Day #2 (race 3) - Report by CinqueCinque (SUI 227)
Boots or shoes? Do you think we will be wet today?
So long story short, weather was definitely wet and windy :)
After a first general recall, the race committee launched a race under black flag. A massive right shift during the first upwind leg let a big part of the fleet to be over-layline. So full speed to the first mark, then pushy first downwind leg with a uncertain goal, leading to drop the spinnaker and point high to the mark.
Second windward leg and then really pushy downwind leg, with only a few of the competitors keeping the spinnaker up (us). Last upwind leg, wet, wet, wet and wiiiindy, and back home after this cool race.
A very good one for our crew, good speed, good feeling!!
And cherry on the cake, the after race " Breton buffet" party, organized by the Yacht Club Benodet, was really amazing, with specialties from Brittany, fresh beer and cider, shrimps fresh from the Guilvinec fished this afternoon, and a workshop to learn, make and eat crêpes!
Well, good racing, wonderful social event, let's carry on the championship on that way :)
Day #1 (race 1 & 2) - Report by Shaolin III (SUI 226)
The weather conditions where not very promising, with a 4-5 kts from West Southwest in the early afternoon increasing to 5-6 kts in the later afternoon. Nevertheless the fleet left the beautiful harbour of Benodet around 11.00 am in order to be on the water for the 12 o clock start.
The very efficient race committee managed to set the course in time, so that we could start the first race of the championship on time. The wind was as expected light, but more from the south as expected. The fleet started all clear on the well laid out starting line, and worked their way up to the first mark. New Moon (BAH 21) and John B (BAH 22) took the left, whilst Marie Francoise XIX (SUI 226), who won the Scandinavian Goldcup at the end of last week, took the left. We also chose to sail on the right side, but not as consequent as the Bahamians. At the end of the first leg, it was clear, that the right hand side payed of this time, but then there was the downwind, where many places have been won… and lost. We rounded the left mark of the gate, in order to retake the right hand side of the course, which seemed to be the right choice, because there were just too many boats with inside overlap. The second upwind beat was pretty much the same as the first one, with the exception, that most of the boats realised that the right-hand side was the winning side. Due to the persistent wind shift to the right, the race committee had to alter the course twice. John B could defend his leading position comfortably around the course to take the first race win of this year’s worlds in front of New Moon and Marie-Francoise XIX.
The race-committee did a good decision to postponed the second race due to very light wind shifting to the right. When the new wind around 8-10 kn established from a more left direction between 240 and 250 degrees a new start was possible, with clear start again, with an even line.
As most of the fleet went again to the right, we felt more pressure on the left side after we had to accomplish a 360-turn after a tight incident with Caracole and Pungin. However, we were able to catch up to sail consistently on the left side and where able to play the shifts around 10 to 15 degrees and rounded the first upwind mark as no 7. At downwind, pressure was also better on the left side of the course. The straight downwind on starboard was quite stable, and only few change in positions where possible, as on the second beat and downwind.
New Moon took the lead, in front of Marie-Françoise and John B in third place. We could stabilize our position on place 5.