It was a good turn out of Lasers for the first week of the Frostbite season. The weather was a little colder and windier than what we have been used to for the start of the season the past couple of years. Around 42 degrees with 12-14 knots of wind. It warmed up as the day went on and the water is not yet super cold creating a really nice day of sailing.
Current was flowing with the wind direction which cut down on the chop. It also made it much easier to keep position at the start by keeping people below the line while stopped. I started most races by parking about a boat length below the line and then accelerating around 10 seconds. The line was setup to be slightly boat favored so I started most of the races a couple of boat lengths down the line from the RC boat concentrating on speed and making sure I was “punched out” from the people around me. I tried not to be involved in any battles for the absolute best starting spot (by the RC boat). On the first beat I generally sailed a long first beat to allow the fleet to shake out if I had clear air. I blew one start and had to tack out early but quickly came back to sail the favored tack early.
We sailed Olympic Courses all day. The legs weren’t super long so I concentrated on using the leg to set up a pass or protect my position on the mark rounding. The were some small waves to surf on the downwind legs but nothing too major. The wind was fairly steady so I didn’t notice the fleet bunching up much on the downwind legs which we usually see a lot of on the Potomac.
On the upwind to the finish the pin end was favored almost every race but I didn’t see a lot of people trying to finish there. I was able to pass a boat by finishing at the pin when they opted to finish at the boat. Perhaps people were paying too much attention to the puffs or shifts rather than trying to sail the shortest course on the last leg.
It was fantastic to enjoy some food and merriment with so many of our sailors at the 2019 PRSA Annual General Meeting and Awards Banquet. Please find below links to the material presented during the meeting. Congratulations to our perpetual awards winners (listed below) and to our new PRSA Executive Committee (listed below). Many thanks to our outgoing officers for their hard work and for their service to PRSA.
2019 PRSA Perpetual Awards
- Founder’s Trophy: Yates Dowell
- Fleet Captain’s Award: Aaron Boesenecker
- Nabeel Alsalam Award: Michael McConnell
- Yates Dowell III Award: Angie Darrah
- Katherine Kearst Award: Daphne Byron
- Len Penso Award: Barney Harris
- Norman C. Shaller Award: David Beckett
2020 PRSA Executive Committee
- Commodore: Tom Hutton
- Vice Commodore: Stew Harris
- Rear Commodore: Aaron Boesenecker
- Secretary: Kyra Tallon
- Treasurer: Jeff Neurauter
2019 AGM Presentation Slides
2019 PRSA Racing Award Winners
Great weather two weeks in a row at the end of the fall series is virtually unheard of on the Potomac, but that is what we had for the final fall series race day of 2019! PRO Frank Gallagher and his RC crew got us 3 nice races in a moderate southerly. Temps in the mid-50s meant that it wasn’t too chilly to stick around for a post-race BBQ and beer. What a great way to wrap up the season!
Albacore Fall Series #8
Buccaneer Fall Series #8
I-20 Fall Series #8
Laser Fall Series #8
Lightning Fall Series #8
Multihull Fall Series #8
After two weeks of lousy weather we finally had a nice day for racing for PRSA Fall Series #7. PRO Farley Will and his crew did a great job in taking full advantage of a nice southerly breeze. After some great racing there was still enough daylight left for a fun BBQ.
Albacores Fall Series #7
Buccaneers Fall Series #7
I-20 Fall Series #7
Laser Fall Series #7
Lightning Fall Series #7
Multihull Fall Series #7
Our PRSA Annual General Meeting and Awards Banquet will be held on Saturday, November 16, at the Evening Star Cafe’s No. 9 Lounge (2000 Mount Vernon Ave, Alexandria VA, 22301). In addition to the regular business of the AGM (including officer reports, awards, and election of officers) we will also consider an amendment to the PRSA Bylaws (see language below). Additional AGM details will be posted soon.
Proposed Amendment to PRSA Bylaws to Article III. Section 3. Part B.3.
The current language reads:
3.A late payment fee of $25 will be assessed for returning members paying dues on or after January 15.
The proposed language is (changes in bold italics):
3.A late payment fee of $25 will be assessed for returning active members paying dues on or after January 15.
Please note that active membership is specifically defined in Article III. Section 1. Part A.
The 2019 PRSA President’s Cup Regatta will be held September 14 & 15 in conjunction with the DC Sail Cantina Cup. We are excited to continue the long tradition of competitive one-design racing that started with the President’s Cup in 1934 as we also partner with our great community sailing partner, DC Sail. Prizes will be awarded for Saturday finishes (Cantina Cup) as well as combined Saturday & Sunday finishes (PRSA President’s Cup). Don’t miss your chance for two days of top-notch one design racing on the Potomac River. Visit the regatta website to register and download the NOR!
Sunday was a gorgeous day for racing on the river! Although the winds were light as we rigged and sailed to the course, a nice southerly filled in for the first few races. 10 Lightnings, 2 Bucs, 3 Multihulls, 2 I-20s, and 2 Lasers came out to sail. PRO Stew Harris and his crew did a nice job organizing the racing, sending the boats off on a W2 and then an O2 in the 10-12 kt southerly. The wind shifted west and then oscillated all over the place after the first two races, making things challenging for the RC and sailors alike. The RC gamely reset the line and then adjusted to hold 2 more races in a very variable westerly. Four races making the best of conditions in sunny (but not too hot) conditions with some breeze is a pretty good way to spend a Sunday!
Here’s the recap of Spring Series #5 racing, written by PRO Jeff Neurauter:
Despite the rain, we saw wonderful breeze on the river today and 4 Albacores and 1 Buccaneer showed up to play. Based on the size of the fleet and types of boats involved, the group decided to race in the river straight out from Washington Sailing Marina. This worked perfectly as it allowed us to get to and back from the race course quickly. The RC set up a W-2 and waited for competitors to arrive.
The first race started with one of the Albacores trying to execute a dip start – unfortunately they remained a boat length above the line and were called over early. The lead Albacore managed to accumulate a sizable lead by the 3rd leg of the course and casually sailed through the finish line on their way to the windward mark. The rest of the Albacores and the Bucc must have noticed this and must not have checked the course flags, because they all sailed through the finish line and then stopped racing! They each peeled off and started pacing back and forth below the start line. Meanwhile the lead Albacore was rounding the windward mark. After a few minutes, some of the Albacores had realized their mistake but none of them continued racing. Instead, the RC and everyone else waited patiently for one Albacore to sail the rest of the racecourse. It took the lone Albacore just over 20 minutes to finish the race and everyone else who started the race was scored DNF.
The second race started with the Albacores aggressively pushing the starting line and once again an Albacore or two were called over early. As this race progressed the wind steadily clocked to the left and by the time boats were on the 3rd leg, it was almost a reach to the windward mark. So we moved the windward mark from the Maryland side of the river to the Virginia side, squared the starting line, and prepared for the 3rd race.
The third race started with the Albacores again fighting for space on the line and again the RC called boats over early. As this race progressed, the wind clocked back to the right so we had to move the windward mark back to toward the Maryland side of the river for the next race.
By the fourth start, the Albacores had figured things out and made it off the line cleanly. This race brought the most exciting competition as the there were several very close roundings and position changes throughout the race by the top 3 boats.
Spring Series #4 was a drizzly day, but we did have enough wind to race. The RC set up a course just outside the airport pier and we were able to get 3 races in while the water levels were high enough and the rain light enough. Once boats started bumping bottom and the rain really came in we headed to shore, dried off, and then headed over to Rustico for a beverage and a bite in a spot a bit drier (and warmer) than the grove.
Spring Series #4 Albacores
Spring Series #4 Buccaneers
Spring Series #4 Laser
Spring Series #4 Lightnings
Our regular PRSA Spring Series is underway and the PRSA Spring Regatta will be held on May 25-26. Join us for great fun on and off the water!