Vision, the new Sailfish 18 of the Balaton Group made her racing debut at the November 13th SAMM race day, and what a debut it was.
Perfect racing weather greeted the competitors, fewer than usual as many non-resident SAMM members had left for home. A sunny day, small waves and a steady NNE breeze of 8-10 knots, good for the heavier day boats but not to strong for the dinghies.
An excellent start for the first race at 11.30 with all five boats across the line within 18 seconds for their first circuit of the square course. Shoestring Dos, a light Laser 2000, took the lead completing the lap in 9mins 35 secs with the last boat, the much heavier Balaton Sirocco taking 13mins 21 secs with the rest of the fleet spaced out between them. This continued until lap 4 when the Shoestring Omega had to retire when a shroud failed. Although Vision finished third in the hour long race, the application of the handicaps gave her the winning average lap time of 479secs.
At 12.50 the wind had increased to 10-12 knots but the start of the second race was a repeat of the first with Vision over the line bang on the start signal closely followed by the other four. This time the Omega, having fixed the shroud problem, soon took the lead and held it until the finish. Dos and Cuatro, close behind, were having a real tussle. Dos had the edge but was only 2 secs ahead at the end of the first lap, 25 secs on lap 2, 7 secs on lap 3, and 9 secs on lap 4. Then Cuatro seemed to loose concentration and the gap opened to 4 minutes over the last two laps. Meanwhile Vision kept up a great performance to again take first after handicaps in an average lap time of 415 secs. A brilliant performance by Robert and Jurgen on Vision to take the double in her first appearance.
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