Sunday, August 28, 2005

WNR - Series III - Race 4

Crew: Glen, Brian P., Pat
Competitors: 247, 550, 484

With 8-10kts from the north, we started 5 lengths off the line (time
to shoot the helmsman) and under jib while Pat finished setting up the
foredeck. Towney, along with Harry & TC, started at the pin end.
With the tide slack, we chose the boat-third and I think we did well
with the better reaching angle it gave us to the channel marker. Soon
we had the chute up with Pat flying. At the channel marker we had
made up our starting deficit and were right behind Harry, slightly to
leeward and two or three lengths behind Towney and TC. Held up by
Harry, I decided to go low and got lucky to blast through his shadow
as a wake collapsed his chute and he slowed. Coming up to course we
held the chute a bit longer than the others and did an ok douse. Pat
went below to repack the chute in anticipation of flying it into the
harbor while Brian and I worked our way to the "windward" mark, close

After Brian kept me in-line by pointing out that taking the bow
through the wind was technically called tacking, not gybing as I'd
thoughtfully declared, we rounded the mark nine lengths behind Towney
and two behind TC. This time close reaching on starboard back to the
channel marker we held mostly static, pulling away slightly from

Coming close-hauled after clearing the channel mark headed for the red
nun, though close to fetching, we finally got a chance to play upwind.
We got a good shift and tacked out first. Towney followed quickly
and TC a minute or two later. It paid off as we crossed TC by a
couple lengths and gained a few on Towney. Towney played
conservatively and overstood a few lengths to lock-in the mark. I'd
guess we were 6 lengths behind him at the nun.

Though ready, we delayed hoisting the spinnaker while watching boats
both ahead and behind struggle to carry it. (Looking back maybe we
should have thrown it up right away to see what we could get. Though
I'm sure Towney would have followed suit directly and I don't think we
could have caught them at this point.) Towney finally popped the
chute nearing the green can and we followed, albeit a bit more slowly;
first trying to hoist one of the clews to the masthead and then
lowering it for Pat to, impressively, quickly correct on deck.

We slowly ran a straight shot through the harbor and finished three
minutes behind Towney. A second ties us with Towney for the series.

Pat did a great job on foredeck and Brian was awesome doing
*everything* else. Thanks guys!

Also, Ginny and John, with two guests, took Morning Light out to watch
the festivities. Thank you for the mobile cheering section! I'd like
to see the pictures.


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