Tag Archives: PRSA Spring Series

2017 Spring Series #7 – June 4

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.

2017-Spring-7-Buccaneer
2017-Spring-7-I-20
2017-Spring-7-Lightning
2017-Spring-7-Multi-Hull

2016 PRSA AGM & Awards Ceremony Wrap-Up

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!

2016 Spring Series #8 Wrap-Up

A handful of Lightnings and one hearty Buccaneer came out Sunday for what turned out to be a beautiful day of sailing.  The forecast was for high winds and possible thunderstorms, but despite a few gusts early in the and some grey clouds it ended up being a wonderful day on the water.  PRO Kyra Tallon and her crew got us 4 beautiful races in a steady southerly breeze.  The wind filled in over the course of the day such that the gusts diminished and the overall velocity became more consistent in the 12-15 range.  There were a few shifts on the day, notably a big lefty in race 3 that ran counter to the overall advantage one gained by sailing right (west) to find breeze and some shifts.  It was a great day to work on boat balance, trim, and downwind angles in a bit of breeze (but not too much).  Fun was had by all and we were back to the dock by 2:30 thanks to a high tide that allowed us to sail just outside the airport pier (though I did dig my centerboard into the mud a few times later in the day).  Overall it was a great way to round out the Spring Series racing!

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2016 Spring Series #7: March Weather in May

On the one hand it is crazy that we had cold rain and temps in the 50s today.  On the other hand, it is also crazy that this might have been one of the best days we have had all spring!  The weather certainly has been crazy, and once again a group of intrepid sailors made the best of it for a day of river racing.  We had 5 Lightnings, 5 or 6 Albacores, 3 I-20s, a Buc, and a couple of Lasers out on the race course.  PRO Bob Gotthardt and his RC crew did a good job to get us 4 races in a shifty, spotty NE breeze.

I was especially pleased to have my parents out on the race course despite the dreary weather.  My Dad sailed with me on #14592 and my Mom took some great photos from the RC boat!  Scores are posted below, and you can keep reading for some details from my vantage point on Lightning #14592.

Continue reading 2016 Spring Series #7: March Weather in May

2016 Spring Series #4

The day turned out to be quite nice.  There was a good  bit of breeze when we showed up but it died as we launched and it was a slow sail up to the course.  After getting up there around noon, we drifted for a bit while the wind switched directions.  RC did their best to get a square course set but for the first race the wind was every where with most of the race being a reach but finishing with the leeward mark being a windward mark and a downwind finish.  After the first race, they moved the marks and we had 2 more races with a decent breeze.  The first 2 races were windward leewards and the last was an olympic.  During the second 2 races the wind was still shifty so playing the shifts was quite important.  All day we had a strong out going current.

2016 Spring Series #4 – Albacores

2016 Spring Series #4 – Buccaneers

2016 Spring Series #4 – Lightnings

2016 Spring Series #4 – Multihulls

Special Note Re: Spring Series #4

There will be no on-shore 1000 skipper’s meeting for Spring Series #4 (Apr. 24) because the Race Committee will already be on the water running races for day 2 of the I-20 Cherry Blossom Regatta.

PRSA Spring Series racing will start as scheduled on the upper course with the first warning signal at 1125.  Competitors should be sure to check in with the RC Signal Boat on the water prior to the first warning.

Spring Series #3: Light and Challenging!

We had a great turnout for Spring Series #3.  Unfortunately the weather was a bit less cooperative, providing us summer drifting conditions.  A determined RC eventually got us off on a W2 race in a very light and patchy southerly after numerous attempts to find breeze and set a course.   I know that at least a few boats were glad that we got that race though, as Sunday saw Lisa-Marie Lane earn her first ever bullet in the Lightning fleet.  Staying patient, staying focused on the conditions, and being mindful of finding clear air appeared to be key for her & team As You Wish.  Lisa-Marie was followed closely by Kristen Burke (skippering Progressive Plastics) in 2nd, and I’m told that this might mark the first time in Fleet 50 history that we had female skippers finish 1-2 in a PRSA series race.  Congrats all around!

I was finally out for my first racing of the spring season aboard Lightning #14592  (sailing with regular crew Piercarlo and welcoming new/interested crew Claudio Purificato aboard) and we quickly relearned some of the cardinal lessons of light air sailing: find clear air (especially after the start), find the next patch of breeze, and mind the current.  I was caught to windward of a pack of boats on the start, which was a mistake.  Groups of boats go very slow together in light wind, and we saw that firsthand.  We were too close to bear off and gain speed; tacking away killed the speed we had, so we were fighting back from the rear from the start.

Piercarlo and Claudio did a great job finding breeze and clear air up the first leg, though, so we were in the hunt at the top mark.  The incoming tide was a big  factor on the afternoon, and I saw numerous boats in different classes take themselves out of the race by cutting it too close to the windward mark.  By the time you got clear and did circles you were at the back of the pack.  We all did a good enough job with the current and we maximized our gains on the few easterly puffs that came through such that we were able to reel in many, but not all, of the 11 Lightnings on the course.

After the racing we all enjoyed a great BBQ around the grill.  Keep reading for the scores and for some more details from the racing.  Please feel free to offer up your own comments here or on the PRSA email listserv!

Continue reading Spring Series #3: Light and Challenging!

Spring Series Racing is Here!

The PRSA Spring Racing Series started on April 3 and will run through June 12.  Are you ready to race?  Here are a few things to remember:

  • Post to the PRSA Crew Connection or peruse the listings there if you are looking for a ride or looking for crew.
  • Check our PRSA Calendar so you know what is happening each weekend.  We have a few special events this spring, including the annual PRSA Rookie Regatta on May 1 and a new PRSA Distance Race on June 12.  On the other Sundays we will run our regular one-design races around the buoys.
  • Make sure to sign up for your RC Duty slots.  Sign up now so that you know when you’re serving and so that you make sure to do your part for PRSA in helping us run safe and fun races.

Racing each  Sunday is followed by a BYO BBQ in the grill area.   Don’t forget to bring some food and drink for you and your crew!

2016 Spring Series #2

The day ended up being a great day of sailing.  On shore we decided that we would have all boats start together as we had no more than 4 boats in any of the fleets.  After a slow sail to the race course while the wind died before shifting to the south, we all got up to the course around 12:15.  The Grahams and Griffins were able to set a course and get the first race off.  The first race had the wind starting out of the southeast and swinging more south during the race.  As the afternoon progressed, the wind continued to swing to the south.  We ended up have different levels of breeze with it varying between 5 and 15 knots.  Race committee was able to get off 4 races and I thoroughly enjoyed having everyone starting together as it allowed for a larger fleet to race against and added more competition,

After sailing, Melissa and Heather held the BBQ and everyone stuck around and had plenty of food, drink, and fun!

2016 Spring Series #1 – Albacores

2016 Spring Series #1 – Buccaneers

2016 Spring Series #1 – Lightnings

2016 Spring Series #1 – Multihulls