Friday, July 24, 2009

US Windsurfing Nationals Day 2 report

5 more slalom heats run today in epic gorge conditions.
By late morning, the breeze had filled into 20-30 and plenty of sunshine and 70 degree water temps. What more could you ask for!
The fleets were divided with the top half of yesterdays racing bumping up to the gold fleet.
With a bit of creative redress from yesterdays on the water fiascoes, I managed to sneak into the top half- but barely as yesterdays sad attempt at racing in 40k put me just shy of the top half of the fleet. Yesterday, Soheil and I got into a port/starboard collision while rounding the top tacking mark of the slalom course. There wasn't much either of us could do to avoid the collision but like any altercation on the course, if your in the right, it's always best to follow through with a protest and redress.
Once in the gold fleet things got progressively better with a 2nd off the bat in the first race behind Bruce and bullet in heat 4 where the top 2 were DSQ with the black flag.
Heats 8 and 9 saw me fighting in the group just behind the leaders. I had some great opportunities to pass on the short gybing legs and stayed well powered on my 105l F2 slalom board with 42 cm fin and 7.3 north warp
The final race was almost perfect.
Dennis from NZ and I peeled off from the fleet on the first leg in a solid 20-25k breeze. I held off Prior and Bruce with better speed around the course just up until the finish where I blew the last tack and they passed me.
AHHHH!!
Overall a great day of racing with a solid performance and improvements throughout the day. Now if I can just learn to close the deal!
For all the races, I was on my 105l F2 slalom board with 42 cm fin and 7.3 north warp. I made the most gains on the upwind leg where I eased off on the outhaul and used my leverage to crank on the fin. The other guys in the fleet seemed significatly off on this leg and I used everything I had to take advantage of that.
The course was very technical with 6 gybes and 2 tacks putting a favor on board handeling skills. Speed was essential off the line with the first leg a long drag strip towards the event site.
3 quick gybe marks with plenty of carnage made for some exciting mark rounding.
As Race Director, Darren Rogers started- it's a "mostly slalom course" but puts emphasis on the whole package. If you were weak in anything, this course found it and you had to deal with it somehow!
Saturday and Sundays racing will be Formula favored with lighter winds expected and no course racing yet in the Nationals.

9 am skippers meeting puts me to bed early tonight.
Be sure to check out the photo links at windsports mag and more photos from Bryan
and results at Vmgevents.com
Steve
USA 4


Sent from my iPhone

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Steve - thanks for the updates. Sounds like challenging but fun slalom racing up there, wish I was there! Say hi to James. Cheers, chris_bel29

Christena said...

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