EBYMBC Winter Series Race - 15 June 2019

posted by Geoff Head   [ updated ]

Crew: Geoff, Ken, Lorna, Paul, Robin

Forecast: : Variable 5 knots. Southerly 15 knots developing this morning, and rising to 20 knots about the south coast for a time late this morning and early afternoon. Easing to southerly 10 knots everywhere this evening. Moderate sea in the south for a time late this morning and early afternoon. Cloudy periods, and fair visibility in occasional rain from late morning.

Robin and Lorna joined Geoff on Halo at Chaffers Marina and we cast off from the berth at 1030 hrs. Wind had been steadily increasing since early morning and as we were unsure which genoa to we would be using in the race we motor sailed round to Evans Bay with just the mainsail up. At the clubhouse we signed on for the race and learned that it would be course No. 7 which is: Start - 10 (Falcon Shoal) - 12 (Wards Is.) - Finish, with a 5 min. warning for the start at 1230 hrs.  Paul and Ken joined us and we cast off ready for the start. Positions were allocated as Paul on bow, Robin on mainsheet, Ken on helm, Lorna on keys and trimmer, Geoff on bow and trimming.

The wind had come up to just under 20 kts so we prepared the No. 2 Genoa and the medium Spinnaker. We started with just the mainsail initially and hoisted the Spinnaker for the down wind run to Point Halswell. A great start with only 2 boats ahead of us initially. By the time we reached Pt Halswell a couple of the faster boats had passed us and we then turned south into the head wind tacking towards Falcon Shoal. Had a rather close call with Coriander and Grenadier as we tacked in front of them!

Rounded Falcon Shoals light at 1322 hrs and then headed down wind on a broad reach towards Ward Island neck and neck with our rival Coriander. Doug yelled out at us that we needed to clean out bottom! We rounded mark No. 12 at 1336 hrs with inches to spare cutting in front of Grenadier who was taking a wide turn. On the beam reach back to Evans Bay Grenadier was able to gradually pass us again. We then beat our way into Evans Bay with four tacks before getting to the finish line just 10 seconds ahead of Coriander.  (The finish line was positioned just after Greta Point between the Race Committee Boat Pania on our starboard and the end finishing mark on our port. 

Results for the race (see below) were Halo 5th on handicap and 5th on line. A great race and we didn't even notice the crappy weather. I did get some post-race feedback at the clubhouse that it was looking like Halo was under powered with just the No. 2 Genoa, so we may have done better with a No. 1.  Also we should get our bottom cleaned before the next race.


EBYMBC 2018/19 Season Prize Giving

posted 8 Jun 2019, 23:04 by Geoff Head   [ updated 8 Jun 2019, 23:12 ]

Held at the Evans Bay clubhouse Saturday 11 May 2019 the Centenary Season Prize Giving was a fun night with success for Halo:

* Winner Pet Cup
* Winner Holmes Cup
* 3rd Place Cruising Division Season Championship

Congrats to the crew who have competed on Halo at various times over the season; Peter Gates, Eduardo Villouta, Paul Jennings, Murray Thomas, Ken Glassey, Grant Timlin, Lorna Zach, Tuncer Sakgun, Pien, Julie Brixton. Thanks EBYMBC for a great season's racing!


EBYMBC Pet Cup - 13 April 2019 - Win for Halo!!

posted 14 Apr 2019, 17:02 by Geoff Head   [ updated 15 Apr 2019, 01:31 ]

Crew: Geoff, Eduardo, Ken, Murray, Kaye. 

Forecast: Southerly 25 knots gusting 30 Knots, easing to 20 knots in the afternoon.

Eduardo and Geoff motor-sailed Halo round to Evans Bay with the Mainsail rigged with 1 Reef and tied up at the pole at 1110 hrs. Wind was as predicted, southerly 25 kts with long gusts of 30 kts.  At the clubhouse we received confirmation that the race was on (!) with 5 minute warning at 1250 hrs and the course was to be, "Start Box-Shoal Pile (flags) to Falcon Shoal #10 to Ward Island (island) to Finish. Port roundings". Ken, Murray and Kaye joined us and we cast off at 1236 hrs.

After some deliberation and seeing that there was no sign of the wind decreasing, we decided on the No. 3 Jib and keeping one reef in the Mainsail. Ken was on helm, Eduardo on bow, Geoff and Murray on mainsheet and jibsheet trimming.  There were only five boats in the race. The others presumably dropped out due to the windy conditions.

We had a perfect start. Halo was first over the line at 1255 hrs as we powered up Evans Bay running at over 7 kts in a tail wind with the jib goose-winged on the spinnaker pole. Passed Point Halswell at 1311 hrs and even though we kept a wide berth of Kau Bay our speed dropped to 5 kts. Once we cleared the shadow of Mt Crawford our speed picked up to a healthy 6.5 kts as we headed towards the Rear Lead. We then realised that we should be heading further south towards Falcon Shoal so we tightened up into the wind for a better course although this slowed us down to 4 to 5 kts until we rounded the mark at 1336 hrs.

Then on a broad reach towards Ward Island our speed was up to 6.5 to 7 kts. We noticed that Ursurper who was leading the race, was speeding off to Days Bay. He obviously wasn't aware of the course change! As we rounded Ward Island Geoff kept a close eye on the chart plotter and we were able to cut inside and overtake Grenadier.

On the broad reach back across the harbour the wind had dropped and we were thinking a larger headsail would be nice. No time to change sails though. We were averaging 6.5 kts and saw Grenadier sneak past us again. We rounded Pt Halswell at 1156 hrs and beat out way down Evans Bay into the wind in two tacks averaging 5.5 kts. We crossed the Finish at 1442 hrs with only Grenadier ahead of us on line by two minutes. A great race!

At the clubhouse the race results were announced. Halo had won the Pet Cup on corrected time! And we came third in the overall Season Champs!


EBYMBC Holmes Cup - 30 March 2019 - Win for Halo!

posted 1 Apr 2019, 21:44 by Geoff Head   [ updated 13 Apr 2019, 23:43 ]

Crew: Geoff, Ken, Paul, Emma, Lee

Saturday : Variable 5 knots. Northerly 10 knots developing in the evening. Sea slight. Fine weather.

After running through the safety briefing with new crew member Emma we departed Chaffers at 1024 hrs motor sailing round to Evans Bay with very light breezes fully expecting the race to be cancelled due to lack of wind. After doing a bit of practice raising the sails and tacking we tied up at the Evans Bay wharf at 1123 hrs. Rafted up with Doug Young's Coriander. Paul and Ken joined us and EBYMBC confirmed that the Cruising Division race was definitely on with a course of: Start - #5 Somes Island port rounding - Finish, with 5 minute warning at 1250 hrs.

After rigging the LW Spinnaker we cast off from the wharf at 1217 hrs and with No. 1 LW Genoa and Mainsail hoisted sailed back and forth along the start line. Crew positions: Ken on helm, Paul and Emma on jib-sheets, Geoff on mainsheet and Lee on bow.  The breeze was coming up a bit to around 8 kts from the south and we noticed that the other boats were sailing with just mains ready for a quick hoist of the spinnaker on crossing the start line. We decided to follow suit and dropped the Genoa.  

We crossed the start line at 1256 on a starboard tack as we hoisted the Spinnaker.  Four or five boats were already slightly ahead of us and on the east side of the bay whereas we were on the west side. This proved to be our first lucky break. A big Singapore Airlines Boeing 777 came into land after a couple of minutes creating a massive back flow of air down the middle of the bay  causing some boats flying their kites to stall in the turbulence. We managed to just avoid it.

We continued to sail downwind in a fairly straight line towards Somes Island. Boat speed was about 5 kts as we passed Point Halswell at 1320 hrs then dropped down to 2 kts in the shadow of Mount Crawford and then up to 5 kts again as we crossed the harbour towards Somes. About half way across we heard five loud blasts from the Bluebridge ferry as it appeared to be heading directly for the number of the other boats which were behind us. We watched as some of them had to take evasive action. At the same time the Interislander was passing ahead of us but not close enough to be a worry.

We raised the Genoa and dropped Spinnaker as we turned round the No. 5 Buoy on the south-west of Somes Island at 1348 hrs and beat our way back to Evans Bay. Ken commented that he was impressed that Halo was doing almost the same speed upwind that we had been doing downwind with the kite flying.  Mainly thanks to his great helming skills! We managed to sail all the way to the finish line in only two tacks. The first at Point Jerningham and the second at the southern end of Shelly Bay. Crossed the finish line at 1449 hrs with Usurper, Airlift, Stinger and Liquid Asset beating us over the line.

We dropped off Ken and Paul at Evans Bay before sailing back home tying up at Chaffers at 1533 hrs. Just after packing up the boat Geoff received a text from Ken: HALO HAD WON!! 

Well that's a first for Halo and we all felt justifiably pleased with our achievement.


EBYMBC Centenary Regatta Day 2 - 24 March 2019

posted 25 Mar 2019, 19:49 by Geoff Head   [ updated 26 Mar 2019, 16:05 ]

Crew: Geoff, Bruce, Ken, Seamus

Sunday : Northerly 15 knots, rising to 20 knots in the afternoon, and 25 knots in the evening. Sea becoming rough in the evening. Cloud gradually increasing.

Early start in conditions very different to yesterday so we rigged up the No. 3 Jib in expectation of the northerly already blowing up to 20 kts as we left Chaffers at 0930 hrs. We motored round to the start line at Evans Bay. Race Officer Paul Davies announced on Ch. 62 that the course was to be "Start - Ngauranga Buoy #4 (stbd rounding) - Finish. 5 minute warning at 1000 hrs".  

We were a bit late arriving and so weren't in an ideal position as we crossed the start line with most of the fleet already ahead of us.

Crew positions were Bruce on helm, Seamus on bow, Geoff and Ken on main and jib sheets. We tacked our way up to Balena Bay then across to Point Halswell with a total of 6 tacks until we reached the Ngauranga buoy at 1057 hrs. The northerly was around 18-23 kts and while we sailed comfortably we could probably have got more speed with the larger #2 genoa.

Once we rounded the mark we hoisted the MW spinnaker and had a quick run down to Evans Bay at 6-7 kts but still couldn't catch Temptation even though she wasn't flying her kite. Only hiccup was when we passed the finish line at 1128 hrs we realised that we were on the wrong side of Pania, the committee boat, necessitating a quick drop of the spinnaker and tack back north to come across the finish line a couple of minutes later.

Halo was 6th across the line behind Usurper, Saucy Sausage, Zimmerframe, Impulsive and Temptation and 8th on handicap.

Overall result for the two day regatta was 6th on handicap out of 16 boats. Not too bad!


EBYMBC Centenary Regatta Day 1 - 23 March 2019

posted 24 Mar 2019, 17:02 by Geoff Head   [ updated 25 Mar 2019, 20:07 ]

Crew: Geoff, Peter, Grant, Murray, Ken

Metservice Forecast: Variable 5 knots. Southerly 10 knots developing this afternoon, turning northerly 10 knots this evening, and rising to 15 knots overnight. Sea slight. Fine weather.

We departed Chaffers Marina at 1010 hrs with the No. 1 LT Genoa rigged and motor-sailed round to Evans Bay. Race Officer Paul Davies announced on Ch. 77 that the course was to be "Start - No. 4 Ngauranga Buoy - No. 5 Somes Island Buoy - Finish. Both marks starboard rounding".  

Halo crew positions were Geoff on helm, Ken on bow, Grant and Peter on sheets and Murray on mainsheet.

Being the Centenary Regatta it was pretty crazy at the start with around 100 boats in the bay including 15 Cruising Division boats. We had to be very watchful for the dinghy sailers zooming all around us as well as the keelers edging into position. Wakarere came very close to touching us from behind just before the start (see photos below) but all worked out fine and Halo got off to a good start at 1110 hrs beating into a slight 5-6 kts northerly easterly breeze up towards the top mark in a single tack.  

By the time we reached Ngauranga the wind had almost stopped altogether and we drifted slowly round the mark at 1230 hrs. Ken took the opportunity to jump in the water for a swim and we could hear Paul over on Temptation entertaining himself on ukulele.

We headed across the harbour on a beam reach at about 2 kts but not enough angle to be able to hoist the spinnaker. We slipped past the Somes Island buoy at 1330 hrs ready for the expected downwind run to Evans Bay only to find the wind had now changed to a southerly so we had to beat our way back to the finish tacking our way round the harbour looking for the best wind. Once the got into Evans Bay we were greeted by 10 kts southerly  as we crossed the finish line at 1501 hrs.

Not a bad result for Halo, 5th over the line (Saucy Sausage, Zimmerframe, Airship and Usurper were ahead of us) and 8th on handicap.

After the race we flew the kite sailing back up the bay returning to Chaffers marina at 1545 hrs.


EBYMBC Kelvin Hopkins Memorial Race 9 Mar 2019

posted 10 Mar 2019, 18:02 by Geoff Head   [ updated 12 Mar 2019, 02:55 ]

Crew: Geoff, Eduardo, Murray, Lorna

Marine Forecast: Variable 5 knots. Southerly 15 knots developing late afternoon, gradually rising to 20 knots gusting 30 knots this evening. Sea becoming moderate this evening. Cloudy, with fair visibility in patchy drizzle.

EBYMBC advised by text at 10am that "the Cruising Division race this Saturday will be held in conjunction with RPNYC starting at RPNYC 1315, course to be broadcast on VHF CH62".  
The course was later confirmed as RPNYC  No. 72:  Start, 9p, 4s, 9s, Finish and we would be racing alongside the Port Nic boats.

We cast off from Chaffers Marina at 1240 hrs and rigged up the No. 1 LT Genoa and full Main. Positions were; Murray on helm, Eduardo on bow, Lorna on keys and trimmer, Geoff on mainsheet and trimmer. Wind was almost non-existent southerly during pre-race and we rigged the light Spinnaker ready for a downwind start. However a couple of minutes before the start the wind drifted round to a light 5 kts northerly. 

We started at 1320 hrs slowly with just 4 of the faster Port Nic boats ahead of us and the rest of the boats behind us. 

The breeze slowly increased to 10 kts northerly as we sailed on a beam reach across to Point Jerningham and then close-hauled up to the Ngauranga mark. We reached the mark at 1358 hrs and then for the downwind section we raised the spinnaker and made quite good progress back to Point Jerningham. On rounding the No. 4 we decided not to gybe but to continue fairly close to land straight towards the club house which meant we had to dowse the kite fairly quickly after passing the Finish line at 1437 hrs.  

Total elapsed time 1 hr 17 mins. 4th boat over the line. 



EBYMBC Interclub Race - 2 Mar 2019

posted 3 Mar 2019, 21:04 by Geoff Head   [ updated 12 Mar 2019, 02:56 ]

Crew: Geoff, Graham, Bruce, Paul, Deneen, Jeremy

Marine Forecast: Variable 5 knots. Southerly 15 knots developing this morning easing to 10 knots this evening. Sea slight, Mainly fine.

This combined inter-club race is a staggered harbour pursuit race with boats starting form between 12:00 and 13:45. Halo's start time was set at 12:25.

We set off from Chaffers Marina at 1018 hrs with Geoff, Graham, Bruce and Jeremy and rigged up the No.1 Genoa and Main to sail round to Evans Bay, tying up at the wharf at 1116 hrs. Met up with additional crew Deneen and Paul and obtained course instructions of  "S – 11s – 10p – 5p – F" for the Spinnaker Division boats.

We then cast off and did a few practise tacks around the harbour. The wind was already about 18 knots, a bit stronger that the forecast, but still within the capacity for the No. 1 Genoa. The plan to rig up the Spinnaker was thwarted on the realisation that it hadn't been repacked after the last race. We decided to just run with the No. 1 Genoa poled out 'goose-winged' for the downwind stages. Positions were: Bruce on helm, Graham on mainsheet, Geoff and Paul on trimmers, Deneen on keys and Jeremy on bow.

We started well at 1225 hrs and hoisted the pole and with Genoa in place we made good pace north at 6 to 7 knots to where we calculated the first mark, #11 Korokoro Buoy, would be. We eventually realised that most of the other boats were heading further NE to our estimate but we continued the same course to maximise the angle our poled-out Genoa. 

We rounded the mark at 1310 hrs and started to tack close-hauled south towards the Falcon Shoal Buoy. By this time the southerly had built up to over 20 kts and we were struggling to keep Halo sailing efficiently with the gusts causing us to heel over considerably at times. Our speed was down to about 4 to 6 knots. We considered doing a Genoa change but decided against it, guided somewhat by all the other boats around us all sailing with full mains and genoas plus the difficulty of changing headsail mid-race.  We were still expecting the wind to die down as forecasted. In retrospect this proved to be the wrong decision. We did put in one reef in the main and then a second which helped.

We passed the Falcon Shoal Buoy at 1423 hrs. By this time many of the boats that had started after us had now passed Halo. We enjoyed a nice down-wind run to  the Somes Island Buoy 'goose winged' at 6-7 knots once again passing the mark at 1450 hrs.

We then tacked our way back to Evans Bay passing the finish line at 1548 hrs. The southerly was still strong at around 25 kts gusting over 30 at times. 

After docking Halo back at Chaffers we returned to the Evans Bay clubhouse. It was good to compare notes with the other skippers and hear that others too had suffered with being over-powered for the winds. It was a shame Halo ended up competing in the Spinnaker Division as most of the other EMYMBC boats were in the Non-Spinnaker Division.   

Not a great result for Halo but it was still a wonderful day sailing out on the harbour with a great crew!


TBCC Nelson Regatta 20-22 Jan 2019

posted 22 Jan 2019, 21:17 by Geoff Head   [ updated 12 Mar 2019, 02:57 ]

Crew: Geoff, Tunch, Eduardo, Pien.

"Have you ever done the Nelson Regatta?" Tunch asked me back in 
November last year. No, I hadn't but I'm always up for new challenges for Halo so I looked into it. The Nelson Regatta is an annual event run by the Tasman Bay Cruising Club which includes an overnight anchorage in the Abel Tasman National Park. A number of Wellington boats sail over every year to join in the fun. I decided we should give it a go. 

With Tunch and Peter we crossed the Cook Strait on 12th Jan via Cape Koamuru and cruised at a leisurely pace via French Pass arriving at Nelson Marina on the 15th.

Eduardo and Pien joined us on Saturday 19th. After dinner on the boat that night we all visited the TBCC club house for the social evening. Other Wellington boats there for the regatta included Gucci, Bullistic, 88% Proof etc. Halo was the only boat entered that was flying the EBYMBC burgee and with a handicap of 0.6017 was second to bottom of the TCF list.

DAY 1 - 
Sunday 20 Jan - Tasman Bay Coastal race

Unfortunately we woke to high winds in the Nelson area and at the briefing in the TBCC club house at 9.30 am it was announced that all racing for that day was cancelled. Such a shame after the beautiful weather we had enjoyed in Nelson over the last few days. To cheer up a somewhat despondent Halo crew we spent an enjoyable afternoon walking round the coastline to Tahunanui Beach where we had a lovely swim in the sea.

By the time we got back to the marina the wind had dropped somewhat so we decided to take Halo out for a pre-regatta practise sail. We cast off from the marina at 1640 hrs with the No. 3 Jib and Mainsail rigged. Crew positions were allocated as: Geoff on helm, Tunch on bow, Eduardo on starboard trimmer and keys, and Pien on port trimmer and keys. The mainsheet to be handled by Eduardo or Pien depending on which tack we're on.

Once we sailed out into the inner harbour we found it was colder and windier than expected. Jackets went on as well as one reef in the Mainsail. We headed out through harbour entrance known as The Cut. 
 This was dug out in 1906 when the early settlers wanted to open up the enclosed harbour to shipping. 

Once out of the harbour we found the seas and wind were too rough to be enjoyable so turned back into the inner harbour and sailed northwards in challenging conditions with wind 30 kts gusting to 40 kts. We soon made our way back into the marina arriving at our berth at 1900 hrs. A pretty wild sail but we all agreed that it was good to get out and have a warm-up for the big race tomorrow.


DAY 2 - Monday 21 Jan - Nelson to Torrent Bay race

We woke to a lovely morning in the Nelson Marina and what appeared to be perfect conditions for our big race to Torrent Bay in the Abel Tasman National Park. Sunny with 15 kts southerly breezes. Exciting!

After a hearty breakfast we attended the race briefing. Geoff entered all the course coordinates onto our OpenCPN and we cast off from the marina berth at 0915 hrs with the No. 1 Genoa and Mainsail rigged.

We motor-sailed out to the start line which was 2.5 miles out from the coast. The start time for the 12 boats in the Cruising Division was delayed to 1015 hrs. We had good start with only about 4 boats ahead of us as we sailed close-hauled in the direction of Abel Tasman National Park. We started feeling some good sized gusts coming through but didn't think too much of it initially. Pien was doing a good job on mainsheet to manage them. The wind however kept on increasing up to 25 gusting 30 kts and getting harder to manage. We put a reef in the mainsail and heard the announcement from the RO Paul Davies on Ch. 77 that the race had been cancelled and that all boats must return to their berths at the marina.

We dropped the Genoa and turned back towards Nelson. The wind kept on increasing to 45 kts as we put a second reef in the mainsail to be safe. Even with 2 reefs and no Genoa we were still sailing at up to 8 kts. Exciting stuff.

We eventually arrived back in the berth at 1155 hrs safe and sound.

That night we had a party on Halo with some crew from other boats including David and Wendy from Sirrah and Jim came down too. Geoff got the ukulele out. Fun and singing was enjoyed by all!


DAY 3 - 
Tuesday 22 Jan - Torrent Bay to Tonga Island race, Tonga Island to Nelson race

Unfortunately the high winds continued through the night into the next day and the Race Officer announced that all racing was cancelled and that was the end of the regatta. First time in 10 years that all three days of the regatta have been cancelled.

At least Halo won a Spot Prize the next morning at the 'prize-giving' ceremony!

The next day Tunch and Pien joined Gucci to sail back to Wellington. Geoff stayed on in Nelson another day to do some boat maintenance before flying back to Wellington. Halo remained on the mooring in Nelson pending our return for some cruising in Abel Tasman and back to Wellington.

TBCC Nelson Invitation Race - 18 Jan 2019

posted 18 Jan 2019, 20:26 by Geoff Head   [ updated 2 Feb 2019, 19:26 ]

Crew: Geoff, Tunch, Jim. 

This was a Rum Race warm-up before the start of the Nelson Regatta and as Jim agreed to join us we decided it would be a good experience. We attended the race briefing at 1630 hrs and were given race instructions which to us out-of-towners were a bit confusing. Especially when the coordinates for the Top Mark the Race Officer gave us were totally out. Oh well, we'll just go out and follow everyone else! Start time was set for 1800 hrs.

We rigged up the No. 1 Genoa and Mainsail and cast off from our marina berth at 1710 hrs and motor sailed out through The Cut in light northerly winds to where we assumed the Start Line was. We then realised our mistake. With the help of local knowledge from Jim we eventually worked out that the start was in the inner harbour in front of the Nelson Yacht Club building.  Also, unusually for us, the start would be downwind.

After the usually jostling around during the 5 minute countdown, the race started and we were in the middle of the bunch all converging towards the narrow gap of The Cut. A rather nerve-racking experience as we sailed out with boats just feet away on either side of us. The boats spread out once we got out of the harbour and tacked our way north towards the top mark.

On the way back we hoisted the spinnaker and had a nice run back in light winds to pass the finish mark, which was a transit line from the Cardinal Light outside the harbour, at 1906 hrs.

A lovely evening out on the water and good to have Jim join us. A nice taste (so we thought) for the Regatta on Sunday with the added bonus that Halo came 6th on handicap!


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