Summer 7 and prize-giving

The Aberdeen Boat Club’s Summer Series this year attracted 27 entries and, although not seen as one of the club’s most competitive events, it is, nevertheless, taken seriously by all those who cross the start line. On Sunday, the 27th of August, 18 boats showed up off Middle Island for Race 7, the final in the series.

Not a lot of wind was forecast but, being the decider in the series, crews were ready to do battle and finish it off with a lively prize-giving at the club’s Middle Island facility. The format has proven itself over the years and is now a fixture on the local sailing calendar.

The committee boat, Shun Fung, dropped anchor off Middle Island in 12 metres of water and, after some discussion with his assistant, Jennifer Li, race officer Alex Johnston decided on the shortened version of Course 41 for everyone, with a provision to shorten course at Castle Rock if necessary. Club support staff, Sai Fuk, in his P4 sampan, set off to lay the outer distance mark and the Tai Tam mark off Beaufort Island.

Johnston welcomed all boats at 1110, announced the courses and, as always, warned everyone to stay out of the East Lamma Channel’s Traffic Separation Scheme. He also pointed out that the Chesterman Gate could be dropped on the way home and all crews would be welcome at the day and series prize-giving at Middle Island.

At 1119, the AP flag was lowered and the countdown for the IRC divisions began at 1120.
Getting a good start was Eddy Lee’s Next, a Neo Roma 430, with Sunny Leung’s Manbude and Stefan Fillip’s Neo One in hot pursuit. The two IRC 2 Division boats – Zesst and 2 Easy (formerly Arcturus) brought up the rear.

At 1130, HKPN A and B, eased across the line although, in the light airs some of the slower boats took a while. But, a report from Tai Tam with a wind reading of 7 knots from 70 degrees came as encouraging news for the race management team. The RO pointed out that a small typhoon in the area was causing the easterly winds.

Next was first to pass the Tai Tam mark and round Beaufort Island. Thanks to an incoming tide, the IRC boats had little difficulty transiting the channel between Beaufort and Po Toi and, at 1300, Next was rounding Castle Rock and heading for home. The RO decided the committee boat, Shun Fung, should make haste and get into position near Round Island to finish the leaders. In the distance, off Bluff Head, the HKPN fleets were making steady progress in 5-6 knots of breeze.

Line and handicap honours for IRC 1 went to Next, with Manbude 2nd on handicap and Neo One 3rd. Zesst took 1st in IRC 2 with 2 Easy in 2nd.

In the HKPN A division, Sea Eagle crossed the finish at 14:28:15 and scored a deserved 1st on handicap. Helped by the tide, in 2nd came JeNa PaBe with Crystal in 3rd. HKPN B was won by Boss while The Farr Side placed 2nd and Water Rabbit 3rd.

At 1600, the prize-giving began at Middle Island with series awards going to Next (IRC 1) and Zesst (IRC 2) , and Sea Eagle (HKPN A) and Boss (HKPN B) bringing to a close another successful Summer Series hosted by the Aberdeen Boat Club.

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