SunSail Series Final

Posted by on 16 Nov 2016 in Event Reports, News

On the 12th of November EUSC Yachting sent a new team all the way south to Southampton to compete in the SunSail series final which the 2016 BUCS yachting team had won entry for earlier in the year.

After arriving in the land of the ‘down south’ people very early of Saturday morning and had a quick 6 hours sleep they were ready to roll heading down to the boats to get sorted for the days racing. Along with our team of 7 EUSC sailors we were joined by 2 professional sailors to help us learn fast and race well with a new team that had not worked together before. Robbie and Pete were both very useful and taught us lots which helped our boat handling come together very quickly.

We arrived at the race area with a strong 20+ knots of wind blowing from the South East, however even in the time leading up to the 1st race the trend was that the wind was dying very rapidly. In the 1st race the tactician on board may have slightly missread the tide (in one of the most tidal venues in the world) and as a result of this the team crosses the start line about 1 boat length behind the rest of the fleet which immediately put us in a firefighting position looking for quick escapes to tack out and find a clean lane. Following a very shifty beat we managed to gain back several places to 8th. As the race progressed the wind continued to die and by the final beat we had 2 or even 3 people on the leeward rail to try and keep the heal on the boat! Despite the team sailing well we struggled to fight back to a great position due to the dying wind and a lack of boat speed.

Race 2 had a better start and were powering out to the left hand side of the course and most things were looking pretty sweet in a top 5 position then taking the long tack in to the mark we realised we were going really slow compared to other boats which was being made worse by the dying wind and increasing the speed differences between us and other boats. Half way down the 1st run someone chirped up with, I think the water tanks are still full (900kg of water)! So we had to run down and open all of the taps and empty out all of the water.

After the finish of race 2 the wind properly died and racing was abandoned leaving the team feeling a bit disheartened that we had forgotten to check the water tanks.

On the Sunday after a lovely evening in the quaint town of Hamble with everyone in bed nice and early ready for a full day of training on Sunday we headed out with the main focus for the training to be on boat handling. We had a great day in the sun and plenty of breeze working on our crew work and manoeuvres.

Overall we had a great weekend unfortunately not getting the result we came for due to a rookie error and some non-obliging wind but still learned lots and had plenty of fun ready for out next challenge.

We would also like to give a special thanks to Suzy’s mum for providing massive quantities of amazing food for us to enjoy over the weekend.

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Scottish Student Sailing League #1

Posted by on 15 Nov 2016 in Event Reports, News

On the weekend if the 12th/13th November, EUSC hosted the first Scottish Student Sailing League weekend at Lochore Meadows.

21 university sailing teams from across Scotland arrived on Saturday morning to battle it out and, in spite of some (many) minor wheel malfunctions, the boats were on the water and ready to race by 10am!

Changeable winds made for tricky sailing, with both the teams and the race committee having to constantly adjust to the flakey conditions. However, the race committee persevered and managed to get through 80 races before the wind finally gave up on us. After a hard day’s sailing, we all scuttled home to get ready for the team debrief.

At the end of the first day Edinburgh Blue were celebrating 6 wins with only one loss to the sneaky Strathclyde A, Edinburgh Green and White managed to average above a 50% win rate, and Edinburgh Puce pulled off a dazzling comeback in the afternoon after a slow start.

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Before we knew it, day two was upon us and the teams were back at Lochore bright and early and ready to race. Unfortunately, the wind had other ideas and the teams got their first glimpse of what a lazy Sunday might be like (ignoring the fact that they’d been up at 6am to get to the club) while they waited for it to arrive.

Once the wind decided to sheepishly make an appearance, we launched straight back into racing and managed to complete the remaining 69 races of the round robin before it snuck back off.

With the racing complete, it was the moment we had all been waiting for; the results! Edinburgh Blue came 2nd in their pool and won a place in the prestigious Platinum league, Edinburgh Green and White secured their places in Gold, and Edinburgh Puce sailed well but were unfortunately capped at Silver due to pesky rules about team changes.

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All in all, the teams raced well and made the best of changeable and tricky conditions. Thanks must be given to the Race Committee, umpires and all of the helpers, who made the event possible, and to Leanne Fischler for the photos!

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Glasgow Grouse

Posted by on 2 Nov 2016 in Event Reports

The first sailing competition of this years calendar, The Glasgow Grouse took place last weekend which saw 4 Edinburgh teams and an Edinburgh Alumni team compete against their Scottish rivals. Everyone woke up early Saturday morning to make our way to Bardowie loch to register and rig the boats keen for an exciting day of sailing.

Unfortunately, a heavy mist was sitting on the lake preventing any wind and the forecast was not showing much promise, the morning consisted of lots of sailors cramming into the club to stay out of the cold air, we even had some brave people attempt wakeboarding in the freezing water.

Finally at 2 pm the race committee decided to cancel all races for the day as it was looking like we weren’t going to get any wind leading to everyone rushing to pack up the boats and head home for the afternoon.

In the evening all got ready putting on our fancy clothing including some questionable kilts and headed out for the Ceilidh held at the Glasgow University Union where everyone had a great time even if you were left spinning in circles trying to figure out what to do next.

Sunday saw everyone ready for a full day of sailing but as we arrived we were met with a glassy loch. Eventually, a breeze came over and despite many worries it stuck allowing everyone to quickly grab their boats and sail out to start racing. What followed was an intense day of sailing that thanks to a great race committee allowed us to get in a full 60 races, a quarter finals, semi-finals and final race.

RNCYC ended up winning the Grouse against Strathclyde Blue and an Edinburgh University Alumni team, Edinburgh Import beating Edinburgh A in a highly contested playoff to take 3rd place, leaving Edinburgh A in 4th. It was a great first event for all teams, giving some great experience and lots to learn from ready for the first SSS league event next weekend.

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Ceilidh Cup

Posted by on 13 Oct 2016 in Event Reports

The Ceilidh Cup is an annual Keelboat Match Racing event hosted by the Royal Northern and Clyde Yacht Club in Rhu, Helensburgh. It also incorporates the Scottish Student Sailing Match Racing Championships, and therefore sees a large number of Universities competing alongside non student teams. The very first British student sailing event of the year, it was over subscribed as teams were eager to put their new teams to the test.

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The weekend saw light wind on both days, making for tense racing. Edinburgh started the round-robin with an unfortunate loss against reigning champions RNCYC due to an equipment failure. Made only more determined by this we then went on to win against Strathclyde Blue, forcing them to take a penalty just before the finish line allowing us to sail past. Further, a convincing win against Strathclyde Red set us up well going into the fourth race and we led St Andrews round the course until the last leg, where they managed to ride a gust down the course and pip us to the line. Downhearted by this, our spirits were low as the wind dropped off and racing was cancelled for the day.14646558_1248578178506966_1594834946_o

Sunday saw us focused as we took three straight wins against Aberdeen, Glasgow and St Mary’s Loch Sailing Club (a mixed team, including past and present Edinburgh students). This left us having won six out of eight races and a 75% win rate in our round-robin, but several teams were still to race each other so we were unsure of our position overall. As soon as we had finished our races the wind again died and the fleet was left drifting. We sat and watched as the sailors taking part in SSS Fleet Racing kept sailing in a small patch of wind near them.

After an hour of waiting, the race committee attempted to try and complete the round-robin, but again the wind didn’t play ball. More waiting ensued but we were told we could now head in, as now only a few university teams were staying out to attempt to race each other, in order to ensure the SSS prize could be awarded. Tensions were again high as we waited to hear if any team would match our results.

The prize giving started and with it came surprise as we found there was a three way tie for 1st place between Edinburgh, Strathclyde Blue and St Andrews. Due to the lack of a final series because of the wind and the method by which the SSS title is awarded, it happened that all three teams ended up with five wins in the six student-student races. This was rather unexpected but nonetheless we were delighted to take the title of SSS Match Racing Champions for Edinburgh University. We also left the event in second place over all with six wins in eight races, two wins behind RNCYC and one point ahead of Strathclyde Blue, which is always satisfying. Our thanks go out to the RNCYC and the race management who ran a great event!

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