Racing Rules of Sailing

As we sit down for a cup of tea between races every Sunday, one of the hot topics is almost always the rules, so if you ever need to resolve a dispute, just head over to the comprehensive Racing Rules of Sailing website where all will be explained.

I’m sure we’ll still end up with as many interpretations as there are members present, but at least it’ll be based on fact, rather than what someone told you at the pub 😉

 

Useful downloads (including Basic Race Rules)

Whether you’re new to sailing or have years of dinghy experience, we all have questions about what things are called or what the rules are in particular circumstances.

Thankfully, the nice people at InstructorToolkit.co.uk have put together a selection of free PDFs that may well have the answers. While most are geared towards instructors, there’s plenty of information for anyone interested in sailing and I’d urge any members that come down for Sunday racing to read the Basic Racing Rules! 😉

The rest of the PDFs can be found here.

Charity Pursuit 2018 – Race report

This year’s Charity Pursuit, in aid of King’s Health Partnership, saw a great turn out and winds of 10mph gusting nearer to 20, so was definitely going to keep members on their toes!

The fleet was made up of around a dozen dinghies, including Comets, a Byte CII (starting a little over 5 minutes later) and a Laser (around 3 minutes after that).

First out of the blocks, the Comets made a strong start, completing a full lap before the Tony’s CII even had a look in and coming up on their second by the time the horn blew for Neil in his Laser. As the race went on, the Comets began to spread out and as Robert took a commanding lead at the head of the pack, the Byte and Laser closed in at the back, and shortly after half time Neil was rapidly eating into his 8 minute deficit, having passed the rest of the fleet once, but with less than 45 minutes to go, could he do it again?

With a little less than 30 minutes to go, Neil managed to make his was up to 4th place, the Comets looked to have a tight grip at the front and Robert showed no sign of slowing down as he extended his lead over the others. But as the clock wound down, so did their lead, as one by one Neil managed to reel them in and with less than 10 minutes to go, took first place and didn’t look back.

So congratulations to Neil, this year’s winner of the CSC Charity Pursuit!

A big thanks to DO Kathy and ADO Will for a great race, and to everyone who’s given £5 to a great cause (even if they didn’t enter the race).

Charity Pursuit this Sunday, 17 June 2018

It’s that time of year again when we ask members to put there hand in their pocket and pull out a fiver to enter our annual Charity Pursuit cup race, with all proceeds from this year’s race will go to the King’s Health Partners, in honour of former member John Moxom, who sadly passed away earlier this year.

There’s no excuses now that five pound notes are waterproof, so why not put one in your buoyancy aid pocket today so you don’t forget?

See you on Sunday!

Blue-Green Algae guidance

Some of you may have spotted the recent appearance of small clumps of blue-green algae on the lake which the Environment Agency has advised us has the potential to cause harm over the coming weeks, but the lake is still open and sailing will continue.

The RYA has issued guidance, which we recommend all participants should read. A few important points are:

  • Duty officers (DOs and ADOs) should assess lake conditions before commencing any sailing activity and warn participants of worst affected areas, setting a course that avoids these areas if appropriate
  • Participants should be made aware of the facts on blue-green algae; the council sometimes posts notices around the boat park to facilitate this
  • Capsized participants should not remain unduly long in the water and should (as always) avoid ingesting lake water
  • Participants should wash hands thoroughly before eating and remove scum or algae from clothes and equipment before storing it or entering the changing room
  • Non-participants should not be allowed to walk or play at the water’s edge

We will of course post updates here, and via our Facebook and Twitter pages, if circumstances change.

Push The Boat Out success!

Last Sunday, 13 May 2018, saw another fantastic Push The Boat Out open day at Croydon Sailing Club, with dozens of members of the public joining us to experience dinghy sailing for the first time.

The day was a great success, so thank you to all those members who gave up their time and ensure everything ran so smoothly, including those that turned up early to help set-up, our 9 helms carrying out familiarisation and letting beginners try the controls, the meet and greet team and those who stayed late to help pack up the site.

Photos by Arthur (using Janice’s camera).

Commodore’s Cup 2018 – Race Report

The Commodore’s Cup is our annual cup race in which the Commodore (or most senior committee member taking part) gets a 60 second head start over the rest of the fleet, who try to catch the Commodore and deprive them of their namesake prize.

This year, Janice (Club Secretary) gallantly stood in as honorary commodore, giving her a 1 minute head start in each of the two (roughly) 35min cup races.

Taking maximum advantage of her head start, Janice appeared to have an unassailable lead as the race reached the half way mark, but with the wind dropping, Steve stormed through in his Byte CII to win the first race comfortably from Ray, who lead home the fleet of Comets, despite going the wrong way, hitting Tim and capsizing. Tim was third, John fourth, Neil fifth in the Laser, losing out on handicap, Janice sixth and Richard seventh, with Jackie (Pico) and Dennis (Heron) bringing up the rear.

The second race, which took place in increasingly blustery conditions, saw Richard pull away from the pack to obliterate Janice’s lead within just a few short laps, taking the win from Steve, Ray, Neil and Tim. As the race came to a close, however, Janice’s biggest opponent turned out not to be the rest of the fleet, as she was finally defeated by an enormous gust, meaning she had to climb out of the lake having found it impossible to return to the jetty upright. It was a baptism of fire for new member Will who launched his new comet in fluky winds with all points of sail available on each beat.

When the overall points were totalled, Richard finished third (7th and 1st), Ray second (2nd and 3rd), and the Commodore’s Cup 2018 was won by Steve (1st and 2nd).

Big thanks to Rob for DO’ing and Phil and Arthur for assisting. Better luck to the Commodore next year.

Pico Match Racing 2018: The Results

Six competitors took part in today’s Pico Match Racing on a three mark race, using improvised buoys on the unfrozen part of the lake and with each sailor had 3 qualifying races, before progressing (or not) to the final two races to determine the top 4.

During the amazing final, Tony rested the lead from Rob to win by just 2 seconds. Denis and Steve took 3rd and 4th place respectively, with Arthur in 5th and Richard in 6th.

Race win times for the individual heats ranged from 3m 54s to a little over 9m, reflecting the even-more-than-usual changeability of the winds at South Norwood Lake.

 

Icicle Trophy Race 2018: The Results

With strong, bitterly cold winds gusting across the lake today, the Icicle Trophy pursuit race certainly lived up to its name.

Right from the start, this was clearly going to be a close 2 horse race, with Steve (Byte CII) taking an early lead and Neil (Laser) making clear inroads into Steve’s advantage with every lap that passed.

As the race entered the second half, Neil finally moved into first place as they rounded Hermit mark, maintaining his lead until, with Steve snapping at his heals, Neil succumbed to the pressure, misjudging a gust and giving Steve the opportunity he needed to retake the lead and take the win.

Congratulations Steve, you’re Icicle Trophy champion for 2018!

Pond Pounders Pot 2018: The Results

With strong winds, 40mph gusts and near freezing temperatures, the Pond Pounders Pot took on an extra “P” this year to become the Pond Pounders Pot in Picos, with 4 brave members taking on mother nature to battle it out in the opening race of 2018.

Having had a great start, Ray looked to have taken an early lead, only to misread the course and briefly head off in the wrong direction, leaving Richard to take first place, closely followed by Neil and Janice.

Over the next few laps, Richard’s decision to reef his sail appeared to have paid off, giving him greater control as the powerful gusts swept the lake, but as the race entered the final quarter, the extra power of Neil’s unreefed sail proved decisive, as he overtook Richard on the way to Jetty and never looked back.

So, congratulations to Neil, winner of Pond Pounders Pot 2018!

Results

# Name
1 Neil
2 Richard
3 Ray
4 Janice

Racing cancelled on Sunday 10 December

While our members have braved any number of extreme weather conditions, even broken through ice on a frozen lake to ensure that racing goes ahead, with weather forecasts consistently showing near 50mph gusts, rain, sleet and snow during our regular race times on Sunday 10 December, we have taken the rare decision to cancel the session.

Predictions for Sunday, 17th December are a rather more sedate 5mph gusting to 10, so see you then!

CSC Volunteer Awarded by HRH The Princess Royal

A Croydon sailor was among dedicated volunteers from across the UK who had their endeavours recognised by Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal at the annual RYA Awards on 24 November.

The RYA Awards are presented to outstanding individuals or groups nominated by their sailing clubs or associations and selected by the RYA Awards Panel.

Before the awards presentation, RYA CEO Sarah Treseder presented Her Royal Highness with pair of marine binoculars on behalf of the RYA’s Members to mark her 30 years as President of the RYA.

Janice Beaumont of Croydon Sailing Club (CSC) received an RYA Outstanding Contribution Award for her commitment to boating.

Janice has been a member of CSC for 14 years and was elected Secretary in 2010. Since she took office membership has doubled, as has the club’s annual programme of activities and the development plan has been 90% accomplished.

CSC has held some of the most successful RYA Push the Boat Out Days in the country, thanks to her efforts.

Janice organised the creation of CSC’s RYA Training Centre, and holds the twin posts of Secretary and Training Centre Principal. She has applied for grants to fund instructor training, boats and equipment and created and delivered all the training programmes.

Janice has worked tirelessly to open up the club and sailing to families and non-sailors and she thinks constantly about how the club can further improve.

Janice said of receiving her award: “Stepping onto the stage to shake hands with the Princess at the awards ceremony was a memorable experience for me as I was there to represent the tremendous growth in sailing activity at Croydon Sailing Club. It is a privilege to be part of the development of an active sailing program for youth, adults and families in Croydon, which would not have been possible without the support of the RYA and grant funding. It was inspirational to meet the other award winners and RYA board members in celebrating the many achievements of dedicated club volunteers from across UK”.

RYA Director of Sport Development, Alistair Dickson concluded: “Volunteers are the lifeblood of our sport. Today has been an excellent opportunity to celebrate the fantastic work our volunteers do to support boating activity in all forms throughout the UK.

“All of the stories behind these special people have been truly inspiring to hear and it’s really an honour to be able to say thank you and celebrate their amazing achievements.”

Do you know a volunteer who always goes the extra mile? Nominations for the 2018 RYA Volunteer Awards are now invited. For more information and to make a nomination visit www.rya.org.uk/go/ryavolunteerawards

– News Release courtesy of RYA, 30 November 2017

Comet Cup 2017 Race Report

We’ve just received the race report from Richard, DO for our inaugural Comet Cup race:

Nine racers joined us for today’s hotly contested Comet Cup in cold, sunny and blustery conditions.

After three hard fought laps, Ray won the first heat, with Rob overtaking Tony at the last possible moment to beat him by a nose and secure the second slot in the final.

In the second heat, John managed to go from first to last and then back to first, with Janice pipping Luke to second after a nip and tuck battle to secure her place in the final.

Five racers who hadn’t finished in the first two in either heat then raced again over two laps, with the top two making the final. This time Luke won, with a fast finishing Geoff beating Tony, Tim and Neil to the line.

With the northerly wind dropping, but still remaining blustery, the course was changed and lengthened. After a very congested start Ray and Rob got away to what looked like an insurmountable lead, ahead by the length of a mark after the first lap. Unfortunately they both went round Island the wrong way. By the time they had corrected their mistake the fleet had caught up and five boats in a line arrived at Island, Hermit and shortly afterwards at Bog all together. Eventually, Rob managed to pull away to win from Luke, John and Geoff with Janice beating Ray on the line.

So congratulations to Rob: Croydon Sailing Club’s for winner of the Comet Cup!

Thank you to everyone for arriving promptly and helping out especially Peter and Phil.

Why the 5m (fishing) rule is so important

With South Norwood Lake attracting fishermen from across Europe, it has become increasingly common in recent weeks to see lines cast out across the lake by fisherman that are apparently unaware of the so-called “5 metre rule” that ensures all fishing lines are submerged under the water within 5m / 15ft of the side of the lake, weighted wherever possible, and in return that we do not sail closer than 5m / 15ft from the edge.

This rule works well at least 90% of the time, but today we had a great example of the damage that can be caused by fisherman ignoring the rules, with a fisherman casting his line from a fishing platform close to the club house across the lake to a point close to centre, resulting in around 30m / 100ft of fishing line becoming wrapped around various parts of at least 3 dinghies, complete with hooks and, not for the first time, cutting two 5cm slots all the way through one of our member’s solid fibre glass dagger boards in the process (see above): imagine if this had been an arm or leg!

So, if you’re DO and you see any fishing lines projecting out into the lake, please do everything you can to explain the rules and protect the fleet from rogue lines; we appreciate that there’s often a language barrier, so will be preparing a multilingual, illustrated sheet you can show fisherman in the future.

 

REMINDER: Golden Shackle Cup Race 1st and 15th October 2017

With the AGM moving to 19 November, this year’s Golden Shackle will now consist of 4 races on the 2 Sundays either side of our RYA Level 2 course: 1st & 15th October 2017.

The winner will be decided using the best 3 of 4 results, using our usual Cup Race scoring system (0, 3, 5.7, 8, etc), with the additional race result used as a tie breaker, if needed.

As always, the winner will take home the much coveted Golden Shackle trophy and mug!

 

Don’t forget your wet (or dry) suit from 12 November 2017

To give you plenty of time to prepare, just a quick reminder that all on-water participants at CSC will require a wet or dry suit from 12 November 2017 until 25 February 2018.

If you’re looking to buy a new wet or dry suit for the Winter, there are lots of bargains to be had online right now at sites like Amazon and Wetsuit Outlet, but it’s important to make sure you get one that’s suitable for the conditions.

For a wetsuit, that means a 5mm or thicker full length suit, which includes suits labelled “3/5mm”, “4/5mm” or similar, meaning they have slightly thinner arms to help you to move more freely.

You may also want to consider buying a rash vest to go underneath, which not only prevent your wetsuit rubbing and chafing, but also help keep you just a little bit warmer.

Cold feet?

We often have lots of members complaining about getting cold feet around this time of year, so if you’re suffering from chilly toes, we highly recommend getting yourself some neoprene wetsuit socks like these.