Laser District 11 Championship

2012 Laser District 11 Championship: Sunday


We sailed another 3 races on Sunday to complete the District 11 Championship.  The wind started out around 14-15 out of the north, north west and died off to about 8 by the end of the 3rd race.  It was very shifty and challenging.  I put up a 9-4-9 today to finish in 6th.  Best part of the day was on the first beat in the 2nd race when I pulled off a perfect pick move when the Schooner Woodwind crossed behind me and blanketed the entire rest of the fleet (seen above).

Results | Pictures

Here’s a picture from sailing on Saturday that was posted on SpinSheet’s website.

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2012 Laser District 11 Championship: Saturday

2012 D11 Championship Saturday on the water

We had an absolutely beautiful day in Annapolis for the first day of the Laser District 11 Championship with 33 boats.  We did 4 races in 15-18 knots with each race taking about 45 minutes.  We sailed in their area C which was just north of Tolly Point with the wind at 200-180.  I did a reasonable job keeping up with the lead pack in winds that were right at the very top if not slightly above my competitive range. Having finished 5-7-7-10 I’m in 7th and looking forward to the slightly lighter winds predicted for tomorrow.  Results.

2012 District 11 Championship Crab Feast

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Building the Laser Radial District 11 Championship Trophy

District 11 has a new perpetual trophy to honor the Laser Radial District 11 Champions.  It was built around the original Standard Laser District 11 Championship trophy and features the names of the 7 champions we’ve had so far.

Original District 11 Championship Trophy

Original District 11 Championship Trophy

The original Standard Laser District 11 Championship trophy was built in 1979 by Mike Waters using a relief of a Laser created by his wife, Jane Waters.  Over the years this trophy was lost to time and in the mid-1990’s a new Standard Laser District 11 Championship trophy was created.  The original trophy was found about 5 years ago and the champions listed on it were used to populate the new trophy going back to 1972.

The original trophy was given to me when I became District Secretary and I thought it was a shame not to put such a nice piece of art to use and to loose a valuable contribution to our District.  We’ve started to have a consistent showing of Radials at our District Championship.  I thought – why not recognize Laser Radial champions and give Radials a trophy to sail for.

trophy plans

Trophy plan

The new Laser Radial District 11 trophy was designed to use the relief in the original trophy.  Since Mike was a boat builder and used the best boat-building adhesives to affix the relief to the original board, it would have been too difficult to separate the relief from the board without breaking it.  So the new trophy had to be built around it.

The new trophy would feature the relief in the center, a plaque with the name of the trophy at the top, room for the 7 known Laser Radial District 11 Champions and room for the next 36.

Construction of the trophy began at the end of August.  First the old board was cut away around the relief.  Then mahogany boards were joined and a hole cut for the relief.

Mahogany boards cut and joined around the relief.

Next a groove was routed around the edge and a frame was added to cover the threshold between the new wood and the old board that the relief was affixed to.

Groove and frame

Then the trophy was polyurethaned and the plaques were mounted to it.

Mounting plaques

The final touch was adding the rope to complete the trophy.

Laser Radial District 11 Championship Trophy

More pictures of the trophy and the build process can be seen here.

I want to thank my father, Stan, for his help and tools.  I also want to thank Mike Waters and his wife for creating the original trophy and for the fleets and individuals who have helped fund the materials to build the trophy.

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2011 Laser District 11 Championship: Sailing World

Tim Zimmerman is a writer for Sailing World and was a competitor at the 2011 Laser District 11 Championship we hosted a few weeks ago at Fishing Bay Yacht Club and he’s written a nice blog article about his experience at the regatta:

Don’t get me wrong. The regatta itself, the District 11 Laser Championships, was not terrible. In fact, it was fantastic. Hosted by the smoothly-run, beautifully-situated, Fishing Bay Yacht Club down in Deltaville, Va., on the southern Chesapeake Bay, the regatta was blessed with excellent winds, a great crowd of sailors, and a Laser-loving chef, Alain Vincey, who cooked up a spectacular Saturday-evening dinner. Even the camping was nice.

Read the rest of the article on Sailing World’s blog.

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2011 Laser District 11 Championship: Video

Here’s my highlight film from all of the on board video I captured at the Laser District 11 Championship last weekend:

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2011 Laser District 11 Championship: Sunday

This has been an awesome weekend both as a regatta organizer and as a competitor.  The regatta ran great, we had nice weather, we got in 8 races, we had competitive fleets and David Lee and the race committee did a fantastic job with the on-the-water part of the regatta.  Everyone enjoyed Alain’s dinner and we certainly couldn’t have made the regatta work with out the help of the many club members who pitched in – THANK YOU!

As a competitor I can’t say I had been thrilled with the sailing I’ve done this year.  I was sailing really well last fall and even though I was going to big time regattas this winter, I just never put together anything more than a mediocre regatta for myself.  With this regatta I was determined to put in a respectable showing and get my game back to where it was last fall.  What better a place to do it than on my home waters.

Saturday’s racing saw 12-16 knots of wind for the day.  That’s at the upper end of the range that I’m competitive in.  I set my boat up right and hiked my butt off and managed to have all top-10 finishes except 1 in 5 races putting me into 8th in the 25-boat fleet. In that kind of wind keeping up with the tail end of the lead pack was a good showing for myself.

Start of race 2 at the pin

Saturday night we had 55 people for dinner and had a great time hanging around the club.

Sunday, the wind was right in my sweet spot for speed and out of the south.  On the first race I had a great start, picked the shifts and led at the windward mark by a boatlength or two.  It was such a thrill to be out ahead of so many great sailors. But I knew they were coming for me and I did my best to stay out ahead of them. Dan Herlihy and I traded for 1st place on the next 2 legs and on the final beat, he just picked the shifts a little better than I did to take the gun leaving me 2nd.

In Sunday’s second race I had a good start, but didn’t have the boat speed to pull ahead of the fleet.  As a result I had a tough time going where I wanted, made way too many tacks and ended up really deep at the first windward mark.  Luckily about half of the top 6 sailors were back there with me.  Through the next 4 legs we picked our way back up to the front and I dug through about 10 boats to get back to 9th.

The 3rd and final race of the day was my best race.  At the start there was a big lefty enabling Rob Overton to port tack the fleet at the pin.  I had a good start in the middle and used my boat speed to get enough of a lead and clear lanes to start picking some shifts.  At the first windward mark it was me and Rob Whittimore.  I couldn’t have written it any better to battling for the lead with a good friend and fellow club member. I led Rob by about half a boat length down to the offset.  Rob had a great run and jumped ahead of me at the downwind mark.  The race committee changed the next weather leg to the left so I immediately went left on the 2nd windward leg and caught some great shifts to pull ahead of Rob and everyone else behind.  The next two legs I felt like I had good boat speed, caught the shifts well, and covered the fleet to take the gun.  That ended up being the last race of the day and it was such a thrill to sail my best and win a race against such a great group of sailors.  That really made my weekend.

Leading the fleet in the final race

After racing we handed out awards, cleaned up and got on the road.

All in all it was a great weekend and I can’t wait to do some more Laser sailing!

Read my write-up on the District 11 Website and check out the results.  I hope to have a video up later this week and I’ll link to photos when they are available.

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2011 Laser District 11 Championship: Friday

We’re all set for the District 11 Championship this weekend at Fishing Bay Yacht Club.  I got down to the club this afternoon, got everything unloaded and met some of the out-of-towners who were trickling in.  A few of us went out for some practice.  After sailing 21 of us went out to dinner and then we hung out at the club before calling it a night.

Tomorrow we’ve got overcast skies and 10-15 out of the south east.  We should have right around 40 sailors with about 12 or so in the Radial fleet.  It’ll be some fun racing tomorrow and I’m looking forward to it.

View from the top of the mast of our practice


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2008 District 11 Championship

Deep Creek District 11 Championship

Deep Creek Sailing Association hosted a great District 11 Championship this weekend. We had 48 sailors and beautiful conditions on Deep Creek Lake. Pictures and Results.

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