The first attempt to complete race one of the Yanmar Dragon Gold Cup 2019, for the prestigious Börge Börresen Trophy, had to be abandoned due to light winds at Medemblik, Netherlands.
Starting 96 highly competitive Dragons off a single line is not an easy job, but here in Medemblik not only had the committee set an excellent 0.9 mile long line, but their use of a pair of line location indicator buoys at approximately 0.3 and 0.6 miles along the line helped to produce one of the most even start lines you could hope to see.
The fleet was clearly on its best behaviour, their minds no doubt focused by the combined threat of disqualification under the U Flag penalty if they were over the line and the fact that there are no discards in the series and, most unusually for a Gold Cup, they got underway at the first time of asking.
The Dragons headed away from the line in 7-8 knots of wind and made a stunning sight spread out across the Ijsselmeer.
But as the Dutch team of Charlotte ten Wolde, rounded the first mark the wind was already dropping, and as the boats started down the run the wind began to drop even further and before long they were barely ghosting along.
It quickly became clear that there was no hope of a rapid return of the wind and the race committee wisely decided to abandon the race and try again
The forecast was for the wind to swing into the north and build again, but sadly it wasn’t to be and eventually the announcement came over the radio that all boats should return to harbour for the day.
The race committee immediately swung from race management to towing mode, rapidly getting all 96 teams on tow and headed back to Medemblik’s stunning old harbour where the Opening Ceremony awaited them.
Better winds are forecast for day two of the competition and the Race Committee aim to start racing on time at noon with a view to potentially completing two races.
Editor Note: much better wind this Monday morning and the forecast is for a north easterly to build from 10-18 knots this morning up to around 14-21 knots this afternoon.
A total of six races are scheduled with the results of all races to count. Racing continues until Friday 14 June.