Tuesday, June 24, 2008

San Francisco Breeze.....sort of!

The last week has been busy with work and travel back to San Francisco for my quarterly trip back for work. Of course, this time, it was planned around the windy season in SF!
I arrived back to San Francisco last week and within a few hours after the 12 hours flight I found myself under the Golden Gate bridge riding the pacific swell once again.
The winds were strong in the middle of the Bay but getting there was the problem.
Nonetheless, I shlogged out to the windline and got a great session at the bridge with my 6.3 and ml slalom board with the SF kite crew who had their racing canceled that evening.
Ahh it was good to be back!
Friday was much the same as we prepared for a Friday night race at the St. Francis.
The formula crew here was kind enough to lend me some equipment leftover from last season!
But alas, even a 12.0 wasnt enough to get around the course for the twilight series so we headed up top to the bridge where the breeze was- catching some good rides at fort point in 12-18k and a wicked ebb tide.
Saturday brought the CalCup where again, we struggled to get to the course- set just upwind of his Lordships in Berkeley. Once there, however the breeze kicked in good for 4 wound up races. I borrowed a 10.0 Hansen sail form Percy and wow, what a handful! The sail had plenty of power in the breeze despite being pretty flat below the boom. I struggled to find my form again in the breeze but a few races in and I was sparring around the course with the leaders.

Mike Percy managed to sail away with 4 bullets in his home waters, showing good form and tactics in the breeze.
C-Rad was showing some amazing potential with his new line of formula fins.
The local boys have created an evolution of the C3 D series, making the foil softer and more responsive. I was pretty impressed with the angle and speed he was getting with a 68 cm fin in 18-25k. As usual there are a few suspects in the local fleet with some great form and speed.
On Sunday, with the skies ablaze from the recent wildfires, Crissy went off again for another sunset slalom session.
The breeze still had some south in in which made for a bouncy ride on port tack going straight into the chop upwind. Once over on starboard tack though, I had some of the fastest runs all season thinking I couldn't go any faster until I sheeted in, bore off and accelerated even more.
Fear was the only thing stopping me form going faster.
The trend continued into the week and by Wednesday evening I was out for the 5th time in 6 days. Quite a contract from the fickle dutch summer breeze!
I got a chance to try out the new finworks PRO fin this week- the one Fernando used to clean up at the US Nationals 2 weeks ago. My first impression without lining up against anybody was wow- quite a ride off the breeze! Very slippery.
Im anxious to try it out against the fleet here in the next 2-3 weeks while Im back in SF.
Up next, the nose will be against the grindstone for work but hopefully getting out on the water a few days a week after work for some training sessions and then on the 12 and 13th of July is the famed- SF Classic!