Monday, 17 September 2007

The Good with The Bad

photo coutesy New York Yacht Club
Just to prove I wasn't pulling any legs when I'd posted that it was windy on Saturday. This boat is being steered by a former college All American, the blue sail is being trimmed by a former college All American (my brother), and the tactician/sailing master is a multiple world champion and Olympic silver medallist. These guys are no joke and they got knocked the f out. Boat #4217 is the boat on which I sailed. This was a good race for us, we did well not to lose it.

Sunday morning was a perfect morning, except that after going out way too hard on Saturday night I had a massive hangover and it was butt cold. Once again we sailed inside the Bay, north of the bridge. It was a smart decision by the race commitee, as the inside usually holds breeze way better than the outside after a cold front comes through. Windspeed was around 15 for our first start.

Before the start, I was pretty convinced that we wanted to go left up the first leg. Then I got really convinced that the right would be better. We had an okay but not great start and it was way easier for us to get left. On puffy and shifty days like this inside the bay, typically once you move toward one side or the other, it is better to stick to that plan all the way. Big holes in the wind develop in the middle of the course, and you can really get stuck. We stuck to our guns on the left and wound up getting to the top mark 5th, right in the thick of it.

Down the run, we discovered that we had a speed issue. A pretty bad one. We lost three boats just by them going faster than us, which is excruciating and miserable. It also removes options for you to make good plays, so it was no surprise when we found ourselves kind of in the soup on the second beat. Fortunately, people lost faith in the left yet we did not, and we gained all the way back to 5th or 6th (it was close and I can't remembe that well) by the top mark, but then we had speed issues on the run once again and droped back to 9th. It sucks when you get to the top pack and can't stay there.

The second race got off to our best start, but as I'd predicted to the crew before the race, it was sure to get very weird as the front passed and the wind died. In fact, I'd warned the team that I was going to be a stress biscuit the whole race and please don't talk to me unless I ask for something. True to plan, it good bad, it got good, it got great and it got miserable. At the top mark, as my buddy Tim likes to say, we were on the green in regulation, rounding 5th. Our downhill speed deficiencies cost us badly on this time, removing our options so badly that we were unable to really make any moves and got passed by nearly 10 boats. Holy S, Batman, that sucked. Up the beat, we passed a couple back, and then had them all pass us back on the downwind run to the finish. So we ended up the regatta with a bit of a shocker of a finish but all told, it was okay. A bit draining, mentally, but fun all told.

The boat is racing again over the next several weeks and I've been asked to do it all but after going full stop for like a month with the Europe trip and now this, I think I need a weekend off. Plus I miss my bike and it misses me.

Next up, a discussion of why people who don't deserve it are going to get bailed out of bad decisions and risky behavior because of the electoral cycle.

No comments: