The second one day Dart 15 Winter Series event took place at Beaver S.C. on Saturday 7th December, and was attended by a record entry of 24 boats, including 14 visitors, with four coming from the Isle of Wight!
The weather was overcast, but generally remained dry for the whole day with an ideal North-Easterly breeze of between 12-18 knots, and the first race got under way shortly after 11a.m. Paul Smith was first to the windward mark, and established a good lead which he held for 6 laps, but was constantly stalked by Stuart Snell, Bob Carter and Richard Hanby. However, further back, George Carter who was initially in 7th place was busy picking off boats one by one, and came through to third towards the end. On the last leg of the race, Smith was still keeping Snell at bay, but in the final 50yds, George Carter found an extra gear to gain a vital overlap on Smith, and so claimed victory in race 1.
After lunch was consumed, race two commenced around 1.30p.m, and with a heavily port-biased line, a brave Bob Carter was the only one to risk a port start, but after initially having to duck four transoms, managed to find a gap to cross the remainder of the fleet which set him up in clear air with a 50yd advantage, and proceeded to lead the race for 4 laps, followed initially by Mark Aldridge, George Carter, Richard and Steve Hanby. The wind though was having a game of it's own, blowing 18 knots at times, but then dropping to around 12 knots in parts, leading to some un-predictable place changes along the way. Mark Aldridge dropped out of the frame due to penalty turns, and on lap 5, Carter had passed father Bob to take up the lead again, whilst Smith had worked his way back into the frame by overhauling the Hanbys to take second. Richard Hanby also managed to take Bob Carter towards the end to earn himself a 3rd place, but Bob just managed to stop the rot by holding off father Hanby who finished 5th.
So the meeting ended with 2 firsts for George Carter which decisively won him the meeting overall, and now the fleet take a Christmas break before continuing at Rutland in January for round three.
Paul Smith, Beaver SC.
For the full results click here for the series table