Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Day 1 US Windsurfing Champs/Formula North Americans

Day 1 of the 2010 US Windsurfing Championships in San Francisco started in overcast SF skies with the breeze never really filing into its full potential.
4 races were run in 15-20k and a flat water flood tide.
No voodoo chop just yet but some spectacular racing in very tight competition among the 46 man formula fleet.
Paulo Des Rios from Brazil took control from the start capturing 3/4 bullets while on his north 12.0 while the rest of fleet sailed on 10-11m rigs in the building breeze
Phil McGain stole the 2nd race as BRA333 took a flyer to the shore off the leeward mark and gave up the race.
Aurlien Le Metayer- racing on a mikes lab formula board after good results this w-end- looked like he was going to take race 3 after a commanding lead from the windward mark but took the puff right into shore with out a another puff to bring him back out to the leeward mark. BRA333 and BRA999 took advantage of the more consistent wind in the middle of the SF Bay and passed him to finish out the top 3.
With a small break between race and 4 many sailors took the opportunity to scale down their kits to a smaller fin and rig. I went from the NP 10.7 and Z fin down to a NP 9.5 and kashy 70 but it just wasnt enough as the flood tide got the better of me at several marks and I had to double tack to make the top and bottom marks.
SF sailor Seth Besse is putting in the best local performance - sitting in 5th after the days racing.
phot0 credit: Shawn Davis
Crad and Al are both 1 point in front of me but hopefully with some redress points after tomorrows hearing- things will look better for me. Xavier and I got tangled up in race 4 at the windward mark but both felt we were in the right- so it's up to the jury to decide!
I felt really fast with good angle in 3/4 races always passing the guys in front of me but got set back by some sloppy rounding and bad laylines. It wasn't until the 3rd race when I got pretty OP'ed on the 10.7 and super soft fin that I couldn't really put the hammer down.
So far the fleet has been split on the starts with the port tackers charging the line not backing down for the approaching starboard tackers running the line. I didnt have that much confidence knowing a simple collision could take me out for the regatta- so I ended up ducking most of the starboard fleet but getting off to the right side- which seemed more favored.
phot0 credit: Shawn Davis
Downwind- it's all about staying in the pressure as things got lighter inside but occasionally the gods would be smiling and send down a personal puff taking you right to the mark.
I had some good battles with ESP- 71 but he always seemed to come out on top.
Now- it's just waiting for the breeze to kick in and applying the local knowledge that works so well.
Photos: http://www.picyourshot.com/event/2010-US-Windsurfing-Nationals
Waterhound report: http://www.waterhound.com/us-windsurfing-national-championships-and-formula-north-americans-day-1-report.html


Myles B said...

Hats off to you, Steve for doing this fine reporting at 11 pm while most of us are in dreamland.It is appreciated. Myles B

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