16 September 2007

It started cold and windy

Well, at least it started cold....

The Sheldon Clark Regatta was a fitting exercise in frustration for the last race of the season. We had lovely wind as we headed out. Leaves on trees were flapping, the flags on the masts were snapping, and it was all of 46 degrees F. As we motored out, we could enjoy the wave action on the boat. Nice big rollers, more smallish ocean swells, than lake waves. Fun to sail up and down, not just left and right.

Well, we got the sails raised, and that pretty much, like for the rest of the season, shut the wind off. We had a great start, even as the wind was working it's way down to single digits. We have raced in slow wind all year, and are getting better and better. We sail quite well down to 6 kts or so, when earlier this year, anything below 10 was the death of us racing. But, sure enough, the wind ran out.

Now, this is NOT terrible. The R/C could shorten the course (easily enough,) or let us bob around trying to finish 4 legs, when it took us 2 hours to finish the 1st leg. And what a leg! Started upwind, started clocking around (Don and Bill read it perfect, and positioned us well on the racecourse,) then it died the first time. A little becalmed, time for a sail change. Wind moving, but from the other side; sail change again, no wait! Different sail change, let's put up the 'chute! Bobbed around with that for a bit, then dropped it, loaded up the code 1, and made it around the mark!

Excellent work so far. Rounded in second place, might be able to correct to first, and away we go! Bang! Abandon Race!

Yup, the R/C decided to abandon the race, with some boats up starting leg 4, some on the 3rd leg, some of us finally around on the 2nd leg. What a pain. Fitting end to the season, though.

We had a great time with "Turning Point on Maskwa Day." Nicole, Darcy, and Bill joined us for the last (damn cold) race of the season. Nicole and Darcy did wonders making us go fast with excellent tacks, and Bill stood behind Don with a batten and the handheld compass finding us a course to go even faster. Too bad it was all ruined by the R/C, but that is just how it goes.

More sailing to come... no more races, but we will be doing some fun sailing, and Maskwa will be sailed (hopefully) up to Larson's Saturday, Oct 20th.

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