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British Cadet Team at the Cadet Worlds in Melbourne - Day 3

by Neil Collingridge 31 Dec 2022 06:40 UTC 26 December 2022 - 2 January 2023

Day 13 of our trip to Oz - unlucky for some - Day 3 of the Worlds and another 3 race day but this time in very much lighter winds from the South. With the waves having subsided we were back on Bravo course but still with difficult chop to contend with.

Race 6 started off a pin end based line. All of the top 3 boats overall found themselves having to bail out and gybe around the back onto port but somehow found a route through to avoid other boats on starboard but all the while Will and Annabel Shepherd were away up the beat and off to a convincing win - clearly revelling in these lighter conditions. The Sturmans' Stolen Pig from Australia somehow managed to retrieve the situation from their calamitous start and take second with Mish and Rhona the other GBR boat in the top 10 in 8th.

Race 7 still light and patchy and with chop. This time it was the turn of GER9992 to score a bullet - in fact Hirthe and Swientek repeated the trick in race 8 as well to score 7,1,1 for the day and move to 3rd overall. They love the lighter winds. Will and Annabel had another counter, a 5th and Toby Bush and Kemmel Thorogood an 8th to keep them ticking along nicely at the top of the leader board. Ed Fletcher and Alex Enkel also had a cracking race with a 4th to start a charge by them up the overall leaderboard. Elsewhere it felt like hard yards - difficult to keep the boats moving or to read where the wind was heading. There were plenty out there having results they were going to want to discard by the end of the event.

Race 8 more of the same really. Will and Annabel grabbed a 6th completing a great day for them which moves them up the leaderboard to 5th overall. Ed and Alex also finished off a great day with a second place behind the Germans. They sailed the downwinds particularly well staying out of trouble and in clear wind to get past the rest of the leading pack. Sarah McEwan and Holly Jones were the other GBR boat in the top 10 finishing with a great 8th after a really good first beat.

So after 8 races, 1 discard is in place. There were quite a number of protests and arbitrations taking place too into the early evening - the GBR team I felt handled themselves admirably through these protests - but its fair to say a lighter day has moved things around considerably in the top 10.. Toby and Kem still lead but with a reduced cushion, the Aussies' Stolen Pig also stay second but now just one point ahead of the third and fourth placed boats. Will and Annabel are up to 5th overall and Mish and Rhona now 7th. Ed and Alex did their overall position no end of good and are now lying just outside a top 10 position.

One day changes a lot so the message is that with 4 races left there's still a huge amount to play for. The forecast for the last two days of the regatta looks encouraging that we will get the full 12 race series completed - I'm sure that's what our excellent PRO will be looking to do. I've got 10-15 knots northeasterly by the middle of the day on Sunday followed by a forecast of 15-20 knots Northerly on the final day but shifting around the compass to the South during the afternoon. No warning signal permitted after 15.30 on January 2nd.

Today is a lay day - a lot of the sailors will feel they need to recharge. Our excellent coach Rhett has pleaded with they to stay out of the sun as its heating up again here on New Years Eve. We've also a spectacular fireworks to look forwards to at the yacht club tonight which will light up the Melbourne skyline - I suspect most of our sailors will be fast asleep by then.

More information on the event website, cadetworlds2022.com.au

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