Saturday morning did finally arrive however and it was sunny, and warm and ... and ... you guessed it, light. This was a big tease for those of us who have been dreaming about ripping around in a 505 all winter. Actually, to be honest, the ride out to the race course was pretty fun, sort of a broad reach in pretty good breeze. Once we were there though, it was a day full of crew gymnastics - the conditions where you, the crew, have to dive from the trapeze to the middle of the boat then leap back out on the trap while your skipper is panicking and cursing and otherwise freaking out about the boats on the other side of the course that are inevitably "fully *&^$ing planing over " there!!!""
So with about 30 seconds before the first start, there was a group of boats that bailed out hard, because they were directly downwind of the pin and getting sucked even farther by the current. After jibing around and ducking the entire fleet, there were about three boats who realized "hey this isn't so bad -" we're laying the mark!". while most everyone else was still trying to tack " onto port, these few boats that had messed up the start were looking good. At the first mark it was Breault/Hartmann (who deserve credit for being the only ones smart enough to start on port on purpose), Gleason/Smit (who deserve credit for being in the WORST position at the pin, and thereby for jibing out first), followed by Meller/Fry (who deserve credit for starting on starboard, tacking and reaching into the mark fast enough to be in third anyway). The breeze got incredibly light as this race progressed and places changed constantly.
Finally, the start of the second race brought some breeze. We were all actually planing up the first leg. It was real shifty. Neal and Dave had the start, tacked and crossed everyone. A big left shift at the end of the beat pulled Meller/Fry and Gleason/Smit out of the doghouse and into 1 - 3 with Jeff Boyd/Martin tenHove and Dyson/Fowler in 2 - 4 at the first mark respectively. Unfortunately, the breeze died in this race too till the very end where progress against the substantial current became difficult for a few minutes. Of course, immediately after deciding not to sail another light race, the biggest breeze of the day fills in and we all plane back to the beach. The ribs-chicken-beans-slaw-beer dinner was incredible, as was the general level of story telling in the parking lot. Eventually the gathering disbanded - sending groups to represent the regatta at several local bars, and of course, leaving a detachment behind to tend the lonely keg sitting in WRSC's walk- in refrigerator.
So Sunday morning it is pouring; there is much thunder and little wind. A discussion gets going in the clubhouse; same old topics - World's, getting new members, tuning, making new boats, making more boats available for new members to get into the class - but discussed with more enthusiasm - "the last " tank talk was awesome", "do we have 4, or 5 or 6 boats going to England this summer?", "World's in Hyannis! Right on!"."
Finally, everyone dragged themselves out on the water to sail in light to medium winds and steep steep waves. Painful, but good racing. Race 3 looked more like last summer's NA's with Macy Nelson/Pete Alarie, Fowler/Dyson and Meller/Fry trading off the lead several times around this short course and finishing within seconds of one another.
Race four was won by Phillips/Smith.
Race 5 was won by Nick Trotman/Dave "ironman" Kirkpatrick after they nailed the pin end start.
Of course, as soon as we set our chutes for the ride in, this wall of wind hits the course and suddenly, instead of pounding into waves upwind, the fleet is skipping across them on a tight reach back to the club. Most fun ride all weekend - it had me psyched for the next regatta as soon as it hit! In a nutshell everything about this regatta was great (except the weather). The concept of fewer regattas that EVERYONE goes to is a great one and really makes the racing very very fun. On top of it all WRSC has such an excellent attitude about dinghy racing which is what really put this event over the top. In the end it was consistency that paid (it always pays to consistently kick butt doesn't it?!) as Ali Meller and John Fry won this event followed by Neal Fowler and Dave Dyson in second and Macy Nelson/Pete Alarie in third.
The second half of the Railriders home and away series will be held at the RIISA regatta on June 17-18 in Barrington RI.
Sail Skipper/Crew R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 Total Fin. No. Pos Pos Pos Pos Pos Pts Stdg 8263 Meller/Fry 2 1 2 4 5 13.75 1 8083 Fowler/Dyson 4 2 1 11 3 20.75 2 8191 Nelson/Alarie 5 11 3 2 4 25 3 7199 Gleason/Smit 1 4 6 10 8 28.75 4 7092 Elliot/Kilgore 7 12 4 6 2 31 5 7346 Englert/Melton 6 6 5 5 12 34 6 7318 Trotman/Kirk. PMS 3 7 8 1 35.75 7 8060 Breault/Hartman 3 13 9 7 6 38 8 7879 Phillips/Smith 9 10 14 1 10 43.75 9 8085 de la Rie/John. 11 9 DSQ 3 7 47 10 8194 Kivney/Ewenson PMS 5 8 9 9 48 11 8015 Mig./Schumpert 8 14 10 13 11 56 12 8439 Dohan/Zetti 12 7 12 12 13 56 13 8264 Boyd/tenHove 10 8 DNC DNC DNC 69 14 8058 Goubault/Hill DNC DNC 13 14 14 74 15 7776 O'Brien/O'Brien DNC 15 11 15 DNC 74 16