Sir Ronald Edwards BBQ

A glance at the race results page on the Club web site will reveal that there were strange goings on. It was eventful from the very outset. Some boats, unusually, misidentified the windward laid mark on the first beat. Having got a taste, or rather a faceful, of Weymouth Bay’s most refreshing waters some decided early that discretion was the better part of valour and called it a day. Vernon Taylor in Hussy, was heard shouting something about “Got to go in and light the BBQ” to She, who was wisely hiding under the cuddy. Those more lacking in imagination pressed on. All of the many bits of unexplained string that so characterise a Squib were suddenly put to use to de-power the rig. And so it was, with masts bent like bananas, and pushing aside mental images of the day’s earlier mast breakages at Cowes, the survivors blattered into the Bay.

The Sir Ronald Edwards Trophy race, cheeringly, has Ringstead as a key mark. The west wind made the prospect of a beat from ‘R’ to ‘C’ particularly unappealing, so the fleet took a collective decision to shorten the course by a mile or so and round ‘B’ instead. Unfortunately, neither the Race Committee nor Quantum got the memo and Quantum was left to plough a lonely, righteous, furrow and the finishing hooter was mostly given the afternoon off.

There was some particularly good sport at the front of the recreational fleet and the three boats brave enough to attempt to fly spinnakers – Longshot, Inky Finger and Inquisition - managed to give the insides of their boats a good cleansing sluice out in the broaches. Suffice to say, their crews returned to shore rather wild-eyed and emotional, babbling something about Radox baths.

The BBQ, expertly and brilliantly organised by Vernon and She, was a well-attended, sun-kissed, social triumph. The self-help BBQ was an excellent reminder that democracy is the worst possible form of government. There was much unseemly jostling over the sausages and order was only restored to the mob by Vernon with the offer of inducements in the form of ice-cream and dessert.

In short, a very fine time was had by all, both on and off the water. Special thanks are due to Mark Lee and the Race Committee and to Vernon and She Taylor for making this year’s Sir Ronald Edwards such an exhilarating and memorable occasion.

‘Squibbler’

Submitted on Monday, 7th August