Saturday, March 5, 2005

2005 midwinters- Florida

Day 1 midwinters- light breeze today 6-12k with gust up to 15k and shifty. 79 formula boards on the line for a double windward leeward and reach to finish course. I sailed the f2004 11.7 in all races today. I started out with the r12 70 but couldn't find any angle do then switched to a r13 66 soft which brought much better results:1st race- 33, 2nd race- 13th, 3rd race 13th. Once I got dialed in with the new fin, I could hold my lane upwind and had much better speed. Thanks to Mike Percy for lending me the fin!

First race- A couple of general recalls as the fleet was stacked up on the small line. Black flag went up immediately after 1st general recall. There was still a lot of holes around the course, which I managed to find most of them. I got off the line and sailed to port layline but in the middle of the fleet but got stuck in some bad air and had to double tack to get around. Downwind- going well catching up in the flat water. Back upwind, there were plenty of light spots near the windward mark. I got stuck in a few and really fell back in the fleet to finish 33rd. Without good angle, I was really suffering on the long upwind reaches. There's no place you can hide with you more vulnerable weakness exposed. I had to make at least 2 double tacks to get around the windward mark.
Second race- breeze filling in some to 10-12k. Starting line was really small and fleet was parked on the line with 1-2min to go. I got up on line but with so many boards parked and time running out, I decided to duck down, get some speed and find a hole. Unfortunately, the hole, I jumped into was next to Antoine Albeau who really killed me off the line. The reality was that he was over early anyways and jumped the line. I managed to hit the port layline getting some bad air but sticking with it and get a decent race in keeping my spot near the top of the fleet to finish 13th. Both upwind and downwind, things we are good with me passing a few boards on each leg.

Third race- Wind really lighted up and there was a lot of chop off the line and I really didn't get going off the line but finally got off near the pin end and squeezed by the port end boat. I tried to overstand the marks just to keep some speed up and not to double tack. My speed and angle were much better this race. Off the leeward mark, I really seemed to be able to climb well once I found my own lane. I really worked hard upwind hiking out and keeping the sail sheeted in. Not a lot of tactics involved here but just going to the right side and making maneuvers with out fault.

Overall with 2 decent races and a 33 I am in 3rd place in the men's amateur fleet. Hopefully with a throw out, I can move up to 1st or 2nd and have a decent regatta.
Otherwise the new board and sails are working well. Once I got my fin dialed in , things seemed to improve.

Day 2-No racing today as we sat around waiting for the wind to develop but it never materialized beyond 6k. Forecast for Sunday looks like more of the same :(

Day 3- No racing today again today. Regatta was called at 3pm as the fickle breeze never got above 6knots. So it stands-3 races no throw outs- a mix up of results with some pretty patchy conditions. Bay area sailors fared well: Seth in 3rd, Percy in 8th, Fernando in 10th and me in 13th.

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