Friday, September 7, 2018

2018 RS Aero World Championship - Days 5 & 6

Sorry for the delay in wrapping this regatta up.

DAY 5
Regatta rituals are, for me at least, very important. Day 5 started on an off note when I had no more bananas; as a result, my morning smoothie consisted of kale, carrot and walnuts only. Even for me, it was tough to choke down...

I left the dock late and didn't have much time to do pre-race homework on the racecourse. My energy level was off and I just didn't feel settled in the boat. This was going to be a challenging day.

Stronger wind overall, along with some very nasty chop. Peter Barton was really motoring upwind, sailing low and fast, and pulled out to a significant lead in the first race. Midway through I found myself panicking a bit, with thoughts like "oh no, there goes my perfect scorecard" running through my head.

Then I reminded myself that what ultimately mattered was the overall regatta result, and there was no sense risking a poor finish by sailing a flyer when 2nd would be more than good enough. I continued to have good pace running, and gained several boatlengths to surf into an inside overlap at the very last mark. Peter had a better gybe though, and that was it.
 
Peter had more decisive victories in the remaining two races, including a runaway in the final. I managed to pull down two more 2nds. With only two races scheduled for the final day, I had mathematically cemented First Overall for my second consecutive RS Aero 9 World Championship win!

DAY 6

The forecast for the final day was quite ominous, with near-gale conditions anticipated in the late morning/early afternoon. The night before I had a dream about going out and getting conked in the head by the boom. That's never happened to me in an Aero (the boom is nice and high), but the premonition was very strong. That, and my desire to find my dolly in the stack of 206(!) made me decide to sit out racing.

Turns out the wind was quite sailable, at least early, but then filled to pucker-inducing strength toward the end of the first race. Barton added to his string of 1sts, sewing up Second Overall, while George Cousins locked down Third Overall.


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