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The 2nd day of the Laser District 8 Championship at Sayville Yacht Club started out slow with nearly an hour postponement on shore as we waited for the wind to build.  As expected it did and we had another 3 races in 8 building to 14.  With a little less chop than yesterday afternoon along with some good starts enabled me to stay with the fleet and I even led some of the last race.  The downwinds were tough for me – an area I still need to work on.

Sunday’s finishes of 5-7-5 were enough to move up to 7th overall.  Another fun trip to Sayville – nice club, well-run regatta (even without the corn on the cob) and a beautiful place to sail and camp.


No Quarter At Sayville Yacht CLub 2015

Arrived at Sayville Yacht Club Friday afternoon as a junior regatta was wrapping up with 150 sailors scattered all over the place.  I got out to practice for a little over an hour in similar conditions to the first day of racing.

On Saturday the wind slowly built throughout the morning and afternoon with a nice sea breeze and mostly sunny skies.  The course was a long one and something I hadn’t seen as much of yesterday was the seaweed that definitely slowed us down.  And having sailed so much at FBYC I realize I had gotten used to the waves and was a little thrown by the more irregular pattern here.  So it was a tough slog through 5 races today where I had some good moments and some bad ones.  It was still fun and is a very competitive fleet and I’m sitting right at mid table.

Tomorrow a little lighter winds are expected and 3 more races are scheduled.

Day 1 Results

This June while I was in Sayville for the Laser District 8 Championship I got to go watch a sunset with Ted Cremer.  Ted is doing a photo project where he takes a picture of every sunrise and every sunset this year.  We went out on the water from Sayville Yacht Club and here’s some video of our trip and Ted’s photography this year:

View more of his photos on  his Facebook page or on his website

We started with a 1 hour postponement on shore before the wind finally filled in for us to sail. From there we sailed 3 more races in 7-11 knots in very choppy conditions. I had some crummy starts and great speed upwind, but wasn’t always picking the shifts right.  In all 3 races I was back in the lead pack usually with a few boats ahead of me.  The racing was close and so were the points. There were about 5 of us going at it with any of us having a shot at 2nd place. In the end I lost the tiebreaker on the last race to Lindsay Hewett who sailed some great races today.

I had hoped for a little more boring of a ride home, but unfortunately just ahead of me on the Goethals bridge a car caught fire.  I was trapped in traffic on the bridge for an hour and thus hit even more night construction on the ride back.

All in all it was another fun trip to Sayville.  I enjoyed the racing and want to thank Ted Cremer and everyone else at Sayville Yacht Club for putting on a great regatta.

Results | Photos | Video

Day 1 of the District 8 Championship at Sayville Yacht Club and we had 13 Standard Rig Lasers for 5 races in 5-8 and sometimes fluky conditions.  I went 3-2-3-4-7 and am currently in 2nd overall.

In the first race I had the best start of the bunch at the favored boat end.  I rounded the top mark in 2nd and lost a boat on the downwind which turned to a reach as the wind shifted around.  Held on to finish 3rd.

In the second race I tried again for a boat end favored start, but I was 5 seconds early and got pushed over so I had to go back behind everyone else and restart.  As the fleet went out to the left I banged the right corner and rounded the top mark in 2nd and hung onto that for the finish.

In the 3rd race we had a port end favored line.  Ryan Schmitz wanted to port tack the fleet, but I won the pin on starboard and made him duck me and get tangled up with a bunch of boats further up the line.  Once again we traded tacks upwind and I rounded the top mark in 2nd.  Both Brian Raney and Ted Cremer had great downwind legs and passed me as the wind began to die.  I kept close to Ted at the mark rounding and managed to get more left of him on the upwind so when the wind went left I was able to get in ahead of him and behind Brian.

The 4th race started in good wind and was only 1/2 the distance as the previous 3 races.  With the shorter upwind 1st leg I wasn’t able to use my speed to get ahead of the pack and rounded in 3rd with a lot of boats right behind me.  I went right downwind while the boats that went left made out and I was 6 or 7th at the bottom mark.  Heading up to the finish I closed it up and made a couple nice tacks right at the end to beat out 2 boats by mere feet to take 4th.

The 5th race started in some wind, but a few minutes later the wind had died.  I had a terrible start, went to the wrong side of the course and spent a lot of time trying to make up ground – which was hard to do in ~3 knots of breeze.  The RC shortened course at the bottom mark and i settled for a 7th

Day 1 results are here.  I’m 14 points behind Ryan Schmitz who has put up straight bullets.  I’m 3 points ahead of Brian Raney in 3rd and 9 points ahead of Matt Doherty in 4th. All in all it was a fun day and I’m looking forward to racing tomorrow.

After driving all afternoon and sitting in evening NYC traffic I arrived at Sayville Yacht Club on Long Island for the 2012 District 8 Championship.  They hosted this same regatta last year which I attended and finished 3rd.  Sayville’s got a great club with a nice beach by the water and a great sailing area and they do a great job with their regattas.

After I got to the club this evening, Ted Cremer and I went out on the water to snap a few photos of the sunset and then we hung around a fire on the beach.  Racing starts tomorrow with 20 boats expected and 5-10 knots of breeze out of the west with a slight chance of rain.


Winning the pin at one of the starts just a few seconds before the gun.  More photos by Paul MacMenamin.

On Sunday for the second day of the Laser District 8 Championship Regatta we had 12-15 knots out of the east.  We sailed three 2-lap windward-lewards just off the beach in front of the club.  I stayed with the leaders and usually made the left side of the course work upwind.  I had good upwind speed, but usually lost a spot or two on the downwind legs.  I finished 3-4-5 on the day, good enough to hold onto 3rd place overall. (results)

2011 District 8 Championship Awards

The trip home went well considering I drained my EZPass account on the way up and had to stop at every toll booth on the way back.  When I got into Richmond the warning lights on the dash started coming on and as I pulled into my driveway the car stalled.  I’m glad to have made it home.

Laser in front of Sayville Yacht Club

The forecast for today started out looking pretty dismal.  5 knots out of the North West at 11am building to all of 8 by the middle of the afternoon and then dying.  We sailed out to the course in almost nothing.  The committee set the line and right at the time we should have started the first race the wind started swinging around to the South.  A 15-minute postponement later we had a 15-20 knot sea breeze.

My day consisted of some solid sailing with some moments of brilliance and stupidity thrown in to keep it interesting.  I was able to stay with or in the lead pack in most of the races and I was pretty happy being competitive in the 15-18 knot range whereas I traditionally haven’t been able to keep up in that.

Race 4 Start

All in all it was good racing and a fun but grueling day on the water with 5 races.  I finished 2-7-4-3-5 putting me into 3rd overall in the 14-boat fleet.  After racing we relaxed on the deck of Sayville Yacht Club, ate burgers, met some new people and listened to some live music.  I couldn’t have asked for a better day.

The regatta continues tomorrow with 3 more races planned.  I’m really hoping for just a couple knots less of wind so I can show my speed and stay up front.  Fingers crossed.

Today was my driving day to get to the District 8 Championship at Sayville Yacht Club in Long Island.  I left Richmond at 4:30 in t he morning and arrived at the club around 2:30 in the afternoon.  I lost track of how many wrong turns I made.  It took over two hours to cover 40 miles transiting New York City.

George Washington Bridge

Sayville Yacht Club is located about halfway out Long Island on the south bay near Patchogue Bay.  The forecast for tomorrow is for it to be a little on the lighter side – under 10 knots.  Sunday we should have a little more wind with the south west sea breeze blowing through.