Mudheads WNR 2002

Date: 08/28/2002 Log Entry: Race
Distance: 7.0 Weather: NE 15-20+ kts Current: ebb 1500 Ram
Course: s/f-R-N-R (f),p Crew: Brian, Bob & RW

Last MRMSA Wed Night-Summer Series-Race 7


A little late arriving to the starting area, we were further compromised when the boomkicker came apart which we quickly removed and stowed below. And had RW reeved the first reef line earlier in the day, we may have made the line on time. The course was from the start ¼ mile north of the Flat Hammock nun R"2" to Ram Island nun R"20" to fishers Island North Hill R"2" back windward to finish at Ram Island for a total distance of 7 nm. It was a memerable evening, though not for sunsets and , mid-level cloud cover, the rain held off.


Three minutes late for the line, we rounded the committee boat and hardened up on starboard towards the Mystic River in fairly lumpy seas due to the northeasterly against the ebb. With starboard favored in the current lift

avoiding port tack till we laid the mark in the flatter water near shore.

Offshore in the greater current,a port tack was fairly rough.  Ten minutes into the race the knotmeter went dead. Finally nearing the shallows southwest of Ram Island we tacked to port for the mark.


Electing not to run the spinnaker, we jibed around the mark as Brian and Bob made a few adjustments from the spinnaker set to wing&wing, and in short order we had the heavy WP poled out to starboard, the reef shook out and the main cranked back up to full hoist on the beeline for North Hill, Fishers Island, NY.

Occassionally surfing with a GPS speed of over six knots, the rudder vibrating and the whole boat humming, we  must have had over eight kts of boatspeed a few times, considering we were bucking a good ebb. If only the knotmeter were working, a missed opportunity with computer data log and the updated polars.


A number of competitors ahead of us chose a dogleg, south of Flat Hammock and the Dumplings.  After some discussion, we stuck to our between the Dumplings

strategy, the shallow water plan skirting the north edges of Flat Hammock and South Dumpling.  We skimmed past the the Flat Hammock nun with the end of the boom clearing the top of the nun by a little over a foot.  Here in the shallow water our strategy paid off with our GPS over the ground speed picking up to nearly 7 knots.


As we cleared the Dumplings, Bob and Brian put the first reef back in and got things set back up for upwind. Moving over to give the J29-Tomahawk room at the mark, set us up for a fast tight rounding of the mark. Extending on port for a good bit to insure a starboard in the middle of the Dumplings for the best current and clearance of the south shore of North Dumpling, we then setup for a long current lifted tack across to the Connecticut shore. 


With the rail occassionly buried and water sloshing in the cockpit, doing my best to steer through the waves and keep my balance on the barney post; glancing over my shoulder, I saw the J35-Zorro coming up on our rear. I

thought he would pass above us, but he bore off to our leeward shouting words of encouragement and complementing our pointing ability, "Boy, does that

thing point."  


When Brian called 85 degrees on the windward mark we swapped to a slighlty looser and powered up tack through the rougher waves.  While we kept the tacks to a minimum, the few we had were very smooth, with Bob staying down low long enough to skirt the foot with a good yank on the genoa clew as Brian ground in the sheet while hiking from the new weather side, then Bob

clambored up shortly thereafter.  We now found urselves ahead of Sanibel since we last crossed tacks in the middle of the Sound; as they tacked and followed us to the finish. Quite a race for the last Wednesday of the season.


A couple of minutes after crossing the finishing and rounding R"20", the knotmeter came back on. Broadreaching back to Noank, we exceeded six knots a

few times.


Spinnaker                                             Time on Time

Yacht    Type   Skipper, PHRF    Elapsed Corrected


1 SeTherin  Catalina 22 Magner, 273  95.45    75.39


2 Tumult      Ericson 30-1 Litke,   215   89.37    75.94


3 GoodGoose  P Triton Richardson,249  99.87  81.25


4 SassyLassie  Newport 28 Burnham, 162  90.23  82.37


5 Sanibel  Pearson                    Keeler, 199  95.8   83.14


6 Nell    Bristol 32   Gleason, 247     400 DNS


7 Raggedy Ann  Ericson 25 Bonola, 234  400 DNS


8 Blue Lite        Cal 25    Giulini, 225  400    DNS


9 Gael Force    C&C 24   Harren, 218 400   DNS

Date: 08/21/2002 Log Entry: Race
Distance: 4.0 Weather: SW 0-7 kts Current: flood 1643 Ram
Course: s/f-N-s/f (p) Crew: Brian, Bob, Tracy & RW

MRMSA Wed Night Summer Series - Race 6


The evening started off in a festive mood when Tomahawk arrived at the starting area flying a dozen or so balloons "It's a girl" in celebration of helmsman Woody Bergendahl's new daughter.  Tomahawk just returned from the J29 North Americans, where they finished 5th after eight races, a busy week for the Bergendahls & Lockwoods.


After removing the outboard, Bob and Brian quickly reverted to the light genoa sheets.

In the extremely light air start, we somehow managed to stay to out of others exhaust and avoid being swept over the line by the current. The boats either side (Hellfire & MiniMaxie) of us were called over early and had to return. We soon bailed out to port for greater clearance to windward, which I mistakenly held too long before noticing greater wind on the left side of the course.  As we sailed back across on starboard, we could see a number of boats (Gael Force, Blue Light Special, Hellfire and others) in the far-left corner as they arrived at a wind band stretching to the windward mark.  The trick was to go left towards wind band near the Flat Hammock Can "1". It appeared Blue Light and Gael Force were having a private race.  Unfortunately, they were able to cross us before we got to the band.  


One more series of tacks to clear ND got us through the Dumplings with the current.  Careful not to overstand the North Hill Nun in the favorable current, we laid the line on starboard and Brian set the pole. As Bob cranked back the guy and Tracy began to feed out the spinnaker we noticed a big snafu with the sheets. All three quickly attacked the problem resolving it in time for the rounding.  Problem- when attaching the sheets to the spinnaker, they were not routed over and clear of the genoa sheets.


Sassy Lassie, Gael Force, BlueLight Special and Tumult rounded before us, with Sanibel trailing somewhat behind for some reason.  We took a high reach between South Dumpling and Fishers favoring the shallow water of South Dumpling and Flat Hammock for current relief


Crossing the point, we bore off for the shallow water along the east side of Flat Hammock. Nearing the nun we then freshened up towards the Can "1".  We did not get quite as much boost off Flat Hammock in the shallow water as on July 24th and August 7th when the east wind caused a stronger flood. I believe it was still the hot way to go though, as the boats passing through the Dumplings seems to be at a stand still.  


Spinnaker Trim comments: The foot should never be drawn tight. If you see it tight the sheet either needs to be eased of the pole should go forward.  Likewise the foot should hardly ever touch the forestay, and requires the same corrective measures.


In retrospect, I should have chosen a hotter angle towards to Can "1". We delayed the jibe, concerned that doing so too soon would cause us to be swept past the finish and be faced with the difficulty of running directly downwind against the current in light air.  

Here Sanibel, taking a similar course caught and passed us about a ¼ mile from the finish. Finishing just 39 seconds behind Sanibel, we crossed in ahead of G.F., BLS and Tumult all us with in a minute, 7-second spread, with SeTherin correcting to first. 

Thanks again to Dennis for use of his trusty outboard.


Spinnaker                                          Time on Time

Yacht              Type                  Skipper, PHRF Elapsed Corrected


1 SeTherin         Catalina 22 Magner,273  85.52 67.54


2 SassyLassie Newport 28 Burnham,162  75.70 69.11


3 Blue Lite         Cal 25         Giulini, 225  85.80 71.96


4 Gael Force C&C 24          Harren, 218  85.73 72.56


5 Tumult         Ericson 30-1 Litke, 215  85.98 73.05


6 GoodGoose PearsonTriton Richardson,249  90.02 73.23


7 Sanibel         Pearson         Keeler,199  84.87 73.65


8 RaggedyAnn Ericson 25 Bonola,234  95.20 78.93


9 Nell                 Bristol 32   Gleason,247 DNS

Date: 08/14/2002 Log Entry: Race
Distance: .0 Weather: 80's litlle to no wind Current: ebb 1612 RI
Course:  Crew: BB, BF, TD & RW

Race Abandoned - No Wind


Retired to the dock for a few beers & good times

Date: 08/07/2002 Log Entry: Race
Distance: 6.0 Weather: N 10-12, gust mid teens Current: flood 1636  Ram
Course: s/f-X-W-X (p) Crew: Brian, Bob, Tracy & RW

MRMSA Wed Night Summer Series - Race 5


 With an offshore wind out of the North the R/C set up the line approximately half way between a Drop/Mark at the old “X” starting area and “W” the R”6” nun marking the entrance of Fishers Island West Harbor. 


We were off line with a reasonable start, tacking to port (favored, & lifted by the flood) at the first opportunity. The wind was light crossing the line still on starboard, but built into the teens shortly after our tack to port, so dealt with some excessive weather helm prior to getting the gears shorted out – outhaul, cunningham(s), backstay, etc. With everyone working hard on the tacks, Tracy skirting the genoa then clambering up the high side we made good time to the windward mark. The wind gusting to the mid-teens and the starboard rail dipping in the water, we laid the mark with two pairs of tacks, rounding slightly behind Gael Force. 


I cannot remember why we were late with the set (bearaway), though we were able to hold our own with the boats of our class down the run. With Brian on the pole, Bob on the sheets, and Tracy handling the mast rake, boomvang, twings and mainsheet our jibe at North Dumbling, and back to starboard inside Flat Hammocks nun R”2” went off with out a hitch.


Not realizing the port sheet was cleated at the winch, preventing the genoa hoist caused the leeward mark douse to be a bit discombobulated.  Back up to speed after the rounding, following a bit of cleanup, two hitches to starboard took into us the lee shallows of the Hammock, where a port board paid off with a  .4 kt eddy in our favor. Cutting inside the nun again, we stayed on port benefiting from a current lift as we moved into the channel. Noticing a header we took one more hitch on starboard prior to laying the finish for a final beat on port, crossing the line two minutes and 12 seconds behind Gael Force, fourth boat for boat and correcting to first overall.


            YACHT           TYPE   Skipper            PHRF  Elapsed            Corrected


1          SeTherin           Catalina 22       Magner,273     87.23   68.89


2          Sassy Lassie     Newport28      Burnham,162    75.85   69.25


3          Sanibel Pearson            Keeler,199       82.48   71.58


4          Gael Force       C&C 24           Harren,218       85.03   71.97


5          Good Goose    P Triton            Richardson,249            90.35   73.50


6          Blue Lite           Cal 25  Giulini,225        98.47   82.59


7          Nell      Bristol 32         Gleason,247     400      DNS


8          Tumult 2           Ericson 30-1    Litke,215         400      DNS


9          Raggedy Ann    Ericson 25        Bonola,234      500      DNF


Wear optimism daily - like a life preserver on a stormy sea.

-   The Curmudgeon’s Counsel

Date: 07/31/2002 Log Entry: Race
Distance: 4.0 Weather: SW 10-12 Current: ebb 1636 at Ram
Course: s/f-D/M-s/f -2(p) Crew: Brian, Bob, Tracy & RW

MRMSA Wed Night-Summer Series - Race 4


The hardy crew of SeTherin enjoyed another Wednesday Night escapade yesterday. It must be vacation time as only five boats showed up for our class, and only 52 in the fleet. With the R/C calling winds 10 to 12 at 255 degrees, another course to the Drop/Mark beyond Sea Flower was set for two laps, 4 nm. Our start went as planned, crossing with reasonable speed on the horn; we then bailed on to port at the first opportunity for Horseshoe Reef and current relief.


It was evident, that this strategy paid off as we tacked back out on starboard to clear Horseshoe and converged with Sassy Lassie forcing them to tack. This is one of the few times we have crossed paths with Sassy Lassie this late in the game. After forcing their tack, we made our first mistake, which had multiple consequences.

1- We should have continued out with Sassy Lassie covering her. 2- I should have remembered that with the ebb we get a push to the south coming out of the down current side of Horseshoe. 3- We failed to realize we were on a significant lifted tack for D/M.  We probably did Sassy Lassie a favor forcing their tack. 4- There was significant current on our nose as we passed Horseshoe. Tacking port to sail west of Horseshoe then towards shore is worthwhile only if our goal were Vixen or Black Ledge.  The wind went light and headed us. Realizing (finally) the dying wind was local in nature; we tacked out for the mark and laid it with one more series of tacks.  


Rounding the mark in good shape, there was a short delay on the set due to an entanglement in the bag of the spinnaker halyard with the sheets, which Bob quickly sorted out. We will use the old spinnaker bag until I get the new one modified accordingly.  Shortly after the rounding and bearaway set, we held our own and possibly gained some. Swinging the main across for our long jibe on port, Tracy had thoughts of swimming, though stayed with the boat after some friendly persuasion from Bob. Sensing the next downwind leg would favor a jibe-set; we opted for a leeward douse at the mark.  The douse and rounding were excellent. This time we tacked out with favorable current east of Horseshoe and made the windward mark with only three tacks versus the six on the first windward leg. The first windward leg consumed 33 minutes, yet only 21 minutes for the second. With a jibe-set at the mark, we had a great run to the finish gaining slightly on Sanibel, Sassy Lassie and Gael Force ahead.  Thanks go to Brian for the excellent work on the foredeck and to Bob & Tracy for all the mid-ship tasks.


A Drop/Mark course against the ebb (where the windward leg is against the current), it is very difficult for us to place well.  On a typical windward/leeward course, the distance covered in the upwind portion will be approximately 141% of the rhumb line between the marks, whereas the maximum of downwind leg rarely exceeds 110% of the rhumb distance.  As everyone is aware, the current has a greater impact on our boat speed percentage wise than our competition. The deficit to windward cannot be overcome. Reverse the current situation for entirely different outcome. It would have taken a four minute and 43 second faster elapsed time to put into second place.


Boat     Type    Skipper            PHRF  E Time C Time Class    Fleet    


1-Sanibel-Wanderer30                         Keeler, 199      72.85   63.22  


2-SassyLassie-Newport28                   Burnham,162    72.20   65.91  


3-SeTherin-Catalina22             Magner, 273    88.15   69.62  


4-GaeForce-C&C24               Harren, 218      83.25   70.46  


5-BlueLite-Cal25                                 Giulini,225        100.07 83.93
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