Posted on the 12th October at 12:00 a.m.
A tough weekend of yacht racing, with varied weather, down in the Solent. Bring on next year! Check out our racing pages to get involved.
Big congratulations are in order to the CUYC yacht racing team who, at the beginning of the long vacation, fought hard in a series of races to retain the Varsity Cup. Unfortunately, Oxford narrowly beat us but there were some useful learning experiences gained and we are all the more determined to win the cup back next year!
The first day saw three races in light airs with the team finishing in 4th overall for the day. Special mention must go to Niels (‘the beast’), Sarah and Laurence who together managed the spinnaker excellently, giving the team some dynamic down-wind racing. Christina also did a superb job at managing a large boat on a crowded start line, and helming the boat with great precision on the upwind legs of the race. The whole team had me working hard down in the Pitt! After a leisurely sail down the Solent in tandem with the Oxford boat, we (miraculously) got a berth in Cowes and enjoyed a delicious curry with our Oxford counterparts.
It was in the second day when the team really came into their own. The wind speed had increased considerably and over the course of the three races we saw our position in the fleet improve, culminating in victory over Oxford in the final race. The atmosphere on the boat was tense as we surged toward the finish line with Oxford a mere 10 boat lengths behind. As we crossed the line off Ryde Sands there was a real sense of achievement for the whole team. Lily, our skipper and tactician, pulled off some superb starts on this day in addition to making some impressive decisions in relation to the tidal streams to give us a real edge over the fleet on the upwind leg of the race. It was also on this day when our two sail trimmers Freddie and Bella really excelled, proving the value of the ‘grindset’!
A huge thanks to all involved, it has been a tough year to organise any racing and the whole team really pulled together to put in a strong performance. Well done to all.
There is, however, the uninished business of losing the cup. Check out our racing pages to have a look at our exciting calendar of racing training and trips this academic year. Do get involved!