Enterprise 2023 Scottish Nationals at St Mary’s Loch SC
10 visitors joined 5 local boats for the Scottish Nationals held at SMLSC, including 2 “oldies” of the Ent fleet- Euan Dunn & Neil Piper making a welcome return after at least 15 years away, both sailing with their daughters.
The first race started in perfect 10-15 mph and 3 boats of the fleet were too eager, being over with 10 seconds to go and having to return. Euan & Morven Dunn showed their long absence hadn’t affected them and lead at the first mark, never to be threatened. The racing behind was competitive, with places being gained and lost every beat. At the finish, Neil & Emma Piper were second and Paul Young & Emma Coleman coming third. Unluckiest team were Robin & Olivia Wilkins who, whilst in 3rd place, fell foul of the dreaded St Mary’s wind shift, which backed their jib and capsized them too windward.
The second race started in similar conditions and all were clean away, with a gaggle of boats arriving at the windward mark. The run became very tactical with Euan protecting his wind and luffing Ges Brown and Julie Moore, allowing Jon Woodward, sailing with Dan Swaffield through to the lead, which they held to the finish. The wind was still tricky, with places won and lost on the next 2 laps (shout out to Ges & Julie- who managed to lose 6 places on the 2nd lap, going from 3rd to 9th)- at the finish Euan & Morven were second and Neil & Olivia third.
The final race of the day started in lighter winds and again after a clean start it was Ges n Julie leading at the windward mark, followed by locals- Charles & Alision Morrish, Euan & Morven and Jon & Dan. Euan showed his light air speed by passing Charles and catching Ges, who held on for the win, Euan second and Charles third. The fleet returned after great days racing to the club house for food, a few beers, dancing and the legendary bacon butties after the festivities (big thank you to chef Charles Morrish).
Day two started with lighter winds and an abandoned start, after the wind shifted 90o with one minute to go, the Race Officer moved the race area further up the Loch.
Race 4 started with the usual suspects converging at the windward mark, with the addition of Keith Milroy & Caroline Gold, who were making a bid for glory, the run became tactical (with a bit of shouting) and 6 boats rounded the leeward mark in quick succession. As the leaders tacked off in the hunt for clean air- Ges & Julie found more pressure on the right and were leading at the windward mark, with Euan & Mervan second. The third beat saw a change in the lead as Euan stayed right, Ges up the middle and so Euan & Mervan went on to win, clinching the event with 1 race to go. Jon & Dan found some speed on the run to claim third.
Race 5- With Euan already wrapping the event up, the battle continued for 2nd & 3rd overall, with Jon & Ges leading the chasing pack, after the first beat. The next lap saw a change in leader as Ges n Julie managed to squeeze round the windward mark just in front of Jon & Dan. The run became even more tactical as 5 boats converged at the leeward mark together, it helped that Julie asked for water on Jon (and as they are married)- Jon obliged and Ges & Julie took the win, with Euan & Morven getting second and Jon & Dan third.
At the prizegiving Euan thanked all the St Mary’s Loch team for putting on an excellent event (as it always is).