June 15, 2018

2018 HHSA Summer Regatta

I own a 1995 S2 7.9 Sailboat named Aurora. Here's a summary of the 2018 HHSA Summer Regatta in the Chesapeake Bay that we sailed in last Sunday.

Despite the lack of wind, we still had blast. Thanks Cindy, Ben, and Dad for coming out!

The format of the Summer Regatta is a little different than the Wednesday night races. The course is very simple. The same line is used for start and finish. After starting, you sail upwind to the first mark, sail around the first mark to port and back to the finish. In addition to the start line and the first mark, there's also an orange barrel shaped float that you must stay to port when outbound to the first mark; and you must stay to starboard on the return to the finish.

The wind was very, very light. In fact, even though we were only about 300 feet to leeward of the start line, we had to quickly motor to the windward before our start sequence!

We slightly underestimated the length of the line and so we ended up having to tack to port right before the gun. We had to duck behind another boat and then quickly tack and we were back on track.

About 10 minutes after the start, the wind seemed to die completely. Dad made the risky call to tack to port. After getting stuck in irons for a while, we were finally over on port tack.

And there we sat. No wind. Things didn't look good!

But then, the wind picked up just slightly. It turned out that we had made a really good decision and we were way out in first place!

In fact, we were in first place (out of 3) the whole race.

But then, just as we were 500 feet from the finish, the wind completely died. We sat there, so close to first that we could taste it!

Unfortunately, the race was canceled due to lack of wind.

The rule for the summer regatta is that if non of the boats in a class can cross the finish before 75 minutes, the race is abandoned.

So close. So. close.

Tags: sailing hobbies