Friday, June 29, 2012

Friday night smack down

5 races tonight in a gusty 15-25k breeze & big flood tide. It looked pretty tame by the time we rigged at 4:45 and I was almost ready to rig the 10.7 in anticipation of a dying breeze but Im glad I didnt as the city front spastic puffs rolled through making it a hang onto your pants kind of day!
Race 1- I started just I windward of Crad & he pinched me off on the 1st upwind as I was still trying to dial things in. I footed below him, rounding 2nd  but caught up on the downwind passing right over him on the 1st reach. Gybes were super sketchy as you had to do 3 in about 30 seconds in course B.
I rounded just behind him at leeward mark and he exploded on his tack near shore as the puffs were really coming in strong. I tacked and it looked like I would have it but got a big knock just at the finish forcing me I do 2 tacks and CRAD got the win by a few feet
I was super op'ed so I came in between races and put 1/2" more downhaul on and  had better control the next race
Race 2 slow getting to start line as I left beach at 4 min and got rolled again with Crad jumping right over me off the line.
Big puffs were super spastic & the fleet was getting lots of knockdowns. I heard a big bang off the start and looked back to see Tom had just broken his north mast right off the line. (That's the 2nd north mast in a week that broke as Eric suffered a broken mast on his way out to the Calcup last week.) I barely held onto 2nd as the Fz 71 was as still very powerful and I was getting lifted right out of the water in several of the big puffs.
I came in and switched down to zf 68 fin and had much better control in 3rd race but got screwed at leeward mark rounding in front as the GGYC big boat fleet was starting and Eric snuck in there to take the bullet while I managed another 2nd. Sometimes its all about timing and there's not much I could have done.

Race 4- I didn't call layline on flood tide again and sailed too far. Eric stuck in there again to get to the top mark 1st. He's got good speed in big breeze both up and down and I couldnt catch him at all. The good news was my equipment was starting to feel very comfortable in the breeze and no problems on startboard tack like I was having before.2nd again but happy.

Last race. Good speed and angle all around leading the race but carried it to the wall too far and got stuck in a really light spot letting Tom get the last bullet just overlapped at the finish.
Overall- good leaning more about the equipment. 10.0 avanti sails better with 1-2cm not downhaul than I had before. Z 68 fin has much better control and still good speed and angle. I m beginning to get a much better feel for my quiver- knowing how it will react in what conditions but in hindsight should have had the 9.5 ready to go as that's the better high wind sail.
I made several small mistakes costing me 2-3 bullets but sailed consistantly 2nd with 5 2nds.
Eric took the bullet for the night grabbing 3 bullets while the rest of the fleet sailed somewhat inconsistently in  crazy puffy winds.  At the end of the day, its not really how the rest of the fleet sails but how well you sail against yourself!

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