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FAST40+ Cannonball Run

  • 2019 Round 2 Fast 40+ Class Race Circuit
  • Final Race – 16 June, 2019
  • Organised by the Royal Motor Yacht Club, Poole, UK

It was all to play for for the final day of racing for Round 2 of the FAST40+ Race Circuit, despite the fact that the top two places had been decided with a race to spare. After two days of fast and furious windward leeward racing, Race Officer Stuart Childerley set a 25-mile coastal course from Poole Bay back to the Cowes in the Central Solent. After a two mile beat to a laid mark near Old Harry, the FAST40+ fleet pull the trigger, hooning downwind at top speed to North Head, which kept the fleet inshore with strategy and tactics in play. After passing through Hurst Narrows, the fleet lit the afterburners, propelled by 20 knots of wind over tide, it was a wet sleigh ride to the finish off Gurnard.

Peter Morton’s Girls on Film is firmly based in Cowes, and ‘Morty’ was delighted to lead his team back to their home port, having won the race in just over two hours of high speed racing. Girls on Film was second for the regatta, scoring all podium finishes.

“It was an epic, one of the all time good races, it’s not often you get to race from Poole to Gurnard in two hours!” laughed Peter Morton. “Rán are so quick upwind, but we are pretty even with them downwind. We caught them up all the way across Poole Bay, and we were just a couple of boat lengths behind them at Christchurch Bar. Rán broached and ripped their spinnaker, we did not do any damage and kept on going. These are quite physical boats, because they really light up, and we sail them in big conditions, which some classes don’t always do. We have a good team on board, and we can handle the boat when it gets tough, and it’s a lot of fun.”

Ed Fishwick’s Redshift, also based in Cowes, will be celebrating tonight, after finishing second place in the last race by under a minute from Girls on Film. The result put Redshift on the regatta podium. An amazing achievement in their second FAST40+ event.

“With three miles to go, we were as good as overlapped with Rán, and we were managing to match them for speed. Rán gybed away and we did not, we followed Girls on Film in front, and that worked very well,” commented Ed Fishwick. “The race result was great but to come third for the regatta is just amazing. We came into the class thinking we might be right at the back of this fleet, to be able to compete with such well sailed boats, is just fantastic. The Redshift team have done a lot of sailing on other boats but they keep telling me this is the best racing they have ever done, and we are all having a lot of laughs, which is also a big part of it.”

Niklas Zennstrom’s Rán had won the regatta with a race to spare, and came third in the last race. However, Rán had a big incentive to do well in the last race, as the team will not be competing in the next round, the boat will compete in the Gotland Runt in Sweden. The FAST40+ Race Circuit allows six races to be discarded, so every point is valuable to Rán, especially as they will miss Round 3.

The 2019 FAST40+ Race Circuit continues with Round 3 back in the Solent. Racing at the RORC IRC National Championship, the FAST40+ Class will be in action from the 5-7 July, 2019.

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