Tuesday, July 25, 2017

2017 RS Aero World Championship - Day 2

Three more races in similar conditions to yesterday, but starting a bit lighter and perhaps not reaching quite as strong in the highs. Race committee set Triangle-Windward-Leeward-reach to finish courses instead of yesterday's quadrilaterals. The forecast was for the WNW wind to shift to the W early, then be basically steady.

Again I got out early and did the homework. Oddly, the current seemed to be similar across the course, unlike yesterday. Did two splits with young Liam Willis and came out of the left with a 5 boatlength lead, the right ahead by 10. Right sounds right, right?

Wrong! The race committee set the line with a 10 degree left-hand favor. I saw it on my compass in the pre-start, but still went for the boat and got what felt like a great start, only to watch Thomas SanddstrÖm (SWE, natch) crossing 8 boatlengths ahead coming out of the left after 5 minutes, with Greg (Quadzilla) Bartlett (GBR) and Matt Thursfield (GBR) well to windward of HIM. I tacked to join them on port and minimize the damage, then pulled out far enough before hitting the starboard tack layline to be able to tack and cross Thomas. Greg and Matt were ahead at the first mark, however. Somewhere over the next three legs I managed to catch Matt, only to capsize on the run.

It was stupid really: I pulled up my daggerboard to clear it of weed, but was a bit too enthusiastic and yanked the board right out of its slot! I managed to stay upright for a while and desperately tried to get the board back into the boat, which was gyrating like crazy in the unsettled seas. Finally a wave fell out and I flipped to windward, still holding onto the darn daggerboard! It was now a mad dash to get it back into the slot before the boat turned completely over; I was successful, which allowed me to right the boat and get going again. Unfortunately, the distance lost was too great and I had to settle for 3rd behind Quadzilla who ran away for the win, and Thursfield.

I *do* try to learn from mistakes...
Only now did I remember the forecast had said the breeze would go left! Again, the line was port-end biased, but this time I won the pin, and in 15-17 knots, pulled out to a big lead over the fleet before tacking and crossing. Huge lead at the top mark that extended to over 1.5 minutes at the finish.

This time the boat was favored and I had some company up there. Held my lane, then extended on the boats around to round the first mark 15 boatlengths ahead. Sailing down the reach the boat just didn't feel right, and sure enough, every time I looked back Liam Willis and Quadzilla were getting closer. Then I ran into a light patch of wind right near the mark and fell off a plane, which allowed the lads to roar up behind.

Managed to round Mark 2 with a 3 boatlength lead, but 3/4 of the way down the leg young Liam managed to sail over the top and into the lead! The tail end of the 7 fleet was also approaching the leeward mark on a run, and I managed to get Liam caught up with one of them while I peeled off to leeward to round the mark two boatlengths ahead (rather proud of that... grin). I extended again on the beat, nailing the starboard tack layline to the mark and rounded with a comfy 10 boatlength lead.

It was quite puffy and the waves were quite steep, with lots of weird waves bouncing around at different angles. I was going alright, but had a feeling there was weed on my daggerboard so lifted it up to clear it. No, I didn't yank it out of the boat. But, I did manage to pull it up right when a puff and odd wave hit at the same time, causing me to capsize yet again! It took a bit longer to get the boat up, more than enough time for 17-year old Liam to move into the lead, which he easily held to the finish. His first bullet in a World Championship!

Lucky for me, Liam's 6, 6 in Races 4 and 5 somewhat mitigated the pesky 1. He sits 8 points back, tied with Greg Bartlett at 14 points and Matt Thursfield 3 points behind them. I have a 1, 1, 1, 3, 1, 2, with the 3 as a throw-out for 6 points total.

I seem to have dominant upwind pace in over 15 knots of wind, and, despite the slows in the last race, am equal or faster downwind as well. Three more days of sailing to go, we'll see if the conditions change, or remain the same!

Monday, July 24, 2017

2017 RS Aero World Championship - Day 1

Wow, what a way to start a World Championship! Left the beach at 11:45 in about 12 knots of breeze, which some swore built to 25 as the day went on. I would say it was about 17, maybe 20 in the puffs, quite steady in direction but with a lumpy sea state punctuated by occasional sets that were real boat stoppers upwind. It was a long, 5-hour day at the office to get in 3 races for all three fleets (5, 7 and 9 rigs).

The course sailed by the 9s was a triple quadralateral (windward-reach-run-reach x3), with each race taking the leaders about 45 minutes to complete. The reaches were fantastic: super fast, flat-out hiking and occasionally surfing the big sets down. The runs were challenging, especially when the water was chopped up by other boats, and several flipped while attempting to gybe from a run to a reach going around Mark 3.

I got out early to the racecourse to do a little reconnaissance: checking current at the right, middle and left sides of the course. Then, Ben Rolfe from the UK and I did two, 3-minute splits (sailing 3 minutes toward opposite sides of the course, then tacking back to the middle and seeing who came out ahead). Finally, I got compass readings for the start line and wind direction. From all this, I deduced the right side of the course was favored for the first (upwind) legs, and set myself up accordingly.

Got a clean start at the committee boat and quickly tacked onto port. Dug into the right until I got a bit of a header and tacked back. Greg (Quadzilla) Bartlett came booming in out of the left middle to lead at the first mark; I was in 2nd with Liam Willis (UK) in 3rd. Greg took off on the reach but was heading to the wrong mark; I yelled out to let him know and he was able to retain his lead at Mark 2, but I managed to get inside at Mark 3 and, with a fast gybe, was able to extend out to a nice lead at the finish. Liam snuck in ahead of Greg for 2nd.

The breeze was building and squirmed a smidge left as Race 2 went underway. For some reason several people started at the port (left) side of the line, even though the starboard side was at least 5 degrees favored. Again I got a fast start at the boat, tacked over fairly quickly, but this time dug, dug, dug into the right until the wind started edging right before tacking and crossing the fleet. Led handily at every mark, only to capsize while gybing at the last mark before the final leg to the finish! Luckily I was able to climb over the top and quickly right the boat in time to hold off the rapidly-closing Liam; then, sailing deeper but just as fast, pulled out to a 15 boatlength lead by the finish.

Quite lumpy for the start, and with starboard tack being favored, most of the fleet stayed on starboard for quite a long time before tacking compared to the prior 2 heats. This was my first time to be lined up with top sailors (remember, I'd tacked away quickly before), and I was pleased to note I had good pace and when needed, point. It  seemed many were letting their boats heel (tip over) a bit more when puffs or bad wave sets came up, which caused them to slide sideways. I had to be very aggressive with the sheet to avoid a similar fate, but the work paid off with less sideslip and equal or better speed. Had some mixing with the 7 fleet as they started close to the leeward mark I was going around the leeward mark, which caused some interesting boat-on-boat interactions...

So, 3 races, 3 bullets. Not a bad way to start the regatta indeed! :)  Forecast for tomorrow is much of the same, and it's past midnight, so time to sign off. Sleep well, wherever you are.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

2017 RS Aero World Championship - T-Minus 1 Day

Drizzly, grey skies in Carnac for the last day before Worlds. RC postponed ashore for an hour then sent the fleet out in a dying southwesterly for the practice race.

The forecast was for the breeze to go left until about 2, then go right and build. On the way out, staying left seemed to work, confirming the forecast. The breeze went a further 20 or so degrees left, forcing the committee to postpone our start while they shifted the course to compensate. Still, the start line was very left-favored.

Most of the 9s realized the left favor and started at that side of the line. I punched out early from the fleet and managed to tack and cross the fleet after a minute or so of sailing. The waves were quite confused and I was having a bit of trouble keeping going, allowing my training partner Madhavan Thirumalai to sail through to leeward. At one point it looked like he was really launched, but I managed to play a number of small shifts/puffs to squeak into the lead at the first mark.

The first reach was very light and difficult due to the sloppy seas. The jury boat came and observed us for nearly half the leg, which was a bit unnerving. Since this was only a practice race I asked if we were OK, to which the judge replied "barely!" Right on the line, that's where one wants to be! ;)

The breeze was really dying by the time we got to the reach mark, and further died on the second reach. About 2/3 to the leeward mark the race committee sent a RIB to tell us they were abandoning the race, and to head home. The shoreline wasn't really visible at that point, so I just aimed my boat in the approximate direction of home. Was close enough. :)

Opening ceremonies followed at 1800 hours. International Class Manager Peter Barton reeled off some impressive stats: 96 entries from 16 countries and 4 continents for this, the very FIRST, RS Aero World Championship. Am so stoked to be part of history in the making!

After awards had a lovely dinner with 5 other sailors. Now I'm back at the flat. Clothes and food for tomorrow are all laid out, I'm freshly showered and ready for bed. Big day tomorrow!

Saturday, July 22, 2017

2017 RS Aero World Championship, Carnac France – T-minus 2 Days

Carnac, on the Brittany Coast in the state of Bretange, is at about the latitude of my home in Connecticut. The weather so far, however, has been quite different from what I left, being rather cool (in the 60s-70s) and quite windy. I’m glad to have packed a light jacket at the last minute!

The days leading up to a big away event are about settling in and getting into the regatta routine. I woke up and made my (in?)famous green drink: greens (preferably kale), carrot, banana and a small handful of walnuts (that provide a bit of fat to help digest the greens). It sounds gross, but I’ve really come to love it and this, along with a boiled egg, are a healthy, surprisingly filling start to the day.

Aeros, Aeros, everywhere Aeros!
My little AirBNB is a 5 minute walk from the Yacht Club de Carnac, host site for the Worlds. The 96 Aeros have taken over a quarter of the club’s huge drystall area—it’s quite a sight! Today more teams from the UK, Germany, Sweden, Estonia and other countries rolled in, many with impressive multi-boat trailers. The boatpark was filled with sailors getting acquainted, renewing old friendships, and foreign languages. Pretty cool! 

I was still feeling a bit draggy after the long trip, so my goal for the day was to go out for a sail, but not push myself too hard. After a tasty lunch I joined young UK sailors Greg (Quadzilla) Bartlett and Liam Willis for a short sail, about an hour of reaching offshore, two windward-leewards, then reaching back home. It was blowing about 15 knots, maybe a touch more at first. I tried my new heavy air mode upwind and found there wasn’t quite enough breeze to pull it off: Liam directly to windward was going about my same height and speed, but Greg was pointing higher with much better VMG. I reset to my lighter wind setup and, even in the choppy water, had competitive speed through the water, now coupled with unbeatable height. Such a mode is very helpful off a crowded starting line!

Quadzilla Bartlett
Downwind I started behind the youngsters, experimenting by sailing very wide angles—it didn’t really work. It’s super important in the Aero to sail in clean waves while running and reaching, and during the short legs I didn’t have enough runway to get off to the side and work clean waves before having to head closer to rhumbline (and the other boats’ wakes) to go around the leeward mark.

Liam started ahead on the long reach home, with Greg in the middle and me astern. I managed to pass Greg to leeward and close-in on, but not quite catch, the slippery Liam. Actually, I was happy to stay close, seeing as I was forced to sail right in his wake. Though short, it was a productive session.

Measurers at work
After a quick shower I went to the measurement tent to have my boat and rigging looked at, with everything passing muster. I found a prime spot for my boat close to the launch ramp (we East Coasters like short commutes!), did a bit of fine tuning to the rigging, then joined fellow Connecticut sailor Madhavan Thirumalai for some shopping and dinner before walking home. A nice, relaxing day settling-in before tomorrow's coaching session and practice race!

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

2016 Houston Open One-Design Regatta (HOOD) - RS Aero

Houston Yacht Club was the gracious host of the 2016 HOOD (Houston Open One-Design) Regatta, September 17-18 in Shoreacres, TX. 10 Aeros entered to contest 6 races in light, variable and extremely hot (90+ degree!) conditions. RS delivered the demo trailer from New England for this, the first of three Texas events on the 2016 North American Aero Tour. A number of people came over to talk about the boats and possible fleets in Corpus Christi, Austin and elsewhere--the curiosity and positive energy were great to see! We also had a few people try the boat out and come back grinning.

Mark McNamara and Rod Favela were busy selling boats and fulfilling family obligations so couldn't sail the weekend. Mark did get down to the club Sunday to watch races on his RIB, field sale inquiries and help load up the trailer.

Mike Lindstrom sailed his brand new boat in its first regatta. While still getting acquainted with his new steed, Mike already knew it was more fun to sail than a certain other boat he'd sailed for the prior 4 years. Had some good conversations with Mike, look forward to seeing him at more regattas!
Local sailor Ash Beatty missed a few races on Saturday, but schooled us all in the last race with a runaway win. An acorn who didn't fall far from the tree, his 50+ years of local restaurant knowledge led me to enjoy a delicious dinner of shrimp and grits--definitely something one doesn't see on the menu in New England!

Ryan Murphy is a recent graduate who is determined to not be one of those millennials who stops sailing after college. Sailing a 7 rig on one of the charter boats, she handled the boat like a champ, and at the trophy presentation told me she couldn't wait to turn her sailing friends onto the boat.

A hugely pleasant surprise was the appearance of the Keeldude himself, Fred Schroth. A Thursday chat on Facebook inspired Fred to drop everything and make the four hour drive from Austin to Galveston Bay to try the Aero. Conditions weren't the most conducive to enjoyment for a fellow on the other side of 200 lbs, but Fred was his usual, ebullient self, regaling us with tales of derring-do acquired over decades of sailing.

Jon Larson is a fit lad who works for KO Sailing. He quickly found pace and was duking it out for top positions in Sunday's races, only to be let down by dying breeze downwind that let others sneak ahead. In more steady, moderate conditions, this guy's a threat. A focused, no-nonsense guy who did yeoman's work loading the trailer up in 95 degree heat--thanks Jon.

Someone forgot to tell Jamie Gilman that 7 rigs are supposed to be slower than 9s. Without that knowledge, he proceeded to battle for the lead in a number of races on-the-water, winning one on handicap on his way to Third Overall. Another knowledgeable KO Sailing employee who also helped with the trailer and fielded a number of inquiries throughout the weekend.

Clearly, Hank Saurage is a fine sailor who is used to sailing in light, variable conditions. In Race 1 he snaked ahead of me upwind on a left shift and walked away to a 2+ minute margin of victory. In Race 2 I covered him the entire race before breaking off toward the finish line about a quarter of the leg from the finish. Hank worked up a bit to windward and rode a building breeze over the top for another win. I was quietly cussing a blue streak, but had to admit the guy outsailed me.

The shift Hank played marked the arrival of a more typical, Southerly breeze that built to about 7 knots. This wind was less patchy, allowing the committee to set two more races which I was fortunate to win. After such a long day, Aero sailors were happy to retreat to Houston Yacht Club's air conditioned bar for some much needed refreshment before a yummy chicken dinner!

Going into Sunday's first race Hank and I were tied on points with 2 firsts and 2 seconds. Race 5 started in a 5 knot Northerly, in which I managed to get a good start and pinch off Hank to lead at the top mark and first gate. Having learned my lesson about giving Hank *any* leverage, I stuck to him like glue, and STILL he snuck ahead on the second beat. Lucky for me, a bigger boat got between us near the top mark, allowing me to stay ahead. While Hank and I were duking it out off to the right, Jamie Gilman tacked onto starboard after the leeward mark and sailed well left before hooking into a shift that brought him right up to Hank and me by the top mark, a 20+ boatlength gain on the one leg! I managed to leg out a bit on the final run but it wasn't enough to save time on Jamie, with Hank coming in third.

As cloud cover built up over the racecourse the wind began its retreat--if the committee was to get another race off, it would be the last of the day. With no throwouts, it seemed that between Hank and me, whoever came out ahead in Race 6 would win the regatta. Game on!

Hank started a bit to windward of me at the boat and tacked off right away. I tacked a little later, then tacked too soon for the new right shift and stopped dead. Realizing the error I tried to tack again and got caught in irons, and while trying to get out of *that* my tiller extension came off. All this while Hank merrily sailed away, with Jon, Jamie and the rest in hot pursuit.

I managed to chip away and gain a bit upwind, and think Hank and Jon had to make two tacks right at the windward mark which helped. I was really focused on trying to catch Jon and Hank, who were sailing on starboard downwind, closely overlapped. As I gained they both said I was being too aggressive with my body movements--they didn't protest, but let me know their displeasure. Annoyed but acknowledging the situation, I overtrimmed my main until I was astern of them then resumed racing. Concentrating very hard (to now stay still as much as on where the wind was) I managed to pull out a bit of a lead on these two, and thinking my overtrimming earlier might not have been enough, I also did a 720 before rounding. To our far right, wiley local Ash Beatty let us contend with each other while he caught some pressure that pulled him waaaay out front!

Following Ash, I headed up around the favored left gate and headed left. Soon after rounding Jon split right as did Hank, and Ash and I tacked to cover. Jon went well right and got a big shift, Hank got into it too and took off. Ash had enough of a lead that he easily had those two, but I lost them. Then I hit the weather mark while trying to get around before a J70 and had to do a spin!

Jon and Hank were once again right next to each other on the run, this time with a J24 to leeward. I rounded the final, offset mark 10-12 boatlengths astern of them, but with a clear lane was able to sail by-the-lee directly after rounding. From there I played every little puff and shift, reaching up when possible to get closer to Hank and Jon, going by-the-lee in the really light stuff to maintain pace, and sticking the boat dead down in minute puffs. Because of the J24 to leeward, Hank and Jon didn't have those options and were stuck sailing a slow angle, allowing me to eventually pull ahead on this long run to the finish, with Ash still way out in front. Exciting stuff!

PosSail NoRigRatingHelmClubR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
145RS Aero 987.3Marc JacobiCedar Point YC CT22112210
278RS Aero 987.3Hank SauragePelican YC Louisiana11223312
31RS Aero 789.5Jamie GilmanLYC43431520
46RS Aero 987.3Jon LarsonHouston YC35345424
51111RS Aero 987.3Fred SchrothAustin YC64557734
65RS Aero 789.5Ryan MurphyTexas77664636
71625RS Aero 987.3Ash BeattyMISA56DNFDNS6140
81766RS Aero 987.3Mike LindstromConroe YC88778DNF49
91621RS Aero 987.3Mark McNamaraSeabrook YCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC66
109RS Aero 987.3Rod FavelaRush Creek YCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC66

Saturday, August 13, 2016

2016 RS Aero US National Championship - Day 1

Champagne sailing for the first day of the RS Aero US National Championship at Cascade Locks, OR. Wind started out at a moderate 10 knots and ultimately built to about 22 in the puffs, with very hot temps (high-80s/low-90s) warm, fresh water to sail in and beautiful sunsets--paradise!

4 races were sailed today, with all three rig sizes (9, 7 and 5) starting together but scored separately. Sailing a 9, I won Race 1 handily, and while not leading at every mark, did have very good running and (especially) reaching speed, which allowed me to pull ahead of Dan Falk from Seattle, WA and the rest of the fleet. Unfortunately, I'd been over early at the start, which nullified my result. Not a great way to begin a regatta!

In Race 2 I again rounded the first mark in the top 4 or so and ground my way to the top. The breeze was increasing, and the 7 (mid-size) rig sailors were coming into their own upwind, especially International Class Manager Peter Barton from the UK. It seems the 7, which has a much more flexible rig than the 9, can't point as high but sails faster forward upwind. Makes for interesting tactics, especially for 7s that are to windward of 9s off the start line and trying to hold their lanes...

By Race 3 the wind really starting to pump up. I was having a good race, planing by-the-lee into 2nd behind Dan Falk on the first run and gaining rapidly when a big gust came through. My bow dug into Dan's wake and went down down DOWN, with water almost to the daggerboard trunk before the transom flew up into the air, rudder completely out of the water and throwing me off the boat! It took a while to get the boat back upright and moving again, but after a solid upwind leg I turned on the jets downwind and zoomed up into 4th overall and second 9 rig. Dan Falk sailed fast and steady for second overall (to Barton) and the 9-rig win.

Race 4. Ah, Race 4... Decent breeze again, with Falk and Barton getting off the line well and ahead of me at the top mark. Again I was fast downwind, passing Barton and pulling within a boatlength of Falk by the leeward gate. Falk headed up around the unfavored starboard gate mark on port tack and I gybed around the port mark. My adrenaline was really pumping and I rolled the boat too hard, which caused the boat to flip over! With the current going upwind, it was a major scramble to get the boat upright and borne off before hitting the mark, but I was *just* able to do it. Of course, two or three boats managed to pass while I righted the ship, so David Brink and another boat were ahead on the long starboard tack to the Oregon shore. Managed to squeeze off Brink and pull a little bow-forward of the other boat, then we tacked over onto port at or very-near the layline. I managed to pull ahead of the other boat by the weather mark, with Falk, Jay Renahan and Barton 1-2-3 well ahead.

Falk had another super run and pulled out to a huge lead, with Renahan 2nd. Carlos Abisambra from Seattle and I managed to leap ahead of Barton by the bottom of the run, but once again I wiped out at the leeward gate! Carlos capsized trying to avoid me, allowing Barton to snake past us both. Carlos and I got our boats up quickly, but in the breezy conditions Barton and Renahan had sped off. I managed to round the final leeward mark within a boatlength of Barton and 7 lengths of Renahan after the two reaching legs, but Barton took a short hitch onto starboard soon after rounding the leeward mark, allowing him to get a bit of the left shift off the shore and an almost direct line to the favored committee boat side of the finish line on port to hold me off and close within a boatlength of Renahan.

So. 4 races done, 4 more schedule for tomorrow. With the throwout that will come after Race 5, I am one point behind Falk in the 9 class--certainly within striking distance. Need to sail a bit more conservatively, avoid the big mistakes and let my reaching speed do the talking. Let's see how prophetic that last sentence is tomorrow!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

2016 RS Aero Atlantic Coast Championship

The inaugural RS Aero Atlantic Coast Championship (held in conjunction with the Newport Regatta, Newport RI) was a tremendously successful 3-day event, with 17 boats representing 7 states!

A clinic on Friday gave attendees a chance to get to know each other, share rigging/sailing tips, and dust off the cobwebs with practice starts and even a few practice races. This was followed by lunch (generously provided by RS Sailing's Todd Riccardi) then the Speed Run, for which we had a nice (if not record-enabling) 12-18 knots of wind. Max 10-second average was recorded by me in a 7 rig (13.5 knots, 14.2 peak), nearly 1/2 knot faster than my earlier run in the bigger 9 rig. Video of Judith Krimski & me: https://www.facebook.com/judith.krimski/videos/10209718704384017/
Sailing World Editor Dave Reed tearing it up: https://www.facebook.com/todd.riccardi/videos/10100504224552101/

If only we had that much breeze for the actual racing! Our circle was set in the lee of Goat Island, making for shifty, variable 5-10 knot wind and lots of tidal influence to challenge the fleet. We had five "9" rigs racing, which proved very fast in the light and variable conditions; most comments here will relate to my interactions with them.

Peter Shope (2015 Laser Grand Master World Champion), Christine Neville (2016 US Laser Olympic Aspirant) and Scott Pakenham proved to be quick studies, having no trouble beating yours truly to the first mark in most races. Christine and Peter generally had fine starts, while Scott played the shifts beautifully. I was a bit lax at the starts (those who read this blog can recognize the trend) and frequently had trouble going the way I wanted or taking full advantage of shifts as a result.

The Aero's incredible pointing ability, acceleration and speed when cracked off offers many tactical options not available on other boats. Shope loves to foot upwind, and in an oscillating breeze that was devastatingly fast. I had success at times using the Aero's high mode to hold lanes off the start and to stay in bands of pressure longer. 

There was plenty of experimentation going on downwind, with Christine most willing to sail higher angles in search of speed. The wind wasn't quite strong enough to plane while broad reaching, meaning those who stayed in pressure and pointed the boat more to the mark saw bigger gains. Peter was especially quick, gybing frequently and decisively going for bands of pressure and fast angles. I think many people gybed too soon after rounding the weather mark, keeping them in the lee of buildings to windward and boats on the starboard tack layline. I tried to soak down on starboard for a few lengths before gybing, and that generally went well.

Being pushed by such excellent sailors really helped me figure out some things. My big takeaway from Saturday was to sail with much less vang than I had in the past, both upwind and down. Of course, upwind in breeze some got dialed on, but the boat was just plain faster sailing with it a bit eased.

Later in the day the tide shifted, making the right side a bit less favored than it had been earlier. In one race this allowed me to claw back to 2nd from 5th or 6th at the first leeward mark. It definitely was a day to be decisive and patient, waiting for pressure and a shift before tacking!

It was also a long day, with 6 races being run by the RC and little time to regroup in between. Going into Sunday I led with 4 firsts and 2 seconds (6 points with throwout), Shope was in 2nd with 8, steady-as-she-goes Scott had 16 in 3rd with Christine only one point back. With an unlimited number of races to go and a second throwout looming at 12, it was anyone's regatta!

Sunday dawned a bit gloomy, with the wind more left than the previous day and definitely lighter. The course was now parallel with Goat Island, and there seemed to be a bit more pressure on the left upwind, especially in the earlier races.

Christine was on FIRE, having beautiful starts and fine boatspeed to lead at every mark in every race, sometimes by huge margins! Shope was OCS in Race 5 but rebounded annoyingly well to finish right behind me in 3rd. We had some very close racing, and from what I could see, the 7 rigs were TIGHT, often having 4 or 5 boats overlapped at the finish of a 30 minute race!

Christine's perfect Sunday scorecard allowed her to leapfrog Scott into 3rd, while I held onto 1st, 3 points clear of Peter. In the 7 rigs, Chuck Allen (collegiate all-American and North Sails rep) prevailed over Dave Reed and class stalwart Doug DuBois, who flew out from Park City UT to attend the event. Other notable travelers included Tony Corkell from Raleigh NC, Gregory Popp from Ormond Beach FL and Simeon Thomas from Colorado.

More info about the regatta and the boat on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/groups/rsaeroclassnorthamerica/)
Class website: http://www.rsaerosailing.org