Greetings from 3rd place (barely). It looked like Sunday would have been rainy and moderately to quite windy – and instead, we got mostly just overcast with not much wind at all, but still enough for several races. Many thanks to Jim Graham and Jim Greenley for running RC very well and for kindly letting us get in before the rain really got going. Also congrats to Farley and Nich for some great and consistent sailing (and good to see you out there, Nich!). Scores attached.
Sunday was my first day sailing in quite a while and it was one of those days where I struggled to find my groove. That said, here are a few thoughts:
- Starting on time. There were a few starts where I was on the line and going (or perhaps even still a bit under) at the gun and I noticed many folks were not on or close to the line. During the final start, many folks were still several boat lengths behind the line on the boat side at 20 seconds to go. It made getting a good start easier for me, but it would (of course) have been better if we were all on the line and ready to go at the gun. I tried to focus on being on the line (even if it was more in the middle) and going with speed at the gun rather than risk being buried behind transoms at the boat end and it mostly worked.
- Speed vs. Looking Around. It was a weird wind day b/c it was so light and not super shifty. So speed really mattered – and especially not pinching (but not heading down too much either). So I spent more mental energy than usual trying to “feel” for what angle was fastest and had to keep reminding myself to keep my head out of the boat to look for puffs and where the other boats were. I think I did sort of okay balancing this but there were a few times when I missed tacking when I should have because I was focusing too much on speed – or was looking out too much and not focusing enough on speed.
- A few things I did also that might be helpful: 1) tried to tack when I was in someone’s wind shadow, even if it meant tacking back after a few boat lengths, just to get clear air; 2) Kept my vang snugged at 2-blocked (MK2 sail) when going upwind and then let mostly off going downwind (but still a little tension) (if you have a non-MK2, vang upwind should have been looser); 3) outhaul mostly at a bit less than a hand’s width at the middle of the boom going upwind (looser going downwind); 4) very little cunningham/downhaul all day.
Overall, it was great to see everyone, and looking forward to more wind (and sun) at some point soon (fingers crossed)!
And Happy Holidays and Happy (almost) New Year,