The vagary of this year's spring weather made it a challenging event, however the stalwarts of the group were up for the challenge and arrived at a chilly Takamatua recreation ground on Saturday to rig up. The overnight rain had departed by morning but a strong Sou’Westerly brought white caps to the harbour and this held for most of the day precluding any organised sailing.
An early briefing was held and the general consensus was to wait until late Sunday morning to attempt to sail around the foreshore course. The “Show and Tell” walk was held and everyone had a chance to talk about their boat – there is always something new to be gained from this exercise and it is always remarkable how walk-up visitors join in and have something to contribute. Some are from other countries and often conversations start with “We've got something like that back home...” The most admired craft and eventual overall winner of the day was Oyster – a New Haven Sharpie built to exacting standards by Neil Watkinson. The detailing and standard of workmanship has to be seen to be believed.
Our evening barbecue at Camp Taylor, Takamatua, was well attended, thanks to cook Warren Stephens and New World St Martins! When all was cleared away we had a comprehensive and interesting talk from Pat and Paul Pritchett on exploits with their boat George Emile on the French canals.
Sunday was a much better prospect for sailing – blue skies and a dying SW wind. It was cold and the larger trailer boats had quite a wait to launch as the tide trickled in. The five dinghies were able to launch earlier off the beach and enjoyed a Parade/Race around the moored boats. The only trouble was each skipper had his own version of where to sail.
Two Shellback dinghies, and International 14 and a Pelham dinghy, made up this fleet. We were escorted by Warwick Stephens in the 2.4m Wairoa, powered by its minute outboard! We were joined by the larger boats when the tide allowed them to launch.
Over all – a very enjoyable event, weather is no obstacle; good organisation (thank you Peter Braithwaite), the common interest and great venue always make it a success. Next year, hopefully, we will try and hold this event in mid-November and hope for warmer weather!
- A rare classic in original condition, Secret Weapon , a Tempo yacht Craig Keenan.
- Original classic over 40 years, Finito, an International 14 Craig Howie.
- a likely story, Wearoa, dinghy, Warwick Stephens.
- Longest distance travelled, Trondra, Ian and Alison Milne. (Dunedin)
- Best overall The Whalers Trophy & Peoples Choice, Oyster, Neville Watkinson.
Our thanks to:
Akaroa A Class Sailing (Ray Shoebridge) for gift voucher awarded to best overall boat
Akaroa Promotions (Hollie Hollander)
C.C.C. Events team and local Akaroa staff - for their support and encouragement