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SSANZ Lewmar Triple Series

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Here is how Island Time's day went.


We left Gulf Harbour about 7:30am - a bit later than expected, not ideal. it was gusting over 40 at Tiri, so went out with deep reefed main and a working jib sized bit of head-sail unrolled. We expected to be hard on the wind to Auckland, but as it turned out we were able to lay our course with cracked sheets. 

Actual breeze on the water was mostly mid to high 20's at this point, with frequent squalls up to a little under 40 Knots. We had the right sail combination for us in this, with boat speeds around 8-9 knots. Visibility was pretty variable - from good and clear to very limited in the squalls.

As it turned out, we arrived at the start line at the right time, only a minute or two before the start. However, we were now in one of the lulls, and still had our deep reef in, so we were a bit under powered. We had discussed shaking out a reef, but decided (unwisely as it turned out) to leave it in and wait for the next squall to see what happened. Many of the other boats had only one reef in, some had two. We thought it might be interesting to see what happened in a 40 knot squall.

So, we got a reasonable start, but it soon became apparent that we were too slow with this rig. The course was pretty much dead downwind, so firstly we elected to pole out the head-sail, and unrolled it. That was better, and at least the other boats got no further away! We should have shaken out that other reef by now, but we didn't.

Wind speeds down the south side of Rangitoto and Motutapu  were mostly low 20's gusts to mid/high 20s. As we came through Rakino Channel, gust strength increased again, seeing over 30 a few times ( enough to convince us to leave the reef in and see if we got 40's on the outside, but we didn't). Had a good view of (I think) the lead Piedy coming down under Kite - great sailing by them! 

Once around Rakino and headed for Gannet rock we finally shook out that reef that we should have done ages before.

We had a good ride down to gannet rock, with frequent bursts of boat-speed over 11 odd knots, but mostly around 9. It was pretty pleasant when the sun was out! Boats on different courses all over the place, and some good views of them in various stages of control.

Around Gannet rock and to Shearer rock (off Tiri), and now with the right sail up, we made better time, but the course was a bit tighter to weather than I'd expected. Conditions again gusting to mid 30's over the deck on occasion, and the odd sea breaking a bit. We'd had a bit of water over the deck during the day and it makes you appreciate the canvas work and clears keeping us out of the wind and water, so we were dry and warm all day. I would have laughed at that when I was 20, but now I'm happy to sacrifice the speed penalty for the comfort! Same with the wind gen. Despite using all the instruments and AP, we weren't really draining the batteries.

Anyway, once around Shearers Rock we had a reach over to the haystack,which was good,  then (less good) hard on the wind to the finish, with high 20's and low 30's over the deck. As I'm sure that many of you will appreciate, going to weather with 30ish knots on the nose is a bit lively. Also, with a partially rolled headsail, pointing is rubbish, with us at about 38-42 deg apparent. Not ideal. We were about the same boatspeed as a Y88 to windward, but he was way higher, climbing out above us.

Anyway, we did a long board out towards long bay, and the wind was slowly dropping to about 20 knots true. We tacked back towards north head, and unrolled the remaining headsail, which was a bit more than we needed, with 26-27 apparent, but it allowed better pointing.

About 5 minutes after that, and about an hour and a bit from the finish, there was a decent bang, shook the boat - what the ^&&^ was that? The genoa halyard had broken. Now, on most systems, we could have simply changed to a spare halyard. However, Island Time has an Alaldo furler, which has no top swivel and the halyard goes through a block on the top of the foil and returns to the drum. If we used a spare, (conventional halyard) it means no working furler. So it's either drop the sail, go up the rig and reve a new halyard, use a storm jib (does not use the furler), or be stuck with a full size genoa. We could see another squall coming down on us, and a full genoa was not that appealing if it turned out to be another 40 knotter, plus the storm jib was way too small for the lulls. As we were about 1/2 way between Auckland and Gulf Harbour at that point, I decided to retire and head home.

Apart from the halyard breakage, we had a good days sailing. :-) Fortunately it was not anywhere as bad as the forecast!

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145 entries for the Lewmar 50 in just over two weeks! If you have not entered a 2 handed race before this is a great opportunity to join in on the fun and give it a go! The Baltic course is just 27nm, and with all divisions finishing at Islington Bay the post race after party is definitely one not to be missed!


Can we get to 150 or more on the start line for the last of the @lewmartripleseries races?

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We might actually make the start line on time for the 50. We spent a few hours sorting through all the old sails that came with the new boat last night...hoping for a bit less breeze for the 50 miler as the oldest main that we used to sail some of the 100 course went into the skip afterwards....


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SOS After Match Mothership Needed


Its the Piedy's turn to dial up the Triple Series Coastguard Fundraiser and aftermatch.


We have run out of options via 88 and PP contacts so putting out an SOS for a mothership to put the sounds and BBQ undercover in case of a tropical shower or two.  This event raised just over $500 for CG and was a real blast last year and promises to be bigger and better this year.




If you can help then please send a message to the Piedy's via their FB page or FB messenger @PiedyAssocNZ message here or email youngeightyeight@gmail.com and we'll put you intouch.



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We have so sausages for the bbq for you.

Someone will bring them over once the raftup starts or can we give them to you Friday evening?

I’ll be doing the start as usual but am double booked for the evening

“Smooth Operator” Steve Ashely’s launch will be on station for the finish

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162 entries now

They close in 24hrs

172 was our biggest fleet ever, let’s see if we can match that.


If you have always thought one day you’d like to try this, then next Saturday would be a great intro.

Weather is looking moderate and it’s the shortest coarse

Finishes in Islington Bay for a quite raftup

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Must wear glasses when typing in future, usually just rely on predictive to correct my mistakes


But take it however you like

I have seen it turn into quite a rolf up

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What a cool, and somewhat diverse fleet.

Think for the moment the SSANZ folk can lay claim to having the biggest keeler/multi event in the country, though I'm sure the CC people plan on relieving them of that burden.

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I looked up last years coastal and saw 144 entries.


And 117 finishers for 2018 Coastal.


So we have 172 entries now for Saturday, wohoo! We'll be live streaming the start again (and maybe some finishes too if people are interested) and if you'd like photos/video of your boat make sure you sail past the committee boat or the RIBs out on the water.


Don't forget to update your crew changes on the SSANZ website if you've had someone bail on you, or you've bumped them for a "rockstar". 


See you all on the startline!! 

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We struggled to hold our mast head kite all the way from Browns to Rocky Bay buoy. But we held on with a few round ups.

When we turned around and went upwind, we were surprised to see almost all the Piedies and Young 88s with no kites up!

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