ONE CLOSE RACE
Tuesday August 12,2014
Another great night for sailing with plenty of wind coming from the northwest. It was good to see Iris back out after a couple of weeks off. Diver Down, Aeolian, Pacific Spirit and Katrina were also out for the fun. Since we had used Course 1 the last two weeks, we decided to mix it up a bit and used course 2: Start, Wharf, Mile, Gov, finish. On Pair A Dice we saw more wind on the inside and decided to start off on port tack. We were a little late to the start and had to duck Diver Down who started on starboard tack with Pacific Spirit. Aeolian and Iris went inside with us. When the outside boats and inside boats merged at wharf, it was a pretty even draw. Pair a Dice rounded just ahead of Pacific Spirit and Diver Down followed closely by Aeolian. The same order was followed around Mile, though Pacific spirit had closed the gap on us and was right on our stern. The reach to Gov was very exciting with Pacific Spirit first trying to pass us to windward, then to leeward. The boats were so close we could have exchanged drinks with each other! Sailing Pair A Dice was barely able to break the overlap at the 3 boat zone and Pacific Spirit swung down to take our stern. Right after rounding Gov, Pacific Spirit pulled a brilliant tactical move and swung very high to pass us to windward effectively stealing or wind. We attempted a similar move, but were unable to effectively steal their wind. It was a drag race to the finish mark with Aeolian closing the gap and establishing overlap at the start/finish mark. The order at the finish was Pacific Spirit, Aeolian, Pair A Dice, Diver Down, Iris and Katrina. I guess it was even exciting to the spectators on Chardonnay as they shadowed us at the finish.
When approaching a mark, the three boat zone is a critical time. If planned and played correctly, you can break the overlap and have a huge advantage when rounding the mark. Pair a Dice pulled this off when we rounded Gov, but we were slow defending our position. We thought we could set a pole for an advantage, but it was not effective. While we were “playing with our toy” (whisker pole) Pacific Spirit sailed right over us, a great move on their part. We love these tight races!
Diana of Pacific Spirit sent me their recap of the race as follows: