Congratulations to Ian and the crew from J/122 “Joss” who won IRC Div 1 in the Fremantle to Albany Race, arriving in Albany at 4.30 am after 40hrs at sea in changing & challenging conditions. Read on for the crew report…..
“We started in a light easterly at 11am Fri morning, the winds soon built by the windmills off Rottnest & by Friday night we had 20 knot southerly with 3m+ seas and it was “dark” – really ”difficult” sailing with limited visibility.
As expected “Dirty Deeds” lead the fleet with “Obsession” & “Joss” chasing, however there was a “Fantastic” battle close behind between sister ships “Crush” & “Kraken” and “Atomic Blonde”, these lighter extremely versatile 36fts were keen to push us in race conditions that agreed with them.
The fleet rounded “Cape Leeuwin” early Sat morning to sail into the great Southern Ocean. A close procession of yachts waiting for the forecast strong WNW’s, “Obsession” was still trailing “Deeds” who went further out to sea searching for stronger winds, unfortunately “Obsession” stayed to close in & the winds were quiet, this allowed “Joss” to raise our big “Green A1.5” and slowly but surely make some gains. Unfortunately for us the 3 sisters – “Atomic Blonde, Crush & Kraken” were hot on our heels – it needed the weather gods to get excited which they did!
Sat night was full on!!!20-30 knot WNW winds & a good size sea behind & plenty to play with. And play the fleet did, “Joss” had several massive broaches & again hit a top speed of around 21knots. A massive wrap around midnight meant several anxious minutes trying to unwind our Red A4 from around our forestay. Once achieved a more controllable A3 went up!!
“Obsession” blew up their A4, “Atomic Blonde” has even more fun “flying different parts” of their A4 & then wrapping it around the rudder! More & more broaches, very wet crews & lots of great bar stories to be told.
“Joss” trailed “Deeds” into Albany in the early hours of Sunday with “Kraken” less than 1 mile behind us & clearly having had a brilliant sail. The winds lightened & they ever so slowly caught up, but “not enough” to stop us being 2nd over the line!
Whilst the official results are still to come, “Joss” closed out the ORWA Ocean Racing Summer Series with a 3rd place overall, being beaten by Kraken & then Crush.
“Joss” did win IRC Div 1 & YAH honours a Fantastic result to close out an extremely successful season.“