AT last the bad weather softened, allowing the Coffs Harbour Yacht Club fleet a return to the water.
However, it softened too much for the 11 boats contesting the Bellbowrie Motors Audi Twilight series, the comeback event from the New Year break.
With mid-summer here in all its glory, the skippers and crew were all champing at the bit to get back into hard competition.
But it was only a seven-knot nor-easter greeting them, which was a little too light for the heavier boats.
On the getaway, Offshore Captain Andrew Johnstone surprised everybody by laying a last-minute course not seen before.
It had yachts racing in and out of the harbour, and in the light conditions all skippers were challenged by the changing breeze as they came around Mutton Bird Island going both ways.
After the handicapper did the sums and subdued the grumbles, Our Nirvana, skippered by Peter Orr, took the win.
Our Nirvana was closely followed by B52, with Paul D’Olier at the helm, and third on the podium was Garry Innes in Renee.
Just over a year since arriving on the harbour, Renee has been the big improver on the racing scene, under the direction of the Commodore, after finishing second-last in the 2009-10 Twilight series.
“I would hope there has finally been some improvement in our standing,” Innes quipped.
“It’s only taken me the best part of a year to learn how to sail it.”
Renee’s 18 points kept her in second place behind series leader Booze Bus (14), skippered by Wayne Benson.