Dear avid catamaran sailors (and those who only can dream about sailing fast boats),
Report back on Midmar 9 Hour (Saturday 18th February 2017)
As mentioned in my previous report, herewith my newsletter submission on the HMYC 9 Hour Race:
Many RNYC members representing RNYC entered sailing various craft, from fast (Darts), to semi fast (Halcats), to slow (keelboats and other similar old tech boats), attended this year’s Midmar 9 hour. The weather totally failed to behave as forecast and rather gave us a good blow from the race start (09:30) until 16:30, when we then got a light wind drifter to cut off at 17:30. If you were sailing a Dart or a Hobie 16, this was perfect weather. If you were sailing anything else, including hi-tech NACRA 20 Carbon Catamaran or Hobie Tigers, you got hammered, with many retiring with all sorts of damage or strain to either their craft or themselves.
A total of 45 boats entered with, in my estimation, only around 22 boats really staying actively in the race. The rest either gave up or had long breaks between laps to rest or fix boats.
From the outset, the Hobie 16 of Peter Hall/Justin Butler and crew, the Darts with team Rob Samways and Graham Weyer sailing single handed, the double handed Dart team Wadsworth of Gavin, Geertje and Neil and Linda, all sailed into the lead from the beginning and never capsized or broke anything during the event. Boats that had spinnakers never hoisted them until almost the end of the day, as the wind was just too hectic. Even the hi tech catamarans surprisingly (for me) could not handle the wind, so the Hobie 16s that stayed upright and the Darts romped away! There were more off the wind legs in length than upwind legs, so the Hobie 16s which really motor on a reach, followed by 2up Darts with jibs, then the Dart single handed under Mainsail only fared well. The top 3 finishers lapped many of the boats, if not more than a couple of times over the course of the day.
The final handicap podium finishers were:
1st: Hobie 16 with Peter Hall and Justin Butler with their crews.
2nd: Dart 2 up with Wadsworth family Gavin with Geetje and Neil with Linda.
3rd: Dart single handed with Rob Samways and Graham Weyer.
Other Hobie 16s followed the above.
The Wadsworth family also won the highest placed family team trophy and RNYC came second as the club with most boats entered.
It was an enjoyable event. If you did not attend, you missed a great day of sailing!
Dart KZN Rep.