|Great Pumpkin Regatta
Hosted by Richmond YC
Oct. 27 & 28, 2007
Report filed by Jason Crowson. See below for final scores.
The racing on Saturday began as a normal winter time setting, with little to no breeze coming from anywhere between the North and Eastern directions. The race committee did the right thing by postponing the racing until the solid westerly filled in, which was right on schedule at around 1 PM.
Race 1 Ė With the starting line lengthened for the 30 boat Moore 24 fleet, there was plenty of space for our little fleet. So much so that they threw in the Cal 20 and Santana 22 fleets. It didnít cause too much pain as we hardly saw them after the start. We started about mid line with Fusion and IníNíOut starting to leeward of us. After a minute or so, IníNíOut managed to pinch Fusion out and they were forced to tac away. We carried on a bit more, covering IníNíOut until they looked like they were going to tack. We covered them to the top mark with Fusion managing to get in front of IníNíOut at some point. The finish remained the same with Sea Bear taking the gun, Fusion in second, IníNíOut in third and Giddy Up in fourth.
Race 2 Ė The wind shifted in the pre-start period making a jibe set a must at the top mark. So we began moving the kite around without paying too much attention to the starting line. With the ebb tide building we found ourselves well over the line with only a minute to go. We tried to work our way down before the gun, but when the over early flag was raised we were pretty sure it was us. It took us a minute or so to get back to the line as the rest of the fleet took off up the course. With the wind shift, and no mark changes, it was a drag race and we had given everyone a minute head start. We made some ground back with the jibe set at the top mark, but not enough. As we rounded the leeward mark, it was a single tack leg to the finish. Fusion was way out in front, with Giddy Up taking a second, IníNíOut locking in third, and Sea Bear bringing in the rear.
Race 3 Ė We knew at this point that the ebb tide was really kicking (5 plus knots) so we went into ultra conservative mode and stayed a boat length or two below the line with 10 seconds to go. Both Fusion and IníNíOut looked to be over early to us, but it was only Fusion in the end. They waited a good 15-30 seconds before heading back to make sure they had a lot of ebb tide to fight, and a considerable head start for the rest of us. IníNíOut was the first boat to the top mark with Sea Bear about 3 or 4 boat lengths behind, and Giddy up close behind. We were able to set a little quicker and jibe right away, making up some ground on IníNíOut. There was not much breeze but plenty of current, so about a minute after rounding the top mark we had only made maybe a hundred yards back down towards the leeward mark. By the time we got down to the leeward mark, we had managed to get ahead of IníNíOut and Giddy up was close behind them. Then it got really light and we were barely making way on the mark. We actually raised the genoa, and then took it back down to keep the kite pulling. We went about a boat length past the mark before we put the Genoa back up and began to try to turn around the mark. We only missed it by a few inches, but in the process got swept back towards the hole we just managed to sail out of. This opened the door for IníNíOut as they rounded the mark and stayed on port tack going out to the right where the breeze was beginning to fill in. Very smart move on their part. As we tried to get some sort of steerage for several minutes, we could only watch as IníNíOut took the gun for the third and final race. We covered Giddy Up, while Fusion had the pleasure of bringing up the rear in this race.
All in all, this was some very fun and close racing in great wind and weather conditions. The current really made thing interesting and kept all of us on our toes. I hope we can make this a tradition and get more boats to come out for some fun sailing on the bay.