Twelve 5O5’s rolled up for the latest event this past weekend in Santa Cruz. The format was a race/train set up, with short courses and debriefing after the racing Saturday evening.
Saturday we managed to get something like 7 races off, in very light conditions, the marine layer never clearing the beach. We had an approximately 1/2 mile beat, run back to the leeward mark with a short beat to the finish. Even in the light winds the races were taking something like 17 minutes. Evan Diola, PRO for the weekend did a fantastic job of turning around races, with barely time for a gulp of water before we were back in the 3 minute sequence. In the light conditions racing was very tight, with no one dominating and everyone having their “moment”.
The debrief after racing was, as ever, insightful and gave us all something to think about. Primarily a good clean start and sail where the wind was!
Sunday was a completely different day, fog cleared, breeze came on and we had a classic Santa Cruz day. Again we had the same short course racing on the same course with races taking 12-13 minutes. Getting a good clean start and a good(or not) first cross was everything. Nine, yes nine races, were run by Evan and his crew on the rib. With Adam and Mike doing the most winning for the day, but Pat and Jeff being the most consistent over the day and the weekend. However racing was the tightest I have ever seen, Rob and I were involved in at least 2 dead heats on the line and I know there were many others. The short format really made it exciting and we had a ton of practice at starting, mark rounding and finishing.
Over the course of the 2 days, Adam and Mike won a bunch or races, so did Rob and I, Jeff and Howie had a bunch of 2’s and 3’s and I am sure won races, as did; Pat and Jeff, Dave(now known as Caitlyn) and Bruce and Rob and Eb. But more importantly everyone was going better and better and pushing the front of the fleet. It was really good to see Antoine and Pierre going really well, especially upwind, Brendan and Eb sailing much better. It was also good to see Nick Adamson back in a boat, steering Rich around, still to hear if they kept the rig dry or not.. It was also good to see how Chris and Ian’s hard work is now paying off and they are now really mixing it up and competing with the whole fleet. Rob and Aarron were also consistently in the mix and causing trouble wherever they went and we had the company of Mark and Mark in the Asso rigged boat. Sunday we were also joined by newcomers, Segah and Gordon in the new to them “Faster in Fog”.
A fantastic weekend of sailing, not sure I have ever done 16 races in a weekend before, brilliantly run by Evan with zero down time between races absolutely maximizing the fun. Thanks to Bruce and his co-owners for the use of the Rib as committee boat, which proved how easy it is to run good racing, 3 marks, one rib and a competent PRO!
Thanks to all for being there, next event is the Gorge Dinghy, July 24-26, followed by St Francis on August 8/9.