The forecast for the Open House Regatta at Fishing Bay Yacht Club improved as we got closer to Sunday and it ended up be great sailing conditions for the few mile progressive start distance race. This race featured boats from 14′ all the way up to 48′ and they were all handicapped against each other with the slow boats starting first and having a head start over the faster boats. The first boat over the finish line wins.
I sailed a Front Runner with Alan as crew and were among the 24 boats racing under mostly cloudy skies with the wind out of the ESE at 9-11. As one of the slower boats we were about the 5th group to start and there were 2 other Front Runners racing with us. The start was across the Piankatank River near Godfrey Bay and took us east and upwind towards the mouth of the Piankatank River. Sailing down the river we stuck to the North shore near Fishing Bay and Stove point to stay out of the current.
That ended up being the key to the race as we extended out a lead and were able to get far enough ahead of the faster boats that they weren’t able to catch up. It also helped us that 1/4 of the race was close reaching rhumb line sailing where putting up a spinnaker didn’t really help any. On the final leg to the finish the J/70 E.L.E. made a pretty good charge and we edged them out finishing less than 1/2 a minute ahead.
Big thanks to Matt for letting us borrow the boat and for Alan doing a great job crewing in his second race.