Ladies take to helms for Whitby race

Whitby Yacht Club' ladies race presentation on Saturday. Winner Val Uppington (right) is presented with the salver by Commodore Julia Drake (left).
Whitby Yacht Club' ladies race presentation on Saturday. Winner Val Uppington (right) is presented with the salver by Commodore Julia Drake (left).

Saturday saw a change in roles for the crews of the Whitby Yacht Club boats that came out to race on Saturday.

The ladies took the helms of eight boats competing for the Val Uppington Lady Helm’s Salver.

Most of the helm persons are usually men, with the occasional lady, but for this race, it was mandatory that a lady would take the helm throughout.

In order that the ladies did not have to participate in the cut and thrust of a combined start where close quarters situations are quite frequent, the race was of the Pursuit format where theoretically slower boats set off first and the faster ones set off later.

Mind the Gap got proceedings started shortly followed by BOB. Then Masquerade lead the main pack away, followed by Samaki, Cold Steel, Icon, Qantro, and Monsoon.

BOB was rapidly cutting down Mind the Gap’s lead, but the first casualty was Samaki as Cold Steel stormed past.

As often happens, the tide offshore at Sandsend caused a rapid change in positions as the boats that had judged it correctly easily slid round the buoy, while those who had been optimistic struggled to beat against the tide.

BOB struggled slightly, but not as much as Mind the Gap, and took the lead she would retain for the rest of the race.

Cold Steel and Icon took on their perpetual dual and Samaki overtook the struggling crowd at the Sandsend buoy. Icon gained ground on Cold Steel as her helms lady was reluctant to fly her spinnaker, but BOB’s lead did not appear to diminish at all.

The fleet completed the first lap and headed off back to Sandsend.

BOB was the only boat to have to fight her way round the Sandsend buoy as time ran out and Icon managed to just take second place demoting Cold Steel to third.

Result: 1 BOB, Val Uppington, 2 Icon, Shani Kitchen, 3 Cold Steel, Ann Readman.