Hampton Regatta 2006 -
sent a strong contingent to the 'Handicap' class at Hampton Regatta on
24 and 25 June. Lasers now sail in the Handicap fleet.
As usual, we received a warm welcome and great hospitality from the hosts. Teas, lunches etc. were delicious and lots of fun.
Sadly, though, most of us thought that the lack of wind
was not quite as much fun! Many of Aquarius's sailors, and especially
Richard, are stars in light wind - and Richard achieved a 4th in the
second race. But this regatta was often 'no wind' rather than 'light'
and in those conditions, the locals proved hard to beat.
My satisfaction at a 4th in the first race and 3rd in the
second race was somewhat tempered by a complaint about means of
propulsion. Unjustifiable in my view (but then, I would say that,
wouldn't I?) Anyone less than around 12 stone needs to keep their
weight well forward when sailing a Laser. And oldies sometimes find
that sitting in a Laser can be very hard on the knees.
Hampton Regatta results for AQSC entries
The easy solution in
winds light enough not to need hiking out is to stand up well forward.
Unfortunately, this leaves the bit of the boat left in the water shaped
like a canoe - i.e. very unstable (as everyone who's been amused by my
capsizes in Force 0 will have noticed!). The result is that the boat
can appear to rock, even though the motion is not applied by muscle
power. Deliberate rocking is illegal if it propels the boat, so after
the complaint I dutifully sat down.
Appearing to support the complaint, my results
weren't as good in the next two races on Sunday - although I put that
down to the effects of sailing whilst in pain! If you have a video
camera, please video me if you see the 'rocking' as I'd like to assess
the evidence. Does anyone know where I can get sailing kneepads?
Despite the problems, the Aquarius contingent kept
going steadily, maintaining consistent results with Brian and Rodger
both gaining 6th places out of a field of over a dozen. Relief came in
the last race with more wind, which Richard won! In the end, I was
pleased to be second Laser overall, although there was no prize for
that, I'm afraid. Actually, I just missed the prizes with a 4th
overall, immediately followed by Richard at 5th.
In summary, Hampton Regatta was a lot of fun despite
the difficult conditions. Luckily, we managed to show strength at the