Florida Masters

2018 Florida Masters: Sunday

Sunday saw the conditions lay down a bit from the winds we saw Saturday and we were back out on the ocean sailing under overcast skies and 10-15 knot winds in rather large and lumpy swells.  I made it out to the race course, but felt absolutely awful out there as we waited to get racing started. After being so uncomfortable out there I left before the first race and would get an early start on the trip back home.  I would later figure out that the breakfast bars I had been eating hadn’t been agreeing with me and had actually been making me feel bad all weekend. Make that a lesson for next time.

Even though I didn’t get as much sailing as I might have wanted, it was still nice to enjoy some warm weather, see some old friends and get away for a bit. I am looking forward to more sailing in a few months when it warms up in VA.

PICTURES | REGATTA WEBSITE | RESULTS

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2018 Florida Masters: Saturday

After postponing on shore in what was looking to be some gnarly winds, the race committee took everyone out to the harbor for some short course racing in an alternate format.  I made the decision to bail on the day and jump on the committee boat for a front row seat. The alternate format meant todays races only counted as one race in the regatta.  In the end it wasn’t as bad as it felt on land or was predicted and I was a bit bummed to skip sailing it.

PICTURES | REGATTA WEBSITE | RESULTS

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2018 Florida Masters: Friday

The first day of the Florida Masters was a nice one with temps in the 70s, partly cloudy skies and 86 boats in two fleets. We sailed outside in the ocean. The wind started around 7 or 8 out of the WNW and shifted around to NNE and built to 11-13.  We got in 3 races for both fleets with the radials starting under the prep flag and the standards starting under U-flag after general recalling twice each of the 3 races.

In the first race it was lighter and a little lumpier and I picked the wrong side of the course on the first beat and found myself pretty deep at the first mark.  By the second leg the wind had shifted much more north making it a parade upwind and down.  I topped it off by hitting the same leeward mark both times I went around it and settled for 21st place finish.

After moving the course west and orienting it with the wind out of the North we got our 2nd race started.  I was mid-line and had a great start and legged out to the left.  I got to the layline and sailed right in to the mark and found myself first around.  I lost a couple boats on both downwind legs and settled for an 8.

For the 3rd race I started closer to the pin and had to pinch above a few boats barely laying it.  I stayed to the left of the course and by now the wind was 11-13 – requiring some sitting out and occasional hiking.  I was making the boat move well upwind and even started figuring out how to work the waves downwind so I didn’t loose boats.  I finished 5th and after 3 races I’m first Apprentice Master and 14th overall in the Radial fleet.

PICTURES | REGATTA WEBSITE | RESULTS

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2018 Florida Masters: Thursday

The trip to West Palm Beach went pretty smoothly for a 850mi journey with only 1 brief slowdown for construction traffic.  I spent the night in Jacksonville Florida and finished the trip this morning arriving at Palm Beach Sailing Club around 12:30.

The forecast for this week is going to be for quite a bit of wind on two of the days.  Having not sailed much in the last year and not at all since October, I’ve opted to join the radial fleet this weekend.

After unpacking I went out to practice in 10-11 knots out of the east, mostly sunny skies and temperatures in the low 70s.

I got out into the bay and the wind current was ripping, so I sailed around the harbor and got used to the Radial again. In the distance I spotted Rambler 88 and sailed by it.

The boats were put away, I went for a run and ready to camp out at the club and go racing tomorrow in a 30+ boat Radial fleet.

PICTURES | REGATTA WEBSITE

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2017 Florida Masters: Friday

I’ve arrived in West Palm Beach for my first Laser Masters Regatta.  I finally qualify (35 years old) and I am looking forward to the next 2 days of sailing at Palm Beach Sailing Club followed by a day off and another 2 days of sailing the Masters Midweek Madness regatta at Sarasota Sailing Squadron.

It took about 13 1/2 hours of driving to get here from Richmond having left late yesterday afternoon and spent the night in Manning SC.  Palm Beach Sailing Club is located on the sound just a short sail from an inlet and the racing area will be out on the bay.  They have beach and ramp launching with a small dock and a clubhouse with a big pavillion.  I met up with some familiar NJ and MD friends and also ran into some far-flung sailors I’ve met at various regattas.

Racing starts tomorrow with temperatures in the high 70s and winds 10-14 out of the east.  Can’t wait!

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