Monday, August 4, 2008

Mastering an Equipment-Intensive Class

Leba, Poland - August 2, 2008 -Today brought the first cloudy, rainy day in about a week at the Allegro Cup. The wind started out light and gradually built throughout the day, as did the waves. The first two races saw tamer conditions as the current hadn’t really started and the waves hadn’t picked up. We started on time and the girls had the third start.

Overall I sailed pretty well today, I’m still having the same technique issues (but it seems to be getting better as I was pointing a bit better today). I had a couple of great starts and one bad one when a girl came down on top of me and I dropped off a plane. The main tactic was to get over to the shoreline as there was a bit of a lift on port tack which continued throughout the day. The wind was up and down, the first two races had steady wind, and our third race was actually abandoned.

After a short delay we were called out again and the third and fourth races had bigger chop and swell, and also current in the same direction as the wind. By the time the fourth race was started, the current was so strong that I was starting well upwind of the committee boat just to give myself drift room before the start. At the shoreline there was also a big current that made getting in and out kinda challenging. The fourth race had really light shifty wind and it was challenging to keep up with everyone. Everyone was looking for puffs to transition in. A few girls and I finished well behind the fleet. It was really frustrating getting upwind.

So I haven’t made much of a comeback. I’ve been reminded that Formula racing like this is really equipment-intensive. However, I am starting and racing better than a bunch of girls who have the good gear. That said, results don’t really reflect my performances. At any rate it is fun. We are all finishing every day totally exhausted.


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