Spring Excuse Report 2015


35 members arrived at the Jolly Sailor in Bursledon for an informal pub supper in preparation for the start of the annual “Spring Excuse” the following day.

The CSO set a start line at the mouth of Southampton water for a leisurely midday start.  With an East going tide and a South Westerly wind of 14 – 17 knots the course to the Beaulieu river for the dinner at Gins Farm was always going to be a testing one. 
The faster yachts managed a clean rounding of the  first turning mark – Prince Consort off Cowes – and there was a fine tussle between John Westlake’s Polar Bear III and the Captain of Cruising, Nick Atkinson’s, First 47.7  Firefly and, close behind, Peter Bainbridge’s newly purchased Rustler 33 Whisper.  Some of the slower yachts had a more demanding time rounding the first mark… some even took several attempts to get round.
As a result some members completed the course which finished off the Beaulieu river mouth  in just over 2 hours and others took 4 hours, but all completed the event partly in glorious sunshine and sometimes unexpectedly variable breeze.  The two leading yachts finished two and half minutes apart after  two and half hours of racing.