Thursday, January 22, 2009

APS at Key West Race Week III

We went all day yesterday without a report from Warren in Key West and the Stern Scoop team was starting to get worried he might have spent a little too long in the bar the night before. Warren came through in the clutch though with a recap of days two and three. I guess he didn't fall asleep in the bar after all. Here's Warrens report:

Tuesday started out breezier than Monday. We sailed better as a team with tighter boat handling especially around the corners; but there is still room for improvement. After working especially hard to run Tangent down, we lost to them by 1 second, which goes to show everyone out there that literally every second counts in a close race. The second race was more of a drag race and despite our best efforts against Tangent, we were only able to manage a second, 51 seconds behind them.

Ian and the team on Spank Me sailed better on day two than day one pulling up a 9-7 from their previous scores.

Day 3 came and with it a forecast for dying breeze. With temperatures around 55, most of us had all our gear on, as it felt like late fall in Annapolis. The first race we got a great start and sailed well, but unfortunately with Tangent still ahead of us. As we rounded the bottom mark and dropped the spinnaker the jib halyard shackle popped open, so the call was made to drop it and bring it up on the spare halyard. Our venerable tactician Kenny got us back in phase and with some helpful shifts we came to the top mark overlapped outside Tangent.

A premature spinnaker hoist saw our spinnaker hit Tangent's spinnaker so we quickly dropped it and did our circles, but the question was did we do them quickly enough to still save our time on Tangent. We pushed very hard and with a good run we beat Tangent by 13 seconds. Mother Ocean, an O'Day 40 in our class also snuck in to beat Tangent by 1 second to assist in us in making up points on Tangent. Our trimmer Jess took the job of going up the rig to retrieve the lost halyard between races and make sure all of our sail change options were available.



Race 2 saw Tangent involved in a start line incident with the J/29 Seefest, and them spinning circles afterward. This allowed us to lead through the first mark and just barely keep them behind us on the first run. Kenny kept us in phase with the shifts and ahead of Tangent at the top mark again, but Tangent was charging fast behind us. Again Tangent was one boat length behind us at the bottom mark. We stayed on top of them to take the gun and the win by 2:24. So two wins today finds us with 10 points, one point behind Tangent with four races to go.

Standing by in Key West.

Warren

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