"Windy, tiring, 4 whole races and I still have salt in my eyelashes" said Scarlett Shepherd after Day 4 of the Navigators & General Mirror Europeans at Brixham YC.
A very different day presented itself to the Mirror Europeans fleet at Brixham this morning. A building forecast, reaching 23 knots by the end of the day, allowed 4 races to be run.
In race 1 Eleanor Keers & Izzy Pugh lead Angus & Fraser Hemmings around the windward mark and whilst Eleanor & Izzy held their position Angus & Fraser were overtaken by Rachel Grayson & Gemma Francis Burnett thanks to some excellent boat handling from the girls.
The overall leaders showed their form in race 2 with Rachel & Gemma, Gemma & Imogen and Tiarnan & Luke leading the fleet around the first mark. Some position changes downwind meant that Shane McLoughan & Oscar Langan get in on the chocolates in 3rd with Rachel & Gemma winning and Tiarnan /Luke 2nd.
Gemma Keers & Imogen Bellfield sailed a perfect beat to reach the windward mark first in race 3. However tussles with Rachel Grayson & Gemma Francis Burnett on the first reach, and Shane McLoughlin & Oscar Langan on the second meant they dropped to 3rd at the leeward mark. Scarlett Shepherd & Harvey Martin capitalised on the other boats individual competitions to follow Rachel & Gemma up the beat and take 2nd in the race with Robert Richardson & Megan Thornley sailing a brilliant second beat to secure 3rd.
Race 4 was the windiest race of the event so far, much to the delight of Emma Clayton & Faye Haswell who led Angus & Fraser Hemmings around the mark. The Hemmings played the breezy reach well to overtake the girls. These 2 boats then extended their lead with Irish teams Tiarnan Dickson & Luke Groake Donargh and Conor Twohig & Jack Gibney in third and fourth respectively. A special mention should go to Gemma Francis Burnett who showed great determination to finish Race 4 despite having sustained a ligament injury halfway up the beat.
Points are relatively tight at the top going into the final day of racing with many teams finding their form as the week has progressed.
A small seclection of photos from day 4 - photos © Gareth Fudge used with permission