Sail for Gold Day 1
Apologies for not posting last night. On top of hitting the dock around 8pm, going straight to dinner, and arriving home at 10, our internet was down last night. Turned the data on my iPhone on to send out a quick tweet and figured I’d wait until the morning to update. Long day yesterday, spent three hours on the water initially for an 11 AM start in a dying northwesterly. It glassed off and we were sent in for a lengthy wind delay. A light SW breeze picked up late and we towed back out to the course at 5:15. Waited for the radials to finish their last race and we were off around 6:30. I finished 10th in difficult conditions and feel I sailed a solid race. Photo Cred: Mick Anderson
Approaching Windward Mark. Photo Cred: Mick Anderson
The radial races allowed the full rigs to gain some intel on what was going on. It seemed like there was less current and more breeze on the right side of the race course and given where most of the fleet was setting up at the start, everyone wanted the right side. Not wanting to get caught around too many boats in light air, I shifted to leeward of the boat pack and was near the middle of the line at go. I had a good start, but 5 boats that started near the pin were able to tack and cross the fleet. On top of the pin being a bit favored, I was probably off the line by a little since I was in the middle.
Ducked the crossing boats very closely and continued on starboard a bit. Tacked into a nice lane with pressure and was on the hip of the leading pack of 5 going right. We spent a bit of time on port and as we made our way well into the right side of the course, I started to fall into them, indicating a shift. I tacked to starboard and felt I had good pressure and angle. Glanced over my shoulder and saw two boats from the lead pack do the same thing.
Unfortunately, the top right side of the course was very strong and I was never able to cross over and get into pressure that a lot of boats on the right got near the top. In hindsight, I should have continued right instead of tacking, seeing as the majority of the fleet was on the right. Rounded in the teens.
Beside this mistake, I was happy with the rest of the race. Held the first reach and separated from the pack that was fighting high by diving low and was able to close a lot of distance on the top 10. Rounded the course left gate, picked a good time to tack onto port, and led a pack of 5 going right. The rest of the beat, I did my best to play shifts and take opportunities while making sure I didn’t separate too much from my nearest rivals. Picked off a couple more and rounded the top mark in 10th. Had another good downwind to close a lot of distance, but 7-9 rounded just ahead of me leaving me in 10th at the finish.
A 10′s a keeper and I know my main mistake from the race so it’s good race to build off of. We have 3 races planned today in big breeze so it will be a testing day. The rest of the week is forecasting big breeze and weather, check out the forecast: http://www.windguru.cz/int/index.php?sc=133. Should be interesting!