With a light easterly wind and a flood tide, there was really only one possible course to set for the Cecil Howard Memorial Race this year: straight upriver to Coldham Hall with a running start. 14 yachts set off, with the “slow boat” split somewhere around 7% in the middle of the second start fleet.
With a relatively early tide, the race was started an hour earlier than usual, with the unfortunate side effect that everyone finished before the pub opened. It was a pleasant sail upriver in the sunshine, if somewhat frustrating at times in the light and fickle wind. Many thought the slower boats had been advantaged with a little more wind as the sea breeze began to fill in, but this turned out not to be the case.
Trophies were announced from the top downwards, leading straight into the news for Wandering Rose that they were this year’s custodian of the jugs. The Dave Valentine Memorial Trophy went to Maidie and the Green Wyvern Trophy (the tasteful one) for third place to Melinda. Hiawatha surprised themselves by coming in fourth, but being on a provisional handicap they were not eligible for the Ian Spoors trophy, which went to Puck, helmed by GWYC Commodore, Andy Garnham.