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Old 15th Nov 2011, 13:29
  #35 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Dorking
Posts: 471
I'm only a yachty, but the following has always made I larf.

Reminds me of a Cowes Week race back in the mid 90s. A bunch of us were sailing a 1720 (open-transom sportsboat with a cockpit running right to the mast) while the owner schmoozed some clients on a stinkpot he'd borrowed. Typical Cowes Week start, off the Squadron with about 8-squillion knots of tide taking us towards Ryde, and almost no wind. Race committee decided to send everyone off down tide (which was also downwind) so as to get each fleet away from the start before the next one.

Our plan was to kedge uptide of the line, pull the hook up just before the gun and zoom off, downwind and down tide. So far so good. Then one of the guys pipes up "Hey, if we anchor stern-to we'll be pointing downwind, and we can get the kite up before the start..." Sounded like a good idea. A really, really good idea...

The anchor warp gets tied onto the transom and we chuck the hook over the back. The owner is hovering at a sedate distance in his stinkpot. There is also a RIB in the vicinity, with a commentator reporting live for Cowes Week Radio.

Those of you who are more awake will recall that I mentioned an open transom.

Just as we're starting to think about the kite, the hook hits the bottom and bites. The boat slows down, stops, and the transom sinks. About two feet. And's that's just to start with. Within a couple of seconds the entire crew are stood on the foredeck apart from me. I'm sat on the gunwhale, up to my waist in water, steering backwards with both hands, as the water comes past at 8-squillion knots. The owner is looking on from his stinkpot. His clients are taking photographs. Cowes Week Radio are commentating, live, to anyone who doesn't have a good enough view. The anchor line, attached to the transom, disappears into the water at 45 degrees. We can't even let it out, because it's attached to the boat with a bowline. From the foredeck a quiet voice announces '1 minute...'

Credit Dave S on Sailing Anarchy.
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