Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Day 2, Formula World Championships - Foreign Planets Are Friendly Today

Conditions came back down to earth and back to normal today, a lovely 12-17 knots, flat water, and big gusts. Today we completed four races and I didn't even have to change a sail.

I organized my equipment better today, and staged my sails from the competitors' tent. This meant competing for space in the tent and rigging on top of others' gear, but I didn't have to drag everything up and down the hill. As yesterdays' crazy conditions were fresh in my mind, I rigged the 9.0 and 9.8, leaving the 10.7 a third of the way staged across my bags.

photo by Gabriel Palmioli - windsurfargentino.com

The wind fills in quickly on the lake, and when it comes, a line of whitecaps contrast sharply with the glassy morning water. The race committee immediately sprung into action and whistled for us to get off the beach. I am finding that my speed is decent, but I'm not as fast as the top girls. I'll keep tuning my gear to try and find a little more speed. My starts are good and tactics solid, and I posted a 2-3-3-3 today.

photo by Gabriel Palmioli - windsurfargentino.com

The trick of the lake is to get as high as possible off the start line and close to the cliff walls on the first tack. If you don't get up high, you'll get stuck in a hole in the middle of the course. The wind funnels down a big valley, and the upper middle of the course is usually pretty gusty. Big gusts hit the beach every so often and send dust flying. The safest place to be is on the water, away from the flying debris and occasionally equipment. Between races we come back to the beach for water and equipment tuning. The committee boat is close to the beach, so it's easy to watch the men's start and see their tactics

Over the last two days, we completed six races out of fifteen. With four days of racing left, the most likely schedule will be 3, 3, 2, and one race on the last day.

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