26 December 2018 race report


Racing on Boxing Day has long been a Tamar Lake tradition and this Boxing Day was mild and dry and grey and nearly windless. Not quite windless, fortunately, but the breaths coming over the dam from the south were very gentle and a lap of the course set by John Duncalf  (volunteer Officer of the Day) took the leaders a good half hour.

The start was achingly slow; after the horn blew hours seemed to pass before Bob Sampson (Laser Full) crossed the line. He was followed by the Club’s Bosun helmed by Cilla Gilbert with Brian Pollard crewing, by Nathan Pollard’s Laser Full, Linda Spiller’s similar boat, John Dabbs’ Gull and Vicki Duncalf’s Topper. By the time they were rounding Dam Green, the first buoy, Nathan Pollard was close behind Bob Sampson and the Bosun had slipped to fifth. The pattern of the race was established on the run to Middle; Nathan Pollard closed on Bob Sampson, Linda Spiller struggled to keep up whilst the Dabbs Gull succeeded. On the long beat back from Pinkie to the start line a good choice of tacks put Nathan Pollard in front of Bob Sampson only for a gust (if anything so gentle could be called a gust) to return Bob to the lead. Linda Spiller retired at the end of the lap, nursing a knee.

The second lap was blessed with a little more wind and was in consequence a touch faster but there were no changes to the race order, Bob Sampson finishing half a minute in front of Nathan Pollard. John Dabbs, who had indeed sailed consistently and well, was able to benefit from the Gull’s marvellous handicap and took the victory.

  1. John Dabbs (Gull)
  2. Bob Sampson (Laser Full)
  3. Nathan Pollard (Laser Full)
  4. Vicki Duncalf (Topper)
  5. Cilla Gilbert and Brian Pollard (Bosun)

Retired: Linda Spiller (Laser Full)

Grateful thanks were given to John Duncalf for running the race, to Robin Spiller and James Pollard for manning the (unemployed) safety boat and to Mandy Pollard for taking the photographs.