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Blake 3 and Hertel & Brown 1 Results & Recaps

Posted by AJ Miceli on July 13, 2009

Ask me how much I like extremely light air (2-4 knots) windward-leeward JAM races in the lake with current and chop!  These recaps will be brief.  Our valiant crew did everything they could in these conditions.  It wasn’t their fault…  Crew:  Judy, Steve, Andy, Kim

Race 1 Results:  10th of 10 (DFL)

The start was in a hole, and we had a terrible start.  Steve thinks we maybe finally crossed the line 4 minutes after the gun.  We made up some time on the first leg and then lost it all (and more) when we had trouble rounding the first mark.  It was in another hole with shifty winds — shades of race 1 of the Interclub.  Then it was a long, slow tack downwind in no wind without a spinnaker.  Then a reasonably slow upwind leg.  And the finish was in a hole.   We really were DFL in the whole fleet, not just the C fleet.

Race 2 Results:  7th of 10

We got a little better start this time but were still at the back of the fleet.  We tacked over and took the right side of the course — so the left side was favored this time.  We got around the windward mark with a little less trouble this time, but still near the back of the fleet.  Most boats tacked downwind like we did, so we didn’t give up as much this time, and we had a reasonable upwind leg, but overall it was just not enough.  We beat some boats this time, but it’s nothing to write home about.

Posted in Crew News and Activities, Lake Erie Sailing, Race Recaps, Racing Rules of Sailing, Results, Sailboat Racing, Yacht Racing | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Hilbrich Electric Race 1 Results and Recap

Posted by AJ Miceli on June 11, 2009

Results:  11th

Recap: Ask me how much I like long windward-leeward JAM races in light to dying air.  The wind at the start was E @ 9kts, predicted to die by 8PM.  The course was R-14 and back to M for the finish (3.86 nm).   11 boats in our fleet on the line.  We had a bad start in bad air near the back of the fleet.  The only good thing about that is that you get to tack away to port and clear your air right away, so we did.  We sailed that tack in toward shore and then tacked over in clear air for the long starboard tack.  That actually helped — we were lifted on that tack.  When we rejoined the fleet we had moved into 4th place or so.  We always gauge by where we end up in relation to Serendipity.  When we crossed tacks with Serendipity about 2/3 of the way up the course we felt pretty good about the time we had made up.

Then things went wrong.   The wind dropped precipitously and our boat speed went from 3’s and 4’s to 1’s and 2’s.   A couple crew members think we picked up some seaweed (there were some patches of seaweed left from the afternoon, and our manual speedo stopped reading numbers and went to — while the GPS showed 1.8 knots over ground).  Still we seemed much slower than others, and the others caught up and passed us.  To be honest, I don’t know if it was seaweed, or just that their 155’s were a bigger help in 2-3 knots of air.  We tacked over to port with about a tenth of a mile to go to the mark, and the wind came back up (to 5’s and 6’s) and backed a little which actually lifted us to the port layline sailing back in the 3’s and 4’s.  By then were back to the bottom third in rank.  We came together at the mark on port with Rakish and Serendipity on starboard.  Rakish was ahead and we were able to tack onto starboard about a boat-length and a half in front of Serendipity.  They probably weren’t happy about that, but I’m pretty sure we didn’t foul them (even under the new rule 18.3 “Tacking When Approaching A Mark”).

After rounding the wind went light again.   All the other boats went wing-n-wing and sailed away from us.  We did what we could, sailing the angles in 2-3 knots of wind.  We struggled for about 20 minutes and then the breeze started freshening.   We started sailing faster on port gybe away from the mark.   A minute or so after we gybed to starboard we found ourselves on a beam reach with the wind from the north.  The boats ahead of also dropped their wing-n-wing and were reaching.  The wind built back to about 8, but by then it was too late for us.  Even boats that we normally beat easily like Endurance were ahead of us reaching well.  We finished last in the fleet.  DFL.

On the way back to the marina the air was very chilly, but the sunset was beautiful.

Thanks to our crew:  Judy, Andy, Steve and Ken.

We’ll be short-handed on Sunday for two JAM races.  See you then.

Posted in Crew News and Activities, Lake Erie Sailing, Race Recaps, Racing Rules of Sailing, Results, sailboat race, Yacht Racing | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Brier Patch JAM #3 Recap

Posted by AJ Miceli on May 28, 2009

The weather was the story of the first part of the race.  A warm front was coming through and a patch of rain and thunderstorms was headed for Erie.  The race committee watched the radar and held the start of the race until it was clear that the main cell was passing us.  We watched the radar on Steve’s iPhone.  As it happened, the roughest weather went both north and south of us, and the bay was unscathed, except for a little rain.

The course was a triangle:  S-W-Finish.  The wind at the start was WSW @ 8-10 kts, so we started on a starboard broad reach.  When we were clear of the fleet we flipped to port and sailed for the middle of the bay.  We were in the middle with Entson.   Most of the boats stayed on the rhumb line — some went wing-n-wing.   On that leg we also had a tangle with Foxy Lady (J-24).  As we approached them on port, they walked their sails over to starboard, but their bow was already overlapped with us, and we didn’t really have time to get out of there in light air.  The bow kept coming, and I had to push off their bow pulpit right before they were going to hit us.  Their tactic was a small boat racing tactic that doesn’t work as well with keel boats.  As the leg progressed, the wind clocked to W then WNW.  That allowed everyone on port to sail almost straight for the mark.  We gybed and came down to meet the fleet.  When we reconnected with the fleet and flipped back to port,  Serendipity, Entson and Dawn Treader were ahead of us and we were about a boat length ahead of most the other boats.  We’ll count that as a win, considering how challenging it is for us to sail this boat downwind.

After rounding we ended up beating to windward toward W.  We chose to stay on the right.  Several other boats rounded and sailed for the left.  About halfway up the leg the wind backed to the west and allowed almost everyone to sail a direct course to the mark, no matter where you were on the course.   Serendipity, Entson and Dawn Treader stretched out before and after that mark.  We gave Keya room at the mark and they gybed away at the mark.  We rounded next and stayed on port.  Rakish rounded right behind us.

The final leg started as a beat to the finish due to the windshift.  Keya took the south route, we took the north route then sailed for the middle.  On that leg we stretched out a little on Rakish, and we traded tacks with Foxy Lady again.  The wind started dying and kept clocking.  About halfway to the finish we sensed another big windshift and flipped to port as the wind went behind us.  Then the wind dropped to 1-2 knots.  The course turned into a parking lot for a while.  Serendipity finished (perhaps a half hour ahead of us).  Dawn Treader and Entson were in sight of the line, but took a long time to finish.  The rest of us were still about a half-mile from the finish.  We did everything we could to keep the boat moving.  At one point the GPS said we were .41 nm from the finish and the time-to-go was 4o minutes!  We heard the sunset cannon go off at the yacht club.  After that the wind started filling in from the back.   The boats in back started catching up with us.  We moved all the weight forward, and I stayed with the tiller and the mainsheet.  We were even with Keya (about 15 boat lengths to the left of us) and Silver Wheel had come up right behind us (about a half a boat length behind us).  As the wind built slowly we held off Silver Wheel and we shot the line at the end to just nose out Keya.  We still owed Keya a couple seconds per mile, but we’ll take the moral victory.  We were fourth over the line in our fleet.

Final Result:  5th (Serendipity finished a half hour ahead of us, Dawn Treader and Entson finished about 10 minutes ahead, and Keya corrected over us by a few seconds).

Thanks to our fine light air crew:  Andy, Steve and Judy.

See you Sunday for two spinnaker races in the bay!

Posted in Crew News and Activities, Hunter 27X, Race Recaps, Racing Rules of Sailing, Results | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

50 Days to Splash

Posted by AJ Miceli on March 15, 2009

Ok — I admit that I’m getting antsy to sail again.  As of today, we’re only 50 days away from Splash.

Our off-season continues.  Two weeks ago I sent a copy of a Sailing World article to the crew about asymmetrical sail douses.  Last week Ben drew up a useful graphic to help us decide quickly which drop to use under various conditions.  I sent that out to the crew too.

This coming Saturday I’ll be attending the full-day North U. seminar on the Racing Rules of Sailing.  See you there.

Posted in Crew News and Activities, Hunter 27X, Off-season, Racing Rules of Sailing, Sailboat Racing, Yacht Racing | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

2009 Racing Rules of Sailing

Posted by AJ Miceli on January 25, 2009

If you look over to the right you’ll see that I’ve added a new link to a blog about the changes to the Racing Rules of Sailing.  The blog appears to be very active so you might check it regularly.

Posted in Lake Erie Sailing, Racing Rules of Sailing, Sailboat Racing, Yacht Racing | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

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