Javelin 3 2008
Hire Cruiser: Javelin 3 (2008)
Posted by Pauline Purcell, 3rd June, 2008
We were in Javelin 3 and moored up in Horning before the race, Mat came alongside in Perfect Lady and introduced himself, (what a wonderful job he's doing on that boat, looked 'Perfect' and when we saw him at Thurne Mouth, was sailing perfectly too). I prefer tell-tales to burgee so up went the Norfolk Broads Forum flag as our rectangular sailing flag.
Gary appeared with Neil, great to meet you Neil, and we stocked up on bacon butties and tea at the sailing club. What a super piece of organisation Colin and all, many thanks indeed.
We went up to the start and got sorted. This was the first time we sailed together as a crew due to work commitments etc. so we went up river and played about a bit. Coming back to the start was better than the dodgems on the Pleasure Beach! Eventually we battled through the last starters and got over the line, 'cheered' by the information that the first lot were already at the Ant.
The next section went very well in episodes, i.e. bilge pump comes on and chucks out several buckets-worth of water; we overtake several boats, bilge off, they overtake us, bilge on, we overtake the same boats... you get the picture??
The decision to do the Ant first was not the best one ever made, by the time we got there, current was stronger than wind and we spent a more-than-sufficient time getting acquainted with a very short stretch. After a while, a long while, skipper he sez to me, 'Let's forget this and come back later.' Fair enough I thought, and so we turned back and sped out of the Ant. I reckoned privately that that was the end of our race, but it still made sense, we could have been there twice the time and not progressed until the run out slackened.
The decision to do South Walsham next seemed better, good wind and we shot down there, rounded the buoy and slipped along happily back until we got to the last bend with trees...at this point we put down roots, moved in and bought a telly!! 45 minutes later we covered the 100 yards or so that brought us out of the tree shadow and sent us on our way. I shall miss that clump of Flag Iris, we saw it at the end of tack after tack!
Away to the Thurne Mouth and the decision to go north or South. I suggested North to the skipper 'cos I had no expectation that we would now finish, we had lost a lot of time and the other crew member was suffering; a repetitive strain injury to your back is not a pointer to happiness in 3RR, I have found.
Up to Potter, Griff now apparently watching telly on Broad Ambition?? Not enough excitement outside???! Mat going well. Cygnet came out to say ‘Hello’, thanks Cygnet, for the lovely warm greeting.
Skipper's more used to sea sailing, bungalows trees and hire cruisers are quite a culture shock...there are very few trees at sea, after all.
THEN we got to Potter Bridge, it's mayhem up there, like something out of a Keystone Cops movie! We drop the mast but don't use the crutches 'cos they were too high for the bridge at lowish water the day before and scraped along the top unpleasantly. Now this meant that the counterweight was higher than the bl**&y arch and so we bounced back to the HUGE delight of the onlookers. So my plan of coming through on the tide turned into tide pushes boat across against bridge. Skipper takes helm and mast on shoulder, crew with 'back' now forced to paddle with me. The bridge 'ole as they say on the cut, is looking MUCH smaller than it usually does. I peer through and hear a resounding cry of 'It's Pauline!' and 'We're coming through' from FBinYBA. 'S&^ off' I reply elegantly, this is no time for etiquette!
Much to the disappointment of the ghouls above, we get straight and get through. 'It'll be dark when you come back' they cry, 'You might like to know Anglia TV have just left' they add - 'pity that.'
We get the mast up and take stock, oh yes, at this point the port nav light jettisons its top, bulb & tinted diffuser in the river, and the sun goes down... not to worry, I have a clever plan.
Mutiny! Crew is now suffering back pain real time & says 'I am not going back under that bridge again, sorry, no way.' We quite see her point and decide to head for Martham, moor and eat stew prepared earlier in pressure cooker. No problem we've had a good go at it. I called Phill up at the Maltsters and arranged a pick-up.
Now I wondered what the red & green flags were for on the equipment list. I can tell you. They are for wrapping round a torch and sticking on with duck tape when yer nav light gets kicked overboard. Brilliant.
We sailed on feeling soo smug that three boats in our hire class motored down past us while we were still (officially) racing. We moored up at Martham and tucked in. It was 11pm and we had sailed 12 hours, we could've won in that time in a Norfolk Punt so there is a moral in there somewhere....I think!
Do it again?? Oh I think so. Actually, I loved it! Maybe finish next time! But the right decision was made this year I am sure.
[Editor's Note: "Javelin 3" is recorded as "Javelin" in the Starters Lists and Race Results]
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