We had a gorgeous night aboard Mike’s new to him j105 Purple Wahoos to sail Fishing Bay Yacht Club’s Moonlight Race on June 15. Mike wasn’t able to sail so Clark, Scott, Jenny and I sailed the boat along with two kids. The race was set to start at 7:30 at night and the wind was forecast to pick up overnight and so the RC picked the shorter 14 mile course for all 6 boats sailing. We were in the PHRF-A class against J109 Afterthought. Purple Wahoos is a shoal draft wheel driven J105.
The RC got the race started about 15 minutes late. That was enough time for us to sail over to what would be the finishing mark and get a ping on it allowing us to find it later in the dark. The start was downwind- we approached at the pin and set the chute just after crossing the line. The rest of the legs would end up being somewhere between upwind and reaching. I trimmed jib, navigated, did pit and drove half of a leg.
We had a great race and managed to correct to 1st in our fleet and 2nd overall.
Two regattas down this weekend and the 3rd (of 4) would be FBYC’s Moonlight Regatta sailing aboard Double Eagle. It’s rare that I’m running the pointy end of the boat – but what better than to do it in the dark! Sam, Mark, Mayo, Holly, Melissa, Mary Paige, Katie and Mark(2) all made a great team and made for a great night.
For the first time in my memory we were sent on the longer A course and we were able to correct over all of the other boats sailing that course. The cloudy conditions and a moon that didn’t rise until we were back ashore didn’t make for great picture taking so these will have to suffice.
Having not planned on being in Deltaville this weekend I was a late add to Wavelength for the Moonlight Regatta following my Laser sail in the afternoon. The weather was perfect for a night race – comfortable temperatures, clear skies and 12-19 knots of wind out of the north east.
We got a pretty reasonable start and were 2nd around the top mark behind Double Eagle. On the 2nd leg out to mark E, Double Eagle went pretty low and allowed us to slip by while the Tartan 40 Nereid just waterlined us in the chop and was half a length ahead of us to leeward at E. For some strange reason Nereid went below the mark, we didn’t, but we couldn’t turn right to go to G because they were there. Eventually it was sorted out and Nereid went back to re-round while we led the fleet to G only to be overrun by Double Eagle once they caught up. Below is a photo of Nereid (right) going back to the mark, while Double Eagle tracks us down.
From G to J was a close reach up into the Rappahannock River with the current coming right on our nose. I drove about a mile and a half of the leg before we turned to go back to the Piankatank. We put the chute up just before F and gybed around it. We had a bit of a trouble with the jibe before we got settled to head for the finish. About halfway down the leg to the finish our topping lift broke. We took down the spinnaker and sailed bare-headed while we got the genoa sorted and hoisted. We came so close to winning the A fleet… Double Eagle corrected to 34 seconds ahead of us leaving us in 2nd overall.
Below is the course. The marks as sailed are labeled Moon Start-Moon-E-G-J-B(finish). The dotted red line is the actual course we sailed.
I started the day at Hampton Yacht Club where a team from Fishing Bay Yacht Club was invited to a scrimmage Team Racing Sonars. We started with a quick recap/overview/planning in a classroom and then the team of 11 FBYC sailors were split into 3 boats for our team and Hampton took the other 3 boats. We spent a couple hours doing drills and practicing team race maneuvers against the Hampton team. The wind was in the low to mid teens which made boat handling a little more challenging, particularly for the FBYC sailors who hadn’t had a lot of time together nor a lot of time in Sonars. But we still were able to put on a good showing and I think it was a very successful scrimmage for both teams. A big thank you to Gary Bodie and Hampton Yacht Club for having us!
Immediately after getting off the water in Hampton, I got on the road to Deltaville to sail Fishing Bay Yacht Club‘s Moonlight Regatta on Wavelength. The start was delayed 30 minutes while some weather approached the area, but never really came near us. Out on the water we had beautiful sailing conditions with mostly clear skies and a steady 12-15 out of the south. None of the overcast and occasional rain we had seen in Hampton earlier in the day.
We started at 8pm and sailed out of the Piankatank with the sun setting behind us just a short time later. I grabbed this shot of Mad Hatter just behind us passing in front of the sunset. Just goes to show that the best pictures don’t necessarily come from the best camera, but from the camera you’ve got. This was a 2-take photo taken with the iphone. Here’s an alternate version of it on Instagram.
The race went pretty well and we had a good group aboard for sailing at night. I was jib grinder for the first 3 legs, spin trimmer downwind, and drove the last 2 legs upwind. We finished around 10:30. While we didn’t make the podium, the ice cream smothered in rum after racing was reward enough.
Results | More photos from today starting here.
This photo is from the 2010 Moonlight Regatta at FBYC last Saturday night. It shows the sun setting on the Rappahannock River as the PHRF A fleet sails east to our second mark. It was taken from aboard the lead boat Double Eagle.