The Medway Regatta 2021 was held over the end of May bank holiday weekend. This much-loved annual event is a firm favourite for local Dragon sailors and once again resulted in exciting, close racing.
What a great weekend we have just had. The wind was a constant 10-14kts from the NE, a bit chilly in the mornings, but as the weekend went on the sun came out making it near on perfect sailing conditions. Seven boats entered, six from the Medway and one travelling Dragon from Burnham, Andy Moss’ Hands Off (RCYC).
The format was for eight windward/leeward races over the weekend with one long race on the bank holiday Monday.
Absolute Diamond was the committee boat with Richard Stone the race officer, who decided to drop anchor near MYC4 and opting for course one with the windward mark and spreader. After the cruisers set off the Dragons were left to it as the Sonatas had opted to enter class two races, Happy Days!
Onto the Saturday racing where Gandalf was the early leader winning the first race with only two persons on board. The second and third races were won by OCD and Taniwha winning the forth. End results on day one; OCD took the honours, Gandalf 2nd and Suti 3rd with only two points between them.
On Sunday they set up station in pretty much the same place as Saturday but what a difference in our fortunes. The early leaders faded with the 4th and 5th placed boats finding there form. Race 5 was won by Taniwha with the remaining races won by Hands Off. At the end of Sunday the results were; 1st Taniwha, 2nd on equal points Suti, 3rd one point behind were Hands Off and 4th Gandalf on equal points. So this meant there was only one point between four boats with only the one remaining long race on Monday
Before that though, the British Dragon Association had kindly donated some bottles of bubbly which was organized by Bruce Boyd. Edwin and I decided to use some of this for some drinks on the pontoon in which the Dragon fleet attended along with the committee boat and race team. This was a great end to the day, many thanks to Bruce and the BDA.
On Monday the long race took us from Gillingham Reach out to Zulu 2 near Stangate Creek on a beat with a run back to the club line all via various red and green cans. Suti had a great start but struggled on boat speed and the other contenders soon caught up. Hands Off seemed to get away with Taniwha in close pursuit, Gandalf kept in the mix with OCD going around Zulu 2 in 4th.
On the run back home we were all starting to converge with Hands Off being chased down by Taniwha going into Heart Brake Reach. OCD had passed Gandalf just after Mears meaning it was really a two horse race although OCD were giving the front two boats cause for concern.
But Hands Off got their Hands ON the trophy by holding off Taniwha. After a very long race, the first three Dragons were overlapping and the fleet all finished within one minute.
One word will sum up the results ‘ countback `
The Medway Dragon Trophy overall winner was won by Hands Off with Taniwha on equal points
Third place was Gandalf with Suti on equal points
The Kittiwake trophy for the weekends results was won by Taniwha with Suti on equal points
If you want close racing you need to buy a Dragon!
Thank you to all the competitors who took part including Heiko with Miss Molly who used his new boat for the first time and to Neave with Fresia who took part in their first race with a Dragon. A big thank you to Image: Richard Janulewicz of Sharkbait for the excellent shots of our racing.
A final thank you to the Medway Yacht Club for organizing the event and to Toby who represented the Dragon Fleet on the regatta committee
- Trevor and Edwin