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Day 2 Nationals update

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GJW Direct Firefly Nationals at Royal Torbay Yacht Club – Day 2



After a frustrating Saturday wind spotting on the shore, the 44 strong fleet for the 2013 Firefly Nationals were greeted by a glorious force 4-5 and despite the imminent threat of rain the sailors were keen to get out on the water and start racing. Two races were scheduled on an Olympic course and fittingly the class Chairman Caroline Edwards had the honour of being the first sailor in action sitting along side Steve Greaves in Cumulus as the pathfinder boat. Fast out of the blocks were Jamie and Jo McEwen sailing Skirmish who started early and played the shifts well up the first beat to lead around the first windward mark- with 15-18 knots of wind against tide there were some good waves to be found downwind and the front of the fleet all rounded very close to each other.  Jamie and Jo held their lead for much of the race but were eventually overhauled by reigning and multiple firefly National Champion Stuart Hudson sailing with Jo Findlay in Fursty Ferret, with firefly stalwart Jono Pank finishing third, Andy Cornah and Kate Fairclough in Desperado just pipping Ben and Jenny Vines for fourth.

After a short rest for some much needed recovery, it was time to get hiking again. For the second race the path finder was John Greenland and Ruth Guy, again the big contenders went out early to middle splitting right and left on the first beat and again it was very close rounding the top mark with Jono and Sarah Pank just squeezing round in front in Pogie.  They would prove untouchable from this point on stretching away to a big lead to comfortably to win the much coveted Silver Firefly Trophy. A really close race developed behind with lots of positions changing as the firefly’s battled through the waves upwind and surfed back down them. Ben and Jenny Vines clinched 2nd place with the McEwen’s rounding off an excellent first day adding a third place finish to their earlier second. Reigning champ Stuart Hudson found himself on the back foot in this race but managed to pull through to finish 4th with Andy and Kate in 5th,

Two more races are scheduled for Monday with the wind still forecast to be strong. In the meantime the sailors are set to strip the willow as the get stuck into a BBQ and some Scottish dancing at the Yacht Club.