Absolutely fabulous! This has got to be our best race ever. Not only were we hunting Top Gun right up to the finish line, but we were way ahead of our usual competitors. Sabotage ran away with the race, of course, but we were exhilarated to find ourselves in such a great position.
How did it happen? Well….here’s the whole race on video. I sped up the straight segments 5x, and left the key moments on regular speed
Basically, the boys in blue put together a whole lot of good stuff to pull this off:
- A great start
- Good pointing upwind with the #1 genoa and plenty of backstay
- Fantastic sail trim all the way
- Read the layline perfectly for the windward mark, rounded behind Legacy with Top Gun and Sabotage ahead of them
- Anticipated the wind direction perfectly so that our hoist powered us up on a perfect line to the next mark
- Gained on Legacy
- Spotted a big strong wind shift just prior to the next mark, doused early, and held our course with the genoa
- Stayed out of the worst traffic, rounded smoothly and got ourselves into a great position, by now right astern of Legacy
- Calvin and Gil worked some magic on the foredeck so that we could hoist the spinnaker again ON THE OTHER SIDE
- Sailed a lower course than Legacy to get clear air, while they got pushed up by Moruga (away from the rhumb line, and into a pack of other boats and bad air). They hoisted their spinnaker much later than us and had to sail a deeper (slower) course.
- Adjusted the spinnaker for every wind shift, while holding our line straight to the next mark
- Gained on Top Gun in this leg to the point that we were abreast them as we both doused!
- Great focus for the last upwind to the finish boat…all the while thinking they owe us time (not much but some!)
And there was a moment when I thought perhaps they would have had to dip us, but they were clear ahead.
What a fun night. Great weather, unbelievable teamwork, superb focus and a great feeling!
Let’s do it again!