The forecast and the actual weather didn’t line up at all which makes me leery. The weather called for light winds from the west switching to stronger from the south. When I got to the marina winds were light and shifty but coming from the north by the time we got on the water. The first two races were in the light and shifty stuff with a very strong down river current. RC wisely got the races off without worrying about a perfect course. For the first races I was focused on managing current rather than wind and this seemed to help some. I would head offset to the mark to counteract the current. In the very light wind, when it’s too light for tell-tails and wind vanes, I use a wet finger to determine where the wind is coming from. Then I setup the sail so it looks correct relative to where I think the wind is coming from. I steer to try to make sure I’m not pinching, as speed takes a while to build and there isn’t enough wind to show pinching in the sail. After the second race the wind died completely and it looked like wind would fill from the south. As the wind came in RC did a quick course reset and we got in 3 more races with a nice breeze. The current was still strong and was now pushing boats over the line. I was OCS in the last two races, and I managed to force Nich with me in the last race. Factoring in the current would have helped me here. In the medium breeze I’m keeping the boat very flat and looking for clear air on the favored tack. I focus on pointing and keeping my speed up. I did manage to factor in current for the windward mark layline and picked up a few boats the overstood. Overall it was a nice and sunny day, great to be out on the water. We also had Richie come out for the first time so welcome to him. Thanks again to John and Mike for doing RC!
Third Place Write-Up, 2020 Frostbite #8 – 1/12/2020
This Sunday we lucked out with wind. There was a storm Saturday that passed perfectly. We were catching the tail end so that there was good breeze that later Sunday dropped to very little wind. The weather reports indicated strong wind, but on the day it was less that predicted. Turnout was good with some new fast sailors making an appearance.
I had some good starts and some not so good starts. The wind was a bit up and down as well as shifty. My bad starts I though I was in good position in the middle of the line, then a shift put me unable to fetch the pin end. Another time a swirl put me in irons pre-start, very not-good as boats going backward have no rights. Fortunately the boats around me all pass me without incident so, through no skill of my own, I didn’t foul anyone.
Upwind there were some small and big shifts. Sometimes I got these right and passed boats, sometime I got this wrong and lost boats. I’m getting better at steering, telling when I’m getting headed vs when I’m just pinching. A lesson I need to learn better is when the wind is this shifty to try to stay in the middle of the course to not get buried by a big shift. The oddest thing going up wind was when closer to the mark it seems there were swirls, possibly from jets or from puffs dropping to the water. A swirl would seem to have wind but it would not be from any specific direction. One race I thought I was tacking on a header but in reality was not. The tack didn’t help and I’d given up all my speed to the swirl. Other times boats ahead of me would get caught in them, dramatically slowing down, like I had. The swirls were very localized so getting hit by one seemed to be luck.
We had windward-leeward courses set so downwind was more or less strait down wind. I had more success staying on starboard rather than jibing. There were puffs that could sometimes be taken advantage of as well as a cross current that meant going inside was beneficial. I aimed for puffs more than trying to fight for a tactical position. This worked out okay, and I managed to avoid a couple of big pinwheels. Big thank you to RC for coming out and setting a course in the messy wind.
While the prediction was for no wind, we had a nice steady southerly all day. It might have gusted up to 8, but never went really light. Also not very shifty. I think I managed to get on the wrong side of whatever shifts there were however.
It was a beautiful sunny day with temperatures in the 40s and winds in the 10 to 18 mph range. Unfortunately, the wind was from the west which limits the length of the windward leg. So the race committee created a new rectangle (parallelogram) course with windward, reach, downwind, and reach legs in the hope of giving the sailors some planning opportunities. The races were quite long by frostbite Laser standards but the race committee got in 4 twice around races and 1 once around. The winds were puffy enough that there were quite a few capsizes.
19 sailors came out including Dave and Randy from the Marsh Creek Club in central PA and the Jacob family of James, Alex, and Erin.
The RC was Nabeel Alsalam, Jim Klein, Dan Miller, and Jacob Donkersloot.
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