What we thought would be a drifter may have actually been our best race of the season!
The race was initially postponed for about 15 minutes, and then a new course was set. When the race was scheduled to start, there wasn’t any wind at all, but it quickly built, and a good race was on! Without enough time to reset the start line, it ended up almost parallel to the course, with the boat end heavily favoured.
Kiwi had us lined up perfectly for the start, right next to the boat, only a bit early. He brought us into the wind to stall us just long enough that we weren’t over early. Then we were the first across the line, to shouts of acclaim from the committee boat.
On the first crossing Top Gun was just behind us, with Battlewagon further back. Sandpiper tacked early to the Burlington shore, and we didn’t see much of them for the rest of the race. Not sure if it was poor wind on that side of the course, or the fact that they only had 3 crew that got them on this night.
We rounded just behind Top Gun and Battlewagon, and were a bit late on the hoist. The spinnaker halyard caught on the steaming light, with the pole up line behind it on the last tack before the mark. That cost some time, and then Four Hands was rather flustered trying to remember how to set the pole by himself.
We accelerated nicely downwind, getting well past Battlewagon and gaining on Top Gun, who had done a better job with their hoist. Lazy Sheet and Afterguy were playing the spinnaker like an instrument, and the hull on the water played a beautiful tune.
Ken walked us through a different douse, leaving the pole up, since we just needed to harden around the mark. It went smoothly, the foresail came out, we pulled the spinnaker under the genoa and onto the deck, rounded, and then worried about getting the pole down and out of the way.
Heading up to the line we thought we still had a shot at Top Gun but we tacked early (won’t name names, but it is the last time we listen to ____ _____), and rather than crossing at the heavily favoured pin end, we actually had to make another quick tack just to cross the line before the boat. Even with that error only 40 seconds behind Top Gun, and 5 minutes ahead of the rest of the fleet.