Malcolm sails to handicap victory

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WITH a cool light breeze from the east throwing few sporadic gusts across Forfar Loch, seven boats lined up for last Tuesday’s June handicap race - five Lasers and two Toppers.

Craig Knox (Laser) got off to a decent start but found himself forced to contra-tack into the fleet within a couple of minutes, and lost all his advantage.

Gybing at the second mark, he suffered an injury severe enough to unsettle him significantly and he chose to retire at the end of the first lap.

Meanwhile, Malcolm Heron in his Laser placed himself firmly at the front and proved unassailable throughout the four laps to notch up another first.

Peter Tait and Alan Cairns in their Lasers enjoyed a close race of their own behind Malcolm, Peter eventually outsailing Alan to take second place with Alan third.

Graeme Knox, wishing that the wind would strengthen, had an unusual off-night in his Laser as the wind did quite the opposite after the first lap and he had to settle for fourth place ahead of the two Toppers helmed by David Smith, fifth, and Jordan Sutherland, sixth.

Commodore Jim Green congratulated Jordan upon completing his first full race sailing solo, and thanked David Sturrock for providing safety boat cover.

With a stiff easterly breeze throwing hard gusts across Forfar Loch, and many light weather sailors missing, only four boats lined up for the pursuit race on Thursday.

Jim Green got off to a good start, but his first gybe was in a gust and ended in disaster, so by the time he righted his boat from the resulting, horrible, downwind capsize the 2.5 minute Solo advantage had gone and three pursuing Lasers were past.

Undeterred, he carried on as there was a good chance he could regain a place from someone else doing the same thing.

Everyone had to be extremely cautious as the gusts were instant and variable, particularly when running and the Laser dagger boards unusually remained almost fully down to prevent violent rolling.

This time Graeme Knox preferred the conditions and was at the front, although every time he thought he could relax, Alan Cairns reminded him he is also quick in stronger winds and closed the gap.

Craig Knox broke off his fight early to investigate a possible ongoing break-in to the clubhouse.

This proved to be a false alarm but his race was ended.

There was no racing on Sunday. However, a traditional Scottish BBQ was had and even the light wind sailors preferred burgers to what would otherwise have been a drift over a glassy surfaced loch under grey, threatening clouds.