess of 50 competitors attended.

The sailing of this event was unfortunately afflicted by bad luck with weather not playing the ball over the entire long weekend.

Saturday had a strong Southerly wind blow in with wet and cold weather and wind speeds between 30 – 40 knots at times. It was decided not to attempt racing as the conditions in the harbour were dangerous, so prudently, the racing was cancelled for the day. This left the competitors to enjoy supporting the club and local restaurants in the area, thankful at not having to face the miserable weather outside.

Sunday morning greeted the competitors with overcast weather with a breezy Northerly blowing in the morning. All the competitors were prompt in getting out and onto the race course, some from as early as 08:00, relishing the breeze with catamaran sailors trapezing. The scheduled start time was 09:00, but unfortunately there were delays. At 10:30 when racing got underway, the breeze unfortunately had all but disappeared, leaving a shifty/ fickle wind of less than 5 knots with drizzle at times. Many of the 50 odd competitors were frustrated by the sailing conditions with many retiring and going back to shore. For the rest of the competitors, they sailed 4 soldiers courses for the day with little or no tactical advantages to be played.

Monday, the weather was sunny, but the wind forecast was not good, with a light North wind of around 5 knots, dying and switching to the South at 12:00 and light. Many competitors decided not to sail and packed up. The start of racing was delayed and again races were of a “soldiers course/parade”,  except for the 3rd race of the day, where for the first time the wind held fairly true and a good tactical race in 5 knots wind was sailed. After this race, with the wind dying, more competitors retired to pack up boats and go home. A further race was sailed before “cut off time” taking the regatta total up to 8 races sailed.

Despite the frustrating sailing conditions, we enjoyed the venue and the camaraderie. Lessons in light wind sailing were also learnt, so we all came away from the event having learnt something.

See results attached.


Forthcoming Events.

Three Ships Masters Event at ISC in 7th & 8th May

Repeating myself from last week, I shall unfortunately not be able to sail this event as it clashes with Stuart Ritchie and Lindi’s wedding at Tala. But, for those not invited to the wedding, go sail this event on your Halcat. This year would have marked my 3rd (or 4th)  year anniversary sailing catamarans/Halcats.

This event is open to 35 years and older participants, based on an age handicap system. This is a fun event where dinghy’s and catamarans are invited to enter. The NOR is out.

RNYC Squadron Series on Sunday 15th May at 11:00

Many of the Dart sailors have been requesting some offshore sailing, so this is an ideal event to sail. Any Halcats in good condition can also sail, but the understanding must be that if your craft gets into difficulties, the Race Committee will rescue sailors as a priority and sailing craft will only be recovered if there is opportunity to do so. Arrangements will be made to escort Catamarans sailing out through the harbour for the days sailing and an escort back in after racing.

So, I hope to see you on the water and around the club for “Serous Catamaran Sailing and Awesome Fun”.

Rob Samways


By Margie