PRSA sailors, this is the weekend to bring your friends out sailing and show them how much fun racing can be. Our regular spring racing series is suspended this week in order to hold our rookie regatta. Bring new friends out or let your crew take the helm. As always there will be an apres-sail pot-luck picnic at the grill. See you Sunday!
SIs are here
Results: Unfortunately, the wind was gusty. Only two or three boats wanted to try racing in those conditions and one of them capsized. So PRO Kyra Tallon cancelled the racing.
Aaron Boesenecker ran the RC. It started off light and then died completely. Many of us rafted up and waited for the RC to cancel racing for the day. But, no…. The wind filled in beautifully from the south.
We got more practice in light air sailing which seems to require 1) patience and 2) and zen with the wind and current. The wind was loosely speaking from the northeast and after dying it usually, but not always, came back from the east. In the Lightning class, Bob Astrove showed off how good he is in these light conditions.
Bob Astrove ran the RC. He commented: “As you can see we did not have a lot of boats, but a beautiful day. 5 to 10 from the south.”
Please join us this Wednesday evening, April 5th, to hear NOAA meteorologist Bryan Jackson discuss how NOAA develops marine weather forecasts, and how you can best access this information.
We will be meeting at Heavy Seas Alehouse in Arlington, 1501 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA. Come straight back to the party room.
Socializing starts at 6:00 pm, Seminar begins at 7:00 pm.
We hope to see you there!!
Sunday March 19, 2017. Good weather for the last day of frostbiting. It was sunny but cool with winds in the 10-15 mph range from the northwest. We got in 5 races, all olympic course, and I did well in all but the last one.
My general start tactic on a heavier wind day is what I think of as a drift start. I hang out past the committee boat on the right side of the course. With about 30 second to go I power up and head for somewhere on the line. When a bunch of boats bunch up at the committee boat there is enough wind to get to leeward of them and make it to the line on time. If the boat end folks are early they will head down the line and leave a nice window. This worked well today on most races and I was competitive to the windward mark.
On the course I used my normal heavy wind tactics namely, tight vang, medium outhaul and Cunningham, then lots of hiking. I ease my outhaul 100% at the windward mark to give more power downwind and I ease the vang to about 50%. The eased vang I find (and have heard) helps to bear away. The triangle legs of the olympic were great and I think I reached a plane on most downwind legs. This is super fun and I was able to make up some ground if I caught a puff.
I did have issues keeping my mainsheet running clean. I had a few issues on the course because of this. Twice I had the sheet wrapped around a foot causing me to tack rather than duck a starboard boat. I also had a serious knot at one of the windward roundings that I had to undo before I could bear away. Mainsheet discipline will be something for me to work on for windier days. Still a fun last day, I’m looking forward to Cap City next week!
2016_2017 PRSA Laser Frostbite Series #16
Sunday turned out to be one of the first actual frostbite days this season. The breeze was predicted to be from the west at 10-16 with a high of 42. It was pretty close to that. The breeze was super shifty and puffy. Rarely do you see it on the river come from every direction. During the races the breeze was mostly swinging between the north and south. Big thanks to race committee for running the races, especially to James Jacob for bringing is own boat down and giving us a mark boat to try and fix the course each race.
As far as the racing, I was surprised that I got third. The scores were all over the place. Winning the start did not guarantee a good race with how shifty it was. We ran 3 W1, 1 W2 and 2 olympics. We had some nice breeze and some lulls. After a lull, typically one of the sides would pay off. During the nice breeze on the olympics, we got to do some fun planing as well as between races. We were able to see a few capsizes as well (including my own haha).
A quick summary on the season this far. We currently have 16 people qualifying. There are a couple of battles going on in the scores. Will Summers and I are duking it out for 2nd place. Jim Klein and Claus are battling for 6th. And Kat and Francisco are tied with Kat winning the tie breaker. We have just one more weekend to mix it up a little more. Hope to see everyone out next weekend!
2016_2017 PRSA Laser Frostbite Series #15
The wind prediction the night before called for 0 wind gusting to 1 mph. The morning of this looked to be a very accurate prediction. We talked a bit about should we go out or shouldn’t we, who needs more races to qualify (I do), and other light wind things. We were leaning towards heading home when Will as RC says “we’ll just race in the cove!”
The first race in the cove was a bit more off the docks than in the cover proper but the course was not terrible. I got exactly the start I wanted, at the pin end trying to port tack the fleet. It was 0% successful. Not only did I not beat anyone off the line but everyone passed in front of me without my needing to duck. The once around was a bit slow and very little tacking was required but it worked. I finished like I started but all sailing is fun. Toward the end the wind looked better so we picked up and headed into the river.
In the river the wind was a flunky as you would expect for a light-wind-from-the-west kind of day. I have one rule I follow for light wind starts which is don’t get too far from the line. This worked reasonably well and I managed to stay closer to the front of the fleet. Light wind is not my favorite and I tend not to do so well. I’m attributing getting 3rd place on luck, which I will of course gladly take.
My favorite part about this cold and still day, aside from the racing, was sitting between the races. If you maneuver your boat so you are in the sun you can let the sun heat you up and get much warmer, almost toasty. It was slightly silly and pleasant. Definitely a nice day to be out on the river.
2016_2017 PRSA Laser Frostbite Series #14
Last Sunday was a replay of the previous weekend. The parking lot banter was that I would just repost previous week’s write-up. Lots o’ sun, shifty winds, blah, blah, blah. Déjà vu all over again. But you couldn’t just sit on deck with an umbrella drink if you wanted to keep the boat moving and stay out of the water. Looking upwind to find the next line of wind and getting to it and/or being ready for it was a big part of the game.
I found myself continuously adjusting the shape and trim of the sail, both up and downwind, primarily using the vang, cunningham and sheet. I find it easier to trim the MK2 main because it simply looks more like a modern cloth sail when trimmed well. Working with the vang and the cunningham to create a nice foil shape was a constant challenge in the 1-15 knot wind we were dealing with Sunday. Downwind I relied on my masthead wind indicator to pick up the 45 degree shifts. Upwind I used the indicator in the lulls and the luff of the sail to adjust to the changing apparent wind.
Since the tide was really low we had to sail to weather with our boards up a few inches. There may have been some downwind capsizes caused by the board grounding and tripping over the centerboard. But at least it’s easy to right a boat that’s capsized in 3 feet of water.
It’s hard to believe that our Capital City regatta is only four weekends away on 3/25-26.
2016_2017 PRSA Laser Frostbite Series #13