Date: 07/30/2003 Log Entry: Race
Distance: .0 Weather: Clear, high thin overcast, little wind Current: flood 1828 Ram Island
Course: Fishers Island West Harbor Crew: Brian, Bob, & RW
MRMSA Wed Night Summer Series - Abandoned
Motored over to the Flat Hammock starting area. Race postponed at 1755 & abandoned at 1830 hours.
Date: 07/26/2003 Log Entry: Race
Weather: Clear, Wind: WSW 10-8 <5, 5-7 kt
Current: flood 1540 RI
Course: Two WL races Distance: 8.0
Crew: Dave C. - foredeck, Bob - mid, Seth - aft, RW-helm
MRMSA Volvo Leukemia Cup
Winds: 8-10 kts, slacking to <5 (1st race), 5-7 kts (2nd race)
Start â€“ just west of Horseshoe Reef,Â 1115 hrs first race, 1340 hrs second race
Course #1 â€“ windward to DropMark 1.5 nm at 230 degrees, two laps
Course #2 â€“ windward to DropMark 1.0 nm at 245 degrees, two laps (shortened to 1 lap)
Current: ebbing, flood to start 1540 hrs at Ram Island
We left the dock with a forecast of late morning & afternoon winds of 15 knots and greater. In the first race, Seth got us off to a good start midline, and we tacked at the first opportunity to a favored port tack with compass numbers of 265 to 275 for some westing near the shore in less current.
With a total of six tacks to lay the mark, a bearway set on the rounding and a jibe soon as traffic allowed, Dave handling the foredeck for the first time like a pro, we then carried port all the way to the leeward mark.Â Â After a smooth douse and rounding in 8 kts of wind, hardening up I found us headed now to 315. Over-reacting, I elected to tack out on starboard, which would not have been so bad had the wind not died five minutes later as we neared Sea Flower, in the middle of the channel, current headed with no avenue for relief. We should have hugged the shore regardless of the header.Â Thirty-five minutes into the leg and still shy of the mark with Valiant (Tartan 34) for company, the chase boat came out asking us to withdraw so they could get the second race underway. We quickly mounted the outboard and scooted back to the starting area.Â
In the second race, Seth got us off again to a good midline start.Â We again tacked to port, wind favored and the best tack for current relief along the shore. Just short of Pine Island, we swapped tacks for a long hitch towards the windward mark. Snagging a lobster pot on the rudder about four minutes into starboard, found Seth head first off the stern rail, Bob hanging onto his ankles to free us in less than 30 seconds. Nearly laying the mark, amid much congestion and shouting, we tacked back out and purposely overstood to clear all the commotion, got a good set and jibed to favored port and found ourselves ahead of Hellfire for a twenty minute race to the finish, in winds of only 5 to 6 we stayed high, then jibed back to starboard for the final ten minutes to the finish crossing four seconds ahead of Hellfire.Â They made a mistake similar to our rounding of the leeward mark in the first race, and took starboard out from the start.Â We finished 3rd in the second race, and 6th overall out of 11 boats in our class, considering our DNF in the first race.
Thanks so much to all for your contributions, to the Leukemia Society. We gathered $738 in SeTherinâ€™s behalf.
Scaling it out on a chart later, I determined, had we gone the other way on the second windward leg of the first race, we may have made the windward mark, though probably not avoided the withdrawl request, as the wind had diminished over the whole course by that time. In the second race, the first leg took us 45 minutes to the windward mark with a 1 nm rhumbline, where we withdrew just 35 minutes into the second leg of the first race with a 1.5 nm rhumbline in similar winds.
Discuss our options tacking on the header versus current relief
So much for the forecast
Date: 07/02/2003 Log Entry: Race
Distance: 3.0 Weather: Clear, Wind: S 8-5, < 5 kts Current: ebb 1330 @ RI
Course: s/f-W-DM-W-s/f with port roundings Crew: Brian-foredeck, Bobby -mid, Seth -aft, RW -helm
MRMSA Wed Night Spring Series - Race 7
Wednesday Night Start: 1800 hours.
The start for the last race of Wed. Night Spring Series was set up in the approach to Fishers Island West Harbor just outside of Flat Hammock, with â€œWâ€ R6 in the mouth of the harbor a mile upwind, back downwind DM, at the halfway point on the rhumbline, back toÂ â€œWâ€ with a final run to the start/finish line for a total of 3 miles.Â
A so-so start in 7-8 kts of wind found us sandwiched between Sassy Lassie to windward and Jolly Mon to leeward. A short port tack to clear Jolly Monâ€™s leebow found us shortly back on starboard to windward of the fleet playing the shifts and pressure up the course, with great tacking and trimming on crewsâ€™ part. Bearing away after good set at the mark, with the wind dropping to six or so, we played the middle of the course with a series of jibes. Approaching DM found us sixth behind Blue Light. Raising the genoa on starboard with a port leeward douse, Brian quickly stowed the pole, & we jibed around the mark to find Blue Light going backwards in some kind of snafu. Offering our condolences, we hardened up back to speed for the final beat to windward in the dying air.
With the whole crew looking for air and Seth watching the numbers, a series of tacks got us back up to the layline for another smooth set. A couple minutes after rounding, Sethâ€™s attentive eyes noticed Jolly Mon way off to the right near Clay Point about to jibe to port in a long wind band stretching all the way to the finish. That was the ticket, yet I felt we had missed the train. Seeing little to no wind between us, I decided on another run down the middle in extremely spotty light air. In retrospect, maybe we should have invested on the reach towards Clay Point as the wind band held there throughout the race. I was concerned that dividend would expire prior to our arrival. Shortly thereafter, we belatedly switched to the light-air spinnaker sheets. Had we switched earlier, I may have continued towards Clay Point. The performance of a .5oz spinnaker vs. our .6oz crossed my mind also. Working our way down course, connecting the patches of air we crossed fifth boat for boat in our class with no gain in correction, and 29th corrected in a fleet of fifty boats.
Kudos to the RC for the course selection; any other start area would have resulted in an abandoned race for lack of wind.
Congratulations to John McCrea (regular crew on Crystal Slipper) and his father Peter for winning their class in the Doublehanded return of the Bermuda 1-2 Yacht Race, of which his father won the first singlehanded leg
Date: 06/25/2003 Log Entry: Race
Distance: 4.0 Weather: Clear, Wind: SW 8-10 & 5 kts Current: flood 1440 RI
Course: s/f-B-s/f, port rounding Crew: Brianâ€“foredeck, Bobby â€“mid, Seth â€“aft, RW â€“helm
MRMSA Wed Night Spring Series - Race 6
With start line set in the original â€œXâ€ starting area, the course was posted as â€œBâ€ Black Ledge Râ€2â€, downwind to the s/f then back windward to â€œVâ€ Vixen Ledge Râ€2â€ and return to s/f, with port roundings.Â All courses from the â€œXâ€ starting area to the west put a dogleg in the rhumbline due to Horseshoe Reef.Â We felt initially, the left side of the course would be favored, due to fresher air and favorable current out in the channel.Â So starting on the port end near the pin would be shortest distance to that goal. Had I stuck to our starting strategy, we would have faired much better.Â For some reason I got stuck down by the committee boat with one & a half minutes to go.Â We were just coming up on the committee boat as the gun went off, in the company of Jolly Mon rolling us to windward and Blue Light on our stern. After Jolly Mon passed I decided on a clearing track to port, which in retrospect was not a good call as it lengthened the time getting out to the current and fresh air in the channel.
With most of our class rounding ahead, we tacked in eight knots of wind on the starboard layline slightly short of abeam the mark, the current in our favor and inside an overstood Legacy bearing off on our windward hip. Clearly in error, GoodGoose came in on port directly to the mark, amongst loud protesting by John Reed, almost hitting Legacy mid-port cockpit.Â Fortunately, the antics had no effect on us, and we rounded above it all with a nice bearway set.Â All the boats in our class continued on starboard. Following our normal strategy in a flood, we jibed to port towards the airport at the first opportunity for current relief near shore. Turning too fast, RW screwed the jibe causing the spinnaker to collapse with momentary wrap of the headstay, though, in seconds the crew had it flying.
Brian noticed a few boats closer to shore losing their wind, so we split the difference with a good jibe back to starboard. Looking forward to Horseshoe, we noticed boats ahead sailing into a hole, plus the majority of the fleet ahead to starboard in the channel drifting. With Seth managing the spinnaker & Bob trimming, we slowly crept up on them, and for a few minutes pulled ahead of Jolly Mon.Â A couple of toots from the committee boat signaled their decision to shorten the race in the dying wind. We briefly fantasized about getting our first gun. About five minutes from the line a little breeze began to build from starboard and Jolly Mon pulled away to cross 31 seconds ahead.Â Winning our class on corrected time by over 6 minutes, gave us our highest ever fleet finish of 12.Â
- Remain flexible, yet stack to strategy, unless good reason not to.
- We did not get the expected current relief towards shore. Maybe we did not go in far enough, yet it was best that jibed when we did as there little wind near shore.
Date: 06/18/2003 Log Entry: Race
Distance: 4.0 Weather: Cloudy, threat of rain, Wind: SE 6 kts & less Current: ebb 1455 RI
Course: s/f-DM-s/f-DM-s/f, port roundings Crew: Brianâ€“foredeck, Bobby â€“mid, Seth â€“aft, RW â€“helm
MRMSA Wed Night Spring Series - Race 5
Â Wednesday the 18th was SeTherinâ€™s first race of the 2003 season. The s/f was near the old â€œXâ€ starting area with a drop mark (DM) at 160 degrees and 1 mile, a bit east of Flat Hammock.
Arriving to the starting line with less than 10 minutes to spare, did not afford time to fully scope out the conditions.Â In the less than five-knot wind, I was concerned about the ebb shoving us past the line. Over compensating, I botched the start.Â An approach on starboard had us almost parallel to the line, tacking to port in the light air had us crossing the better part of a minute late.Â
There must have been a big left shift after the RC set the course, for we found a port reach would lay the mark.Â Continuing on port, we sailed a bit loose due the ebb and laid the mark nicely within 4 to 5 boat lengths.
Our strategy on first run was to hang on starboard towards the north shore near Groton Long Point, then jibe to port for the leeward mark in less current.Â Problem, there was less wind as we neared the GLP.Â Those that stayed in the middle faired better.Â Rounding the mark with a leeward douse to starboard, we found the wind clocked to the right about twenty degrees or so, though still very light.Â In hindsight, we should not have footed quite as much on the last windward leg, plus my occasional erratic steering did not help.Â Â Â About 100 yards out, we tacked to starboard for the mark, and had a great bearaway set.
A visible wind alley appeared down the middle of the course, though little it was (4 to zip and back to 4) against the dying ebb.Â Theoretically, one should sail higher and jibe more often in such conditions. Though seeing boats ahead of us having difficulty filling their chutes after a jibe, convinced me to sail deeper with fewer chances of a chute wrap I a jibe.
Only six showed up out ten on our classâ€™s scratch sheet. We finished fourth boat for boat and corrected to third.Â All in all, we felt pleased with our first effort of the 2003 season, thanks to Brian, Bob and Seth.
-Â Â Â Â Â Had we done a practice cross of the line for orientation purposes, we would known theÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â windward mark was a reach. Â
-Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â If and when we switch to & from light-genoa sheets &/or outboard/inboard tracks, we need to make sure the spinnaker sheets remain outboard the genoa sheets.
-Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â If the next windward mark rounding is to port, lets douse to the port side, regardless if itâ€™s a leeward, windward or mexican
-Â Â Â Â Â On our jibes, we should have the same person handle the sheet and guy during the jibe, to better fly the spinnaker freely.
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