Crew: Brian, Seth, Bob & RW
Winds: avg 236 @ 3.5 kts
Weather: Clear, Temp 67 F; Baro 29.98
Current: ebb 1627 North Hill
Start/Finish: offshore of GLP Starting Area, near mid-channel
Course: s/f–DM–s/f *2, Distance: 240 at .7 nm, shortened to 1 lap, 1.4 nm total
Another night, the last of the WNR Season; the wind-gods were again less than accommodating. The situation was compounded by the RC setting up nearly in the middle of the channel with an ebb in progress for nearly two hours ( & becoming stronger) with a forecast of diminishing wind.We started at the pin on favored port, a bit late crossing the last of the starboard sterns, with Breakin’ Wind three of four boat lengths directly ahead, then tacked after five or so minutes. Wunder Dog, Salud & Cosmic were successful playing the middle, while Draggin’ Z continued out on starboard from the start to the current shadow of northeast of N. Dumpling. There they tacked in a wind-band to proceed unencumbered to the mark.
For us, playing the middle was a bad strategy, particularly in light air as the faster boats pull ahead precluding any clear air for us. I’ve earned enough of these t-shirts, you’d think I’d remember. For our boat, Draggin Z's solution would have been best. On our first or second starboard we noticed a twa in the high 20's to 30 degrees, where it had been 65 on port. The port car was moved fwd significantly to compensate.
The headed port tack was another sign favoring the left side of the course towards N. Dumpling, as that would be where the new fresher wind would most likely appear. From this we were deterred by an extremely long swath of debris in the water. And by the time we cleared it on port the wind had died.
About, 1823 the wind died and finding ourselves going backwards, we anchored. After ten minutes or so, on a teaser, Brian began to weigh anchor unsuccessfully. Finally with Bob & Seth’s help the anchor surfaced with a lobster-crate in its teeth. Finally free, we drifted backwards for the next 25 minutes. As there were half-dozen boats or more in similar straits, the RC elected not to award prospective finish times as done on 08/11/10. The official deadline for the race is 2030 hours, so we just hung in.
Finally, as a new breeze slowly, slowly moved in from the southwest, we began creeping forward at 1920. It died again around a quarter to eight for five minutes or so, then slowly strengthened enough to get us up to the layline. I overstood significantly, though still had to tack again to avoid the mark prior to rounding. Then it was wing & wing1 back to the Eddie Maxwell; finishing with three minutes to spare (before to the time-limit).
Now standing by to see what havoc "Hurricane Earl" may unleash!
Link to FOX News Interview
1- We had already begun to clean up the boat and had put the spinnaker gear away for the night.