Saturday, May 1, 2010

Friday Night racing @StFYC

Round 2 of the Friday night series @ the St Francis Yacht Club kicked off with a solid 20-30k.
After 5 days of not sailing, it was a viscous welcome back with a steep ebb tide and strong fleet. With almost a 3 year hiatus from formula windsurfing, now SF local, Seth Besse managed a perfect night with 5 bullets while I held onto 2nd just in front of Al Mirel.

Friday Night Formula Windsurfing at the St FYC 4-30-2010 from David Wells on Vimeo.

As the winds tapered off, it looked like things might get easier but random puffs and 30 degree shifts kept everyone on their toes until the final 5th race.
Normally I like to get my kit dialed in before I start to race it but I made the decision to run the new north 10.0 with only 1 day of training on it. I wasnt quite able to find the speed off the line as the juniors made a habit of parking right in front of me with 10 seconds to go. Sometimes racing is more about getting out of your own way than getting around in front of others. Nonetheless, I had to dig deep to claw my way back through the fleet and salvage the night.
Race 1 say Seth and I battle it it till the last tack and cross the finish within a board length of each other. In short sprint like races, like the Friday night series, every little thing counts...speed, angle, laylines. No room for any mistakes!
Race 2 and 3 saw similar conditions but Soheil got the jump and pressured Seth till the finish while I made some comeback moves to cross just in front of Al for 3rd in both races.
As the wind decreased in strength, it became apparent that a good lane off the line was essential but I still managed to find room for operator error and didn't quite pull the trigger in time. Somehow, despite double tacking the windward mark, I still managed a 3rd with some smart sailing and good tactics. Still in front Seth scored another bullet with Al in tow for 2nd.

Thanks to Arnaud for the video
In the 5th and final race, things lightened up significantly to where there where holes all around the course with the random puff pushing or pulling sailors from the lead to DFL in the course of 1 leg. I didnt quite get my head wrapped around things and used the final race for my throwout to finish the evening in 2nd.
Overall- consistent but room for improvement as I made some critical mistakes at the starts that set me back significantly.

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