Come one and come all — try out your speed and tactics against other boats and other classes in a distance race on the river on Sunday, June 18. We will use government marks and the course will be determined by weather conditions on Sunday. The NOR, Sailing Instructions, and Course Diagrams are all posted below. Scoring will be done using the Portsmouth Yardstick system. Questions should be directed to the PRO for the Distance Race, John Van Voorhis.
What a beautiful day for racing!
The winds were from the south between 10 and 15 mph. They oscillated between 180 and 200. Later in the day, they’d occasionally drop down below 10 but then new breeze would roll up the river.
There were 8 Lightnings on the line. Aaron and I had very close racing with us edging him out by a point at the end of the day. On this type of day with moderate & steady breeze and flat water all the boats are very similar in speed. It is very hard to pass and so the start is more important than usual.
Our strategy was to start near the boat so that we’d have the freedom to tack away. The one time we started down the line, we had a very good start but not good enough to cross the fleet on port. Will & Aaron had us pinned. We eventually tacked and swerved hard to duck Will but Aaron had already tacked and led the pack to the windward mark. Nothing we did would reel him in.
After rounding the leeward mark, if we were leading the strategy for staying in the lead was to sail on port all the way to the airport. Simple. (The airport is generally the better side to be on, maybe because of less chop or maybe because the land funnels the wind a bit there. Don’t really know why.) If we were not the lead boat, we had to fight to keep from sailing into the bad air of the lead boat and look for a small header or better breeze on the left before tacking. Then we had to be on the lookout for another header to get back toward the airport. Not so simple but we made it work once.
Downwind we worked hard to get inside rights at the mark. Usually this meant sailing as deep as possible without sailing by the lee. If the spinnaker trimmer is curling the luff, I’m by the lee if the spinnaker clew is to windward of the forestay. For speed downwind, we tried to keep our weight forward to keep the water flowing smoothly off our transom, healed slightly to windward to give the spinnaker as much air as possible, and the board almost all the way up into the trunk to give the boat some leeward helm. But none of that beats getting a good puff!
Fun close racing!
Thanks to Jeff Neurator, Heather Howard, Chris Porter, and Yates for giving us 4 great races. Heather also took some great pics from the signal boat (thanks Heather!). And thanks to Tom Hutton for getting the scores calculated not just for today but for the whole Spring Series.
The NOR for the PRSA Spring Regatta (May 27-28) has been posted and registration is now open. Visit the regatta website and register by May 21 to take advantage of the early registration discount. Once you’ve registered, help us spread the word about the regatta!
We have partnered with DC Sail once again to organize a spectator cruise aboard the American Spirit on Saturday of the Spring Regatta. Spectator cruise tickets are $20/person (or $25 for a combined cruise and Saturday dinner ticket). Tickets can be purchased via the regatta website. We have also posted complete details on the cruise in the “race documents” area on the regatta website.
We had over 50 people attend the 2016 PRSA Annual General Meeting and Awards Ceremony, making it one of the best attended in recent years! I want to extend a very special thank you to Melissa Morgan and Heather Howard for all of their work in planning the AGM, organizing the food and drink, decorating the room, and generally ensuring good cheer such that a great time was had by all.
The PRSA Executive Committee was pleased to highlight our growth over the year, including a 5th consecutive year of membership growth and the highest total membership level (118 members) that we have seen since 2005! We were also pleased to recognize Aaron Boesenecker, Frank Gallagher, and Will Phillippe with PRSA perpetual awards awards. You can keep reading for additional details and links to the relevant documents, including the AGM Agenda, the list of PRSA Spring and Fall Series winners, details on the perpetual award winners, and your 2017 PRSA Executive Committee.
At the AGM each officer from the PRSA Executive Committee provided an update on the state of the association. The membership approved the creation of a committee to review the PRSA Constitution and bring a revised Constitution to the membership for approval at the 2017 AGM. We also celebrated the PRSA Spring Series and Fall Series winners in each class and awarded the PRSA Perpetual Awards to members who have contributed outstanding Service over the year. Finally, we approved a new PRSA Executive Committee for 2016.
PRSA Perpetual Award Winners
- Founder’s Trophy (for outstanding service to PRSA and for the general promotion of PRSA): Aaron Boesenecker
- Fleet Captain’s Award (recognizing outstanding race committee service): Frank Gallagher, for service at the 2016 PRSA President’s Cup
- Yates Dowell III Award (for exceptional administrative service to PRSA): Will Phillippe, for extensive and outstanding work maintaining and improving PRSA Equipment.
2017 PRSA Executive Committee
- Commodore: Kyra Tallon (congratulations Kyra!)
- Vice Commodore: Will Phillippe
- Rear Commodore: Nabeel Alsalam
- Treasurer: Yates Dowell
- Secretary: Nich Allen
- Also assisting the PRSA Executive Committee in 2016:
- PRSA Scorer: Farley Will
- Website Support: Stew Harris
- Committee for Social Activities & Outreach: Heather Howard, Lisa-Marie Lane, Melissa Morgan
- Committee for Sustainability: Laura Lake
- Committee to Review Governing Documents: Jeff Neurauter (and others TBD)
Finally a big thank you to our officers who served PRSA in 2016. Here’s looking forward to an excellent 2017!
Now is the time to pay your PRSA dues for 2017! The 2017 membership year starts on December 1, and you have until January 15, 2017 to pay your dues without late fee. Members paying on or after January 15, 2017, will be assessed a late fee of $25. After you fill out the membership form you will be offered the option of paying via PayPal or sending a check to our PRSA Treasurer.
Please remember that having our association members pay dues up front each year is of immense help to all of our PRSA volunteers. We can better allocate expenditures over the year, organize RC requirements, set up scoring systems in advance, and more. Your PRSA dues support boat and equipment maintenance, insurance, slip fees, and everything else that goes into allowing us to race each weekend. Of course, skippers must be paid PRSA members in order to qualify for the Laser Frostbite Series and the Spring and Fall racing series, and to be eligible to vote at the PRSA AGM.
As you pay your dues I would also encourage you to support the PRSA Commodore’s Club (a donation can be added to your 2017 membership payment). Whether big or small, any additional donation is a great help as we work on maintaining our equipment and conducting safe and fun racing each year. Many thanks, as well, to all of those who contributed to the PRSA Commodore’s Club in 2016: http://www.potomacriversailing.org/applications/membership/CommodoreClub.php.
I’m already looking forward to the 2017 sailing season, and I hope that you are as well!
We had a great day for racing this past Sunday! Six Lightnings, two Bucs, two Albacores, and an I-20 came out to play on a sunny day that featured some great, albeit shifty, breeze. PRO Farley Will and his crew did a great job managing a “wacky west wind” in setting a course that gave us a mix of O2, T2, T3, and O3 courses. The wind reports from National Airport show a breeze of 12-15 throughout the afternoon with the occasional gust in the 20s.
On board Beedobeat I was shorthanded, sailing with Piercarlo but no third. Given some of the tight reach angles (and a short-ish downwind leg due to the wind direction) we didn’t fly the spinnaker at all, but we were still right in the mix with the rest of the Lightnings, winning a few races and enjoying some great planing rides on the reach legs under jib and main alone (though we did have to work our butts off to keep the boat flat going upwind in some of te puffs!). Some of the Lightnings and Bucs did get their spins up, which mattered more on the Olympic courses with true downwind legs, I think. It wasn’t a guarantee, though, as I saw some boats struggle with controlling spinnakers in the puffs and shifts. The wind was not that crazy, though, and after 5 great races we headed back to shore for a BBQ under a wonderfully sunny (and warm!) fall sky.
Scores will be posted soon, and I think we will also have some great photos taken from the RC boats to post as well. Stay tuned!
The 2016 PRSA Annual General Meeting and Awards Banquet will be held on Saturday, November 19, 6-9 pm, in the community room at Marina Towers in Alexandria, VA. Dinner & drinks will cost $25/person / $10/person for those under 21 (pay at the door with check or cash). This is always a great chance to see everybody and reminisce about another year of great sailing, so I hope to see you there! Please sign up here as soon as possible so that our volunteers can plan for the appropriate amount of food and drink.
Here is the basic schedule of events:
- 6:00 Appetizers & Drinks
- 6:30 Dinner
- 7:30 Business Meeting & Awards
- 7:30-8:00 Officer Reports
- 8:00-8:30 Open discussion
- 8:30-8:45 PRSA Spring & Fall Series Awards
- 8:45-8:55 PRSA Perpetual Awards
- 8:55-9:00 Discussion & approval of 2017 PRSA Executive Committee
- 9:00 Adjourn & Cleanup
On October 16 PRSA will host the 3rd Annual PRSA Dinghy Open Regatta. This is your chance to compete against all dinghy classes in a series of “boat-on-boat” races, so don’t miss out!
Sailboats of any class 20’ and under are invited to participate. Sailboats may be organized and compete in three divisions – Spinnaker Division, Non-spinnaker Division and Multi-hull Division. Based on the number of boats present at the Skipper’s Meeting, Divisions may be combined. All races will be scored according to the Portsmouth Yardstick system.
The NOR and Sailing Instructions are posted below. Questions should be directed to the Aaron at email@example.com.
With over 50 boats, over 125 sailors, and 2 days of great racing on both courses the 2016 President’s Cup Regatta was a fantastic success. Results are posted here and here are the links to the amazing photos that Lindsay Bach took on both days:
- Day 1 Photos: https://goo.gl/photos/6E48cbSTeaEc5Mgu9
- Day 2 Photos: https://goo.gl/photos/TGWW5JwXn9acLxQ66
A beautiful S/SW breeze both days meant that most classes got 7 races over the weekend and the Laser class ended up completing 12 races! A huge thank you to all who helped to make the 2016 regatta such a great success, including PRO Frank Gallagher and his RC crew, Heather Howard and Melissa Morgan for organizing a great BBQ, Nabeel Alsalam for scoring, Lindsay Bach for taking photos while on the RC, Lisa-Marie Lane for managing merchandise sales and check-in, DC Sail for their partnership in organizing the spectator cruise aboard the American Spirit, and all the other individuals who pitched in along the way. Dan Dunham also did a great job in getting us some local press coverage on the regatta!
Here is a writeup from Nabeel, on RC, about the 2nd PRSA Distance Race, held on Sunday, August 21:
The sky was partly cloudy and the breeze was a gorgeous 13 mph or so from the south. The weather reports predicted a storm from coming through at about 2 or 3 pm, so we started the races a bit early (11:11 am) and chose a course of a moderate length.
Four boats competed in the re-instituted distance race. They started off of the green can (G7A) east and south of the marina and raced around red nun just north of the bridge (N2), back up to the bifurcation buoy that marks where the channel splits between the Anacostia and the Potomac and back to the start — about 9 nautical miles.
The elapsed times were:
- Barney Harris and Lars Rathjen (Albacore) 1:29:44
- Nic Bogren and Gabriela (Buccaneer) 1:30:13
- Jeff Neurauter and nephew (Buccaneer) 1:32:02
- Geoff Fuller and … sorry, I didn’t get their names (Lightning): 1:38:05
Chris Porter was out on his Buccaneer but did not race because he did not have a crew. John Ely was out on his Hobie-16 but did not race because his old boat has a bent mast and can’t point. A sailor on a Laser (178xxx) was also out their having fun. Stew Harris was on land working on yet another resurrected I-20. Will Phillippe was also there working on both of our Skiffs.
The RC was staffed by Frank Gallagher, John Kirchner, Chessie the sea monster (see pictures), and myself. Thanks to John for his pics and to Barney for the pre-race pic!