Crew: Scott, Chris, Xa, Nicole (friend of Chris) and Tim
Wind: 10-15kts out of the south
We had a beautiful night of sailing this week. It was great to see Brian Palmer out skippering L'Esprit in her first WNR!
We had a good solid start and quickly jumped ahead of Argo by a couple boat lengths. Our course took us almost out of R2 at the mouth of the Severn on a fairly steady reach. At one point the wind lightened, and Argo started to catch up. We eased the backstay and the jib halyard. We also eased the outhaul and fattened up the main. We went to 8 to 10" off the spreader for the jib and lo and behold, we started to move on Argo. We shifted gears! Excellent!
We took a hitch before rounding the windward mark to get out of a lot of spinnakers. We just barely crossed L'Esprit on port. (Whew!) I think it's clear that Brian has plenty of speed with that new bottom and those new sails. (Not to mention the crack crew--his parents!)
After that it we had a great spin set with Scott on the foredeck. We led the fleet in until we rounded the green can at the entrance to the harbor. We got caught behind and below a Catalina as we rounded. He came up and slowed down more quickly that we did. We were too close to shoot above him and had to plow below him. That killed our speed and Argo charged by us to windward.
We went to the docks and tacked and lucky for us, Argo had to take two tacks where they only wanted to take one. This gave us the advantage we needed as the winds were light and tacking was painfully slow. We crossed the finish line a short bit before them.
L'Esprit came in fourth (last) behind Argo and Second-2-Nun (Harry), but she didn't fly her chute, so I think it could have been quite a different finish had the been able to do so.
We had a great time and are looking forward to next week.