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Today was the final day of the 2017 Antigua Sailing Week and we only had one race scheduled for all classes as they needed to get back to their berths or moorings in time to get ready for the daily prize giving and the big awards ceremony later on in the evening. The scores must have been close for some of the boats, as they were quite aggressive on the starting line and one race had so many yachts OCS (on-course-side before the start signal) that our race officer had to sound a general recall for all racers in that class. The other classes had the occasional boat over as well. All was going like a well-oiled machine until the big Russian catamaran, “Helicat Red” crossed the finishing line on a port tack and then proceeded to tack very ponderously and slowly. Before they'd completed the manoeuvre and gotten away they had drifted back onto our mooring ball and snagged it in their rudder and/or propeller shaft. I sent Karen forward with a kitchen knife in case Steve couldn't untie our mooring line under pressure and got the engines going while the finish crew was busy scoring racers. Once it was clear that Helicat Red wasn't going get away and might crash into us Steve dropped our mooring and subsequently Helicat Red got the gear untangled but unfortunately dropped the line in 50 meters of water which means that the ground tackle might be lost forever.
This happened with less than half of our racers having finished, so for the rest of the race I fought to keep our committee boat in position on approximately the same line between finish buoy and shore that we were on before - a task made difficult by the huge windage on our Catana catamaran, exacerbated by the tiny under sized engines and the strong current and big swell did their share to make it a challenging exercise. Yet we managed to finish all the boats and those who noticed that we were no longer umbilically attached to anything didn't say anything and luckily no racer protested.
Once back ashore we got the boat cleaned up and removed all flagpoles and holders, reattached the sheets to the jib and genoa and got the mainsail halyard working again (it had been pre-empted to serve as a haul for our big "C" (committee) flag. Then a cold beer got our spirits up and all of us separated in order to get ready for the evening's big awards ceremonies. I arrived in time to get a table for our group (unlike last year there were no reserved tables) and pulled out our 3 bottles of sparkling wine from their double-sealed cooler bags.