Austin TX

2016 Austin

After spending some time in Dallas – Jess and I headed down to Austin to explore the city and surrounding area.  One of the first things we did was visit the Hamilton Pool Preserve.  It was an overcast day, we were there early and it was pretty deserted.

We visited some other parks, walked a portion of the trail around Lady Byrd ‘lake’ and visited an exhibit of Dr. Suess art.  Those are all the things we did between eating awesome food at a variety of places around town.


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2016 Easter Laser Regatta: Sunday

Sunday at the Easter Laser Regatta started with very light winds and the race committee postponed us ashore.  Before we knew it, it was blowing stink and we were headed out on the course to start a race.  I won the boat and immediately went right while the entire rest of the fleet went left.  The name of the game was just gritting it out and when we came back together at the top mark – it didn’t seem to have mattered which way folks went.

As I rounded the top mark with about 5 or 6 boats  ahead of me, I misjudged it and hit the mark with the boom.  Given the wind speed, my conditioning, the boats ahead wiping out all over the place I knew there was no chance I was going to successfully execute a jibe in doing my 360 to exonerate myself.  Knowing it was only going to get worse on the day – I made the decision to just call it a day.  9 other boats followed.

Two races were sailed and the event rules for DNF were actually a little more favorable than Appendix A and because so many other boats bailed – I was still able to finish in 8 after not having a finish for either of the 2 races sailed.

Landing the boat at the club was a little tricky with the wind shooting right down the dock into the ramp, but after pulling up on a floating dock and de-rigging, the naked hull was easier to get out of the water without banging anything up.  Onshore I got packed up and got on the road.  I was bummed to miss the awards – glad I got to sail the Easter Laser Regatta and thanks Fred for everything you do to put this on.

Final Results | Pictures


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2016 Easter Laser Regatta: Saturday

The first day at the Easter Laser Regatta at Austin Yacht Club started out as a beautiful morning.  Granted the night before was quite cold and I woke up in the van shivering a couple times even in my sleeping bag.  After registering and a quick skippers meeting we were rigged and heading out to the course in light but definitely sailable conditions with 21 standards and 9 radials.

In the first race I had a great start, picked some shifts up the first beat and rounded the first mark in 3rd.  That rounding was a little tighter than it should have been with Doug K tacking under me and Griffin at the mark and fouling us.  I hated to have to protest him for it, but it was a clear foul and he didn’t do his turns – leading to a DSQ for Doug. The course was an 8 leg race with a windward leeward, a triangle followed by another windward leeward and a final windward leg to finish.  It was a long race, but I managed to get passed by one boat and pass another boat to stay in 3rd.

After another good start in the 2nd race I was in the top 5 or 6 around the top mark and then just worked on passing boats upwind while not loosing any downwind and managing a 4th.  The conditions continued to be very up and down requiring a lot of mode changes to keep the boat tuned.  I was also sailing with the mkII sail and getting the hang of tuning it.

By the 3rd race the wind was starting to fill in more consistently.  On two of the upwind legs I managed to miss a couple shifts and could never seem to get around the 5-10 clump of boats and wound up in 11th.

We headed ashore for lunch and returned in the afternoon to see the wind a little stronger and varying between 8 and 15 knots.   The course was a little shorter and the shifts were fewer and while I don’t feel like I sailed any worse – I could definitely tell that the rest of the fleet was sailing a lot better and making the races a lot more competitive.

In the 4th race I got behind on the first leg, but had a great 6th leg picking shifts to come back and get ahead and finished 6th.

The 5th race I found myself mostly in the trailing pack after a not so great started and managed to pick some folks off upwind.  By the last leg we had light hiking conditions and I was starting to figure out more of the modes in the mkII sail.  I made it work for me when I pinched off Jody S in a mkI sail as we went into the finish to leave me in 5th for the race and tied for 4th overall.

Following racing we all had dinner at Mexican restaurant followed by drinks on the porch at the club.  I mostly hung out with the folks from the Dallas Laser Fleet and enjoyed meeting them and feeling like a member of their group.

Photos of me by McDonald Photography here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, & here.

Day 1 Results | Pictures

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2016 Easter Laser Regatta: Friday

Friday I completed the last bit of the drive to Austin and after a work meeting during the morning in town, headed over to Austin Yacht Club for some practice ahead of the Easter Laser Regatta.  This is an event that had been on my bucket list some time and everything worked out to be able to do it this year.

Late in the afternoon, me and Forest Atkins, from the Dallas Laser Fleet, headed out for some practice.  The wind was a perfect 10-12 with mostly flat water.  This was my second day out with the MkII sail and nearly 5 months since the last Laser regatta I sailed.  And it showed.  I spent most of the first hour just remembering what the boat felt like and getting the new sail tuned correctly.  The more we sailed the more speed I found.  2 hours later we headed in and then met up with some more of the Dallas Laser Fleet members for dinner nearby.


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Christine & Chris Wedding

My first non-sailing weekend in a while – It was great to get to travel to Austin Texas and see family to celebrate Christine & Chris Wedding.

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