All posts by Michael A. Heinsdorf

PRSA Spring Series #2

Sunday, April 14, the day before taxes are due, was sunny, warm and windy, which was a great excuse for all who procrastinate on their taxes to get on the water. We had 6 cats, 5 Albacores and 4 Lightings out on the water – not bad considering that RC was a couple Albacores and Buccaneers and the Lightings were off drinking moonshine. It’s been a while since six Hobies showed up on the water, so kudos to the Hobie fleet for getting the boats out!

We got off a total of 4 races by about 2:30PM, which was a big difference from last weekend when we got blown off the water after one race by gusts approaching 30 knots. And we competed with the barbeque record set last week, with last sailors leaving almost at 7pm. However, no charcoal was in site, so we munched on cupcakes from Georgetown cupcake brought by a potential crew and some tasty jalapeno, cheese and bacon bites made by one of the Hobie sailors.

Breeze was mainly out of the north, coming from the direction of the National Cathedral, and was anywhere from 0 to just under 15 knots. The races were a mix of triangles and windward-leeward courses, all twice around except for the last Lightning race, which was just once around. And what a hard fought race that turned into. Chris and Rick were battling to get the windward mark just as the breeze died. Combine the lack of breeze with a current that was not in their favor and it became a painful slog to the windwark mark. Just as they got the windward mark, the breeze filled in, and it was a quick run down to the leeward mark, where the race committee was about to head with an “S” flag and a whistle, so they could finish and head on home. But alas, it was not their day.

The Carolina 19 had been tied up to the Bayliner for most of the day, as it was much more fun to hang out on the Bayliner, which was functioning as a doggy day care facility and had shade. Enthusiastic RC members cast the 19 off the Bayliner, before starting the engine. This turned into a slight issue as the engine refused to start – it turned out that it just needed a couple pumps of the bulb, but of course this happened while we were finishing one race and the boat was drifting away. It also meant that the Lightnings were able to round the mark and started heading up to the finish line.

But it wasn’t meant to be. The wind completely died, the current was strong, and the sailors ended up losing their patience after about half an hour and one by one gave up and started paddling home.

Sailing Tomorrow? Lightings in Leesylvania and some sweet sailing videos

Tomorrow looks like better weather than we had last weekend, so who’s up for some sailing? After last weekend, the weather can only get better. The Lightings are in Leesylvania, so I’m hoping to see a good number of cats, Bucs and Albacores, as everyone is guaranteed at least one more start than normal!

This weekend is the annual Doc Gilbert Regatta in Leesylvania State Park. This is the first of two regattas hosted by Lighting Fleet 50 the year – the second is the Dixie Districts. Information on the Doc Gilbert Regatta is here:

The Olympics are this year, and the US Sailing Team is well represented, but the Swiss, so far, have the best multimedia. If you find yourself stuck inside, check out some awesome video of the Swiss Sailing Team here: and here:

2011 Albacore Internationals

The 2011 Albacore Internationals were held from 16-23 September in Toronto, Canada.  Over sixty boats from three different countries participated, with wind conditions ranging from extremely light to a steady 20 knots with puffs up to 30 knots.  PRSA and Potomac River Albacore Fleet member Barney Harris, with crew David Byron, won the event, with a net score of 22 after 12 races (with two drops).  See video coverage of the event here:  You’ve got to see what happens when we find a boat somewhere it shouldn’t be here, in a short video we call “An Albacore on Castaway Bay”,

Albacore 2010 Video Mashup

Check out the Some great shots of Albacores in anything from 10-30 knots of breeze from Sarasota, the Chesapeake and Canada.  Some great shots and commentary of Barney Harris, local Albacore sailor and current World Champion.  But will he be able to defend the Championship in the 2011 Internationals in Toronto, Canada?  Watch for the encore presentation after the credits.