Fast and pain free

Andi Robertson on the offshore race at the Bell Lawrie Scottish Series

Friday May 28th 2004, Author: Andi Robertson, Location: United Kingdom
By comparison with previous editions of the Bell Lawrie Scottish Series' opening race, the overnight offshore race from Gourock and Bangor to the Mull of Kintyre fishing village of Tarbert on Loch Fyne which finished yesterday morning was relatively straight forward and had the fleet finished in time for breakfast.

Jonathan Anderson, the only owner to have won the overall trophy three times, started in the best way possible on his First 47.7 Playing FTSE.

Anderson and his crew suffered their own Black Monday crash last year when they trapped a floating line on the third day of racing and then lost a sail and so missed out on both races when they were in the hunt for the overall class win last year. Today they earned an overall margin of four minutes over the 72 mile course which took the offshore fleet down to turn at the notorious DZ mark in under the Heads of Ayr, before a spinnaker run across to Arran, to round a mark near the island shore.

As ever here it was a case of staying away from the Arran shore where the wind was lighter, and there were many who strayed too close and lost valuable time.

With the breeze rising to 21-22knots and the overnight temperatures acceptable even for the west coast of Scotland, a fast reach into Tarbert rewarded the most active crews who were determined to make the best speed. Class 2, with 23 boats entered, looks like the sharpest class. With past Scottish Series winners like John Highcock, Hamish Mackay and Chris Bonar all contained in this fleet competition promises to be tight.

Conditions were ideal for the Mumm 36 of the Port Edgar based Kelly/Bramall/Plummer syndicate, Absolutely 2. Racing upwind to DZ under a blade no 3 and then downwind at full speed under spinnaker the Mumm 36 was nearly half an hour clear on handicap.

2002 winner Hamish Mackay, on the helm overnight on John Corson's Salamander XVIII, steered the new Doug Peterson designed Bavaria Match 38 into third place.

"It was race and a fleet we could easily have done worse in so we have to be happy with a third. We got a bit low of the rhumb line on the beat up to DZ and had to tack up to the mark, and then got a bit close to Arran coming in to Holy Isle, but generally we are happy with a third." Said Mackay.

Three times overall winner Jonathan Anderson and his crew on the Beneteau First 47.7 Playing FTSE made their best possible start to the annual Bell Lawrie Scottish Series regatta which opened with the traditional 80 mile offshore race from Gourock to Tarbert.
With favourable winds throughout the night and express train ride back downwind from the Heads of Ayr, Anderson was four minutes clear on handicap to win IRC Class 1.

The strongest class, with 23 entries and four past Scottish Series Trophy winners racing is Class 2. The downwind speed of the Mumm 36, Absolutely 2, which has past class winner George Purvis as tactician earned the biggest winning margin. With 26 minutes in hand they left the new Bavaria Match 38 of John Corson, Salamander XVIII, which was steered by 2002's Scottish Series champion Hamish Mackay, trailing in their wake.
Salamander XVIII finished third, leaving Mackay to comment: "Third is fine for us at this stage. We did not do that well on the way out of the Clyde, but got better. We're happy."

The six day regatta is the second largest annual event after Cowes Week and this year has drawn an entry of 173 boats in 13 classes.

The Bell Lawrie Scottish Series
Day 1, Offshore Race to Tarbert

From Gourock to Tarbert:

IRC Class 1:
1 Playing FTSE (J Anderson) 11hrs 58 mins 15 secs,
2 Blue Magic (Napier/Hogg) 12:03:009,
3 Seanachaidh (IGraham) 12:10:36,

IRC Class 2:
1 Absolutely 2 (Kelly/Bramall/Plummer) 06:28:26,
2 Sloop John T (I & G Thomson) 12:24:39,
3 Salamander XVIII (J Corson) 12:31:04,

IRC Class 3:
1 Hops (I McLean) 10:59:15,
2 Trente-Cliq (J Connelly) 11:03:27,
3 Miss Tuttles (G Firth) 11:05:43,

IRC Class 4:
1 Gan'Farr (Duthie/Jack) 10:58:21,
2 Farr Out (B Forteith) 11:06:41,
3 Antix (J Allen) 11:15:23

CYCA Class 6:
1 Tangle O' The Isles (J & V Gough) 08:50:41,
2 Guilty (T Douglas Clow) 08:52:55,
3 Swedish Lady ( I Harris) 09:03:41,

CYCA Class 7:
1 Mellow Moment,(A Rodger) 08:51:23,
2 Mosika Alma (M Goodwin) 09:10:11,
3 Hiltgund (J Bourke) 09:10:34,

From Bangor IRC Class 1:
1 Cracklin' Rosie (R Dickson) 11:17:41,
2 White Tiger (T O Sheehy) 11:34:44,
3 Dark Angel (E Coneely) 11:37:53,

IRC Class 2:
1 Antix ( A O'Leary) 11:01:05,
2 Jacana (A.B.& J Douglas) 11:08:54,
3 No Naked Flames (A & N Allen) 11:17:45,

IRC Class 3:
1 Movistar-Bleu (R Killops) 11:10:05,
2 Avocet (J Thompson) 11:21:10,
3 Sacre Bleu (I Wilson) 12:10:01,

IRC Class 4:
1 Sosumi (D Breen) 10:56:57,
2 Bambi (P Doig) 11:01:41,
3 Rapparee (Hyde/Boulter/Woods) 11:06:46

CYCA Class 6:
1 Crown Duel (Hayes/Carson/McCabrey) 08:52:03,
2 Scooby Doo (D Crowe) 09:19:21,

Sigma 33 Class:
1 Fandango (T Fair) 12:22:26,

CYCA Class 8:
1 Lindisfarne II (J Pearson) 03:06:09,
2 Sula (C Davidson) 03:08:27,
3 Blueprint (A Boslem) 03:10:40,

From Inverkip, Friday, CYCA Restricted Sail Class 9:
1 Sea-Quin (M Broadbent) 03:15:27,
2 Zara of Doon (Wilson/Lyall) 03:19:38,
3 Skerryvore II (E Buchanan) 03:19:44,

Sigma 33 Class:
1 Sigmatic (D McLaren) 04:18:24,
2 Carmen (P Scutt) 04:19:43,
3 The White Tub (McLure/Stewart) 04:21:41,

National Sonata Class:
1 High and Dry (M Price) 04:50:11,
2 Pied Piper (A Harper) 04:51:13,
3 Saraband ( M Taylor) 04:51:13

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