The Royal Ocean Racing Club’s annual Vice Admiral’s Cup Regatta was sailed on the Solent. The fleet was treated to a wide variety of weather conditions—cloudy to sunny, light to breezy, shifty to streaky, and, of course, current.
Day One: The opening day served up light airs, with big shifts and wind reversals that challenged competitors and race officials alike. A quiet morning quickly gave way to an afternoon that started with fast-paced action on both course areas. The first start was for the J/111s in a very shifty southwesterly of 10-12 knots that created plenty of tactical challenges in a tight race with a short 0.8 mile windward leg. The fleet strongly favored the committee boat end of the line, and the first start was abandoned with 40 seconds to go. In the restart, the fleet was more spaced out, with Cornel Riklin's J/111 JITTERBUG closest to the pin end of the line. Both Simon Bamford's KESTREL and Joerg Sigg's LALLEKONIG appeared well placed mid-line, but the former was OCS. It was an intense race for the J/111s, with two laps completed in only 35 minutes, and the first five boats finishing just 69 seconds apart. Joerg Sigg's Swiss LALLEKONIG took victory, 20 seconds ahead of Tony Mack's McFLY, with Cornel Riklin's JITTERBUG third.
Day Two: The second day of racing delivered short, sharp races that tested sailors over a wide range of conditions. It was a day of intensely close racing in a very shifty north-northwesterly breeze of mostly 10-15 knots, but with a number of lighter spells and a brief squall that saw gusts above 20 knots. Tony Mack’s McFLY asserted near dominance in the J/111 fleet, taking two decisive wins and two second places. The winner of Friday’s race, Joerg Sigg’s LALLEKONIG, took a 30 percent points penalty for an infringement in race 3, and lying one point behind McFLY in the overall standings. Competition further down the fleet was equally strong, with Chris Jones’ JOURNEYMAKER II on 14 points, and both Jan Van Berne’s RED HERRING and Cornel Riklin’s JITTERBUG on 15 points going into the final day.
Day 3: Summer sun returned for Sunday’s racing, with bright sun and rising temperatures, but initially without any wind. The committee boats left the dock when the beginnings of a southerly of 2-3 knots sprang up in the central Solent at 1030 hrs. Half an hour later, it had swung into the southeast and increased to 8 knots, and the AP flags signaling the postponement came down at 1100. At the start of the day, five boats were still in contention for a podium place in the J/111 fleet. A win in both of Sunday's races sealed Tony Mack's class victory on McFLY, 6.5 points ahead of Sigg's LALLEKONIG. The three-way fight for third was resolved in favor of Chris Jones' JOURNEYMAKER II, thanks to his two second places.
For more RORC Vice Admiral’s Cup information, visit http://www.rorc.org/racing/racing-portal.