14 August 2009

This is not an Optimist Regatta

This is not an Optimist Regatta -- and by that I am not referring to my well-known sunny personality.

There will be no yummy mummy to pack our lunch in the morning. No daddy to put the boat in the water for us. And no famous sailor to debrief us at the end of the day. Unless you count Danielle & Adam, veterans of the International One-Design fleet around the world, now based in SF... But I am bringing rum & ginger beer, with which I hope to coax tips out of some of my fellow sailors. Luckily, the 505 fleet is known for being generous & gregarious... There will be a 1-hour sail out to the race course across the San Francisco Bay, and a 1.5-2 hour sail back upwind, when it's windy at the end of the day.

There is no getting around the fact that, in the big picture, we are woefully under-prepared. We have practiced, but less than 20 times, and Bermuda in June & August is not known for its wind. We have a new boat, but we have already broken the end of the spinnaker pole. And, as for fitness, did I mention that I am recently recovered from a slipped disc? No big deal, I have a bottle of Advil & a heating pad.

Hence our first team motto is 'In over our heads'. And the second one is 'More money than sense' -- at least concerning me...

So why are we doing this?

To be honest, despite all the stress in dealing with the logistics, and the pressure of the racecourse, it all is worth it once you are planing upwind with a neutral tiller, cutting through the water. Or you turn the top mark, pop the chute, and start whooping as the boat skips down the waves, spray in the skipper's face. And who can pass up a chance to sail for 2 weeks in San Francsico Bay in 505s, the cadillac of dinghies?


Craig said...

Go for it Doug!!!! Have a blast! The rest of us are jealous!

Gonecaving said...

Best of luck Doug, hope it all goes well!