27 August 2009

Worlds Race Day 4: preview

Today is worlds race day 4, the last 2-race day on which to attempt to achieve our goal of finishing both races.

Yesterday was the lay-day, where all we did was relax & rest, didn't even look at the boat. Sarah and I planned to head out over the Golden Gate bridge & see some natural beauty, etc., so long as it wasn't windy & it was warm.

However, the day was a lot like our sailing days: we got around the corner from where we are staying and clutch failed on the 20-year old Jeep we are borrowing. Can't blame the truck, we've been driving it pretty hard over the hills the past 10 days. So... the first half of our day off was spent hanging out with the tow-truck driver, a very nice guy who gave us a guided tour of the city.

Eventually we rented a new car (silver Dodge Charger, now we ride in super-style), and made it out to Sausalito for a relaxed lunch, followed by a walk in the Muir Woods. Stunning redwoods, I recommend it if you ever get the chance & desire to commune with nature a bit. We topped the day off with drunks & burgers at the St. Francis with my shore team who were doing the Wednesday night racing there.

What's on for today? According to Sailflow, not too much wind until later in the day, so we will likely have problems with boat speed & will need to work hard to keep the boat moving & pointing. It actually helps to have other boats around as they 'keep us honest' & motivated.

Other issue is the start. Early on I was setting up to early & being jammed up above the gate launch, with much maneuvering to try & slip in behind. Recently I have been setting up with a good hole, but not going early enough & boats are swooping down over the top of me. I think I need to punch out more and reach down under the gate launch to achieve max speed.

We will also seek continuous improvement on downwind crew work -- we are finally getting the kite up quickly thanks to new halyard setup (5th time lucky), and I will work on steering & keeping the boat stable during hoists, jibes, and douses.

I've learned to put more board up & let off a lot more vang on the downwind to avoid being overpowered & to stay in control. But, I feel I may be doing too much of it as we are not as powered up as much of the time as I would like. Like everything else, not too much, not too little, juuuuust right!

That leaves tactics & strategy -- going the right way -- which we have undoubtedly not been paying attention to here. Maybe if it's less crazy today I will get some of the numbers to make sense.

Wish us luck!

1 comment:

kma said...

"...drunks and burgers..."???
Sounds like fun. :-)

Kevin M