Monday was the first day of racing at Key West Race Week for the J105 Lucky Dog Racing. Last night a storm rolled through the area which left some lumpy seas around the course for the first part of the day. The cloudy skies in the morning cleared as the day went on and with them went the wind.
At the race course we did some practice to be sure everything was ship shape and ready to go. We were a half a boat length late at the start with Max Power above us. We worked our way out to the middle left of the course on the first beat and were about 6th around the first mark. We held our own downwind, but had a terrible takedown and lost 10-15 boat lengths at the leeward mark.
Upwind we were fast and clawed our way back a few spots. We ended up 8th in the 1st race of the day in the 15-boat fleet.
In the second race of the day the wind and waves had subsided a bit. Travis did a great job nailing the start and we hit the line on the front row and were able to get out in clear air. We were right with Ghost, Savasana, Wasabi and Masquerade. We had good upwind boat speed and led Ghost at the first windward mark by half a boat length. On the next three legs we had clean maneuvers, good tactics and extended our lead.
On the final leg upwind to the finish, Masquerade, who was in 4~6th place rounded the leeward mark and went way left. We covered everyone else in the fleet who mostly stayed to the middle right. Masquerade hit the left corner perfectly and was lifted ahead of us by 5-8 boat lengths. We continued to gain on the boats behind, but couldn’t catch up to Masqueraded leaving us with a 2nd place finish.
A second and an 8 put us in 4th overall. Tomorrow’s forecast is for a little lighter winds which will be a bit more challenging for us.
After racing we headed back to the condos and a short time later a storm rolled through the area. We headed over to Kelley’s for the J105 party and then went out to dinner.