Queenscliff to Geelong 2013
The 2013 Queenscliff to Geelong was scheduled for the 4th of July but due to a less than promising weather forcast the Geelong Trailable Yacht Club took the tough decision to postpone the race until the 17th of November.
The change of date was handy for the crew of Pipalini who were unable to attend on the 4th but were able to make it on the 17th. They may not have been the only ones in this situation as the numbers were good in both divisions with 10 in division 3 (faster) and 8 in division 2 (slightly less fast).
The wind forcast was a raffle with anything from 5-20kts, but generally predicted to be from somwhere in the south making for a fast race. In any case the weather was magnificent with blue skies and mid 20's temperature. The start saw a few boats over early due to the flood tide, one of which being Castle "Dream On". The first leg from the start to the West Channel Pile was a loose beat to start with as boat tried to get into the deeper channel for extra current assist, but as the leg proceeded it was a shy reach under kite by the end. Kites remained up for the next few legs starting with a VMG run downwind and finishing on a very shy and very fast reach until getting to the port Richards channel, and try as we might the kites couldn't be held, so down with the kites and up with the headsails.
The next 15-18 miles saw nothing but two sail reaching with no tacks or gybes to be done! As the wind picked up it was turning into Noelex weather and the leaders started to edge away into the distance. Once reaching geelong it was a quick gybe and kites up again for the last 1.3 miles into the finish line near St Helens.
At the end of the day it was a Noelex fest with them taking out the full podium, a Norwalk Island Sharpie snuck in for a 4th place having enjoyed the reaching conditions, and Pipalini was the best placed Castle at 5th. "Dream On" finished a credible 7th with only two on board.
All in all it was a day of Champagne sailing under blue skys and in flat water. An event that was well worth doing.