Yesterday (Sunday 22nd January) was the 2nd Kilindini Cup & very strong & gusty winds were the order of the day. It’s not often we get Force 6 in Mombasa, but when you see the whitecaps being knocked off the top of the waves by the wind & the water has a glassy sheen about it, then you know the race is going to be all about good boat handling to stay upright. Deadly Dave (who won the 1st Kilindini Cup) had his stag night the day before & arrived looking very hung over, so the Commodore set the most complicated course of the season to see if we could give others a chance to win by making him sail the wrong course……!!. Four Lasers (2 with the bigger standard sails & 2 with the smaller radials), plus 2 x 420’s entered what was going to be a very challenging afternoon’s racing.
The Laser’s were neck & neck to Likoni & then Dave (standard sail) led the way as we zig-zagged down thro 8 ships at Mtongwe closely followed by Teddy (radial sail), while Chris (radial) & Evans (standard) were close behind. Then Chris & Evans made a big mistake that was to cost them the race by taking the direct route to Flora Beacon to the leeward side of a tanker at the M buoys which unexpectedly created a wind swirl & had them on a screeching reach one minute, then beating & then going in circles with no wind…..disaster !!. Dave & Teddy wisely took the windward side & reached the Flora Beacon well before them. From that point only Teddy had any chance beating Dave as we beat back to the K buoys & had a broad reach back to the ships at Mtongwe. Isn’t it strange how we can’t resist taking a shortcut & making the same mistakes year after year – something to do with our competitive natures I’m sure…!!. The tide was ebbing fast as we zig-zagged back up thro the ships to Likoni, & for the first time for a long time the wind was so strong that ships were being held at right angles to the strong ebbing tide. Trying to save precious seconds by going too close to the leeward side of a ship would result in a loss of wind & being sucked under the side of the ship by the ebbing tide – ”panic time” – which Chris narrowly escaped, while Idi & James had a good laugh watching from the rescue boat….!!.
The 420’s with Jo & Dion in one boat & Jochen & Christine in another did very well to stay upright throughout the race, but being relative newcomers to racing in Mombasa they struggled with the complicated course. However, they both thoroughly enjoyed the challenge & it is great to see that we now have some sailors who appreciate what a fine racing boat the 420 is. Once we get them back up to racing standard they should be able to give the Lasers a run for their money (being the same A handicap of 1078). On that note a big thank you to Dion (a new members from S. Africa), who repaired the mast support strut on the 420 which broke last week in the Mombasa Cup when a shackle pin failed. Dion also repaired Martins boat Tern & for the first time for years she returned home dry inside. Thanks again Dion.
The final result for yesterday’s race was 1st Teddy Ndaro, 2nd Dave Mackay, 3rd Chris Soper, while Evans & the two 420’s retired. As the Kilindini Cup comprises two races & in the first race 2 weeks ago Dave came 1st, Chris came 2nd & Teddy didn’t sail.
Therefore the overall result for the Kilindi Cup is 1st Dave Mackay, 2nd Chris Soper & 3rd Teddy Ndaro. Well done Dave, let’s see if you can keep winning after you are married…….??!!.