Sunday, November 15, 2015

Week 4 at Barrington

Bill Brangiforte finds himself with unfamiliar competition, Bernadette Levesque and John Houstle
Once again the weather cooperated at Barrington as 14 skippers took to the water under nearly perfect conditions.  There was a strong ebb tide current running perpendicular to the wind, forcing everyone to alter their tactics to make sure that the current didn't push them where they didn't want to be.

The pin end and startboard tack starts were favored all day, but the current forced everyone to tack almost immediately to avoid overstanding the mark due to the current.  The first race started with about 12 knots of breeze, but dies as the afternoon wore on, and by the last race, there was almost not enough wind to overcome the current.

Racing was close all day, with the B fleet sailors finishing close to the A fleet all day.  Andy David, Bill Brangiforte and Corey Charles, who had a stellar afternoon, took the top 3 spots in the A fleet, while Erin Abbot broke the MYC stranglehold on the B fleet by spending most of the day with the A sailors.  Marta Chlus and Bernadette Levesque rounded out the finishers in the B fleet.  Results will be posted on the Barrington Yacht Club web site as soon as they are available.

Racing continues next week, same boat time, same boat station.

Monday, November 9, 2015

MYC Awards Plus Week 3 at Barrington

Bill Brangiforte goes over the Jens Rig with MYC 2015 Sunfish Champion Marta Chlus

Marta Chlus took home just about every conceivable piece of Sunfish racing hardware at the Massapoag Annual banquet.  She took home the Most Improved Sailor award, and as if to prove how much she improved, she took home the 2015 MYC Sunfish championship.  Just to rub things in, she took the top prize in the club raffle too! Not a bad haul for a new Sunfish sailor.

She gets to defend her championship in a slightly revamped MYC Sunfish Series next year.  To encourage MYC members to get out on the water more,  we are working on ways to include MYC member results from the two Regionals Championships (Barrington and Wequaquet), the North Americans as part of the summer series.  We will post more details as they are worked out.

Meanwhile, week 3 at Barrington saw a lot of close races and a surprisingly large number of capsizes. Three of MYC's contingent of four went over, as did a few other of the 13 skippers on (or IN) the water.  John Houstle mentioned that he saw a weather prediction for 13 knots.  He was right.  The wind blew 13, For a second. As it was going from 0 to 20. Or back to 0. Then again, maybe that's why there were so many capsizes.

Those who weren't done in by the wind were done in by the current.  Almost every race had someone over early or hitting a mark.  For a while it seemed as if you could win just by making the fewest mistakes.  Bill Brangiforte snagged 2 firsts and 3 seconds on his way to taking the day, followed by Scott Greenbaum and John Coen. For the second week in a row, MYC ruled the B fleet, taking the top 4 spots.  Bernadette Levesque, Marta Chlus, Mark Stoughton and John Houstle took the first 4 spots respectively. Bernadette, Marta and John did it in spite of each of them capsizing.  Mark stayed dry, but made up for it by being over early 4 times.

Racing continues next week.  The water is still warm, and so is the air when the sun is out, so there's no excuse for missing the races.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Gentle 20 Knot Zephyrs

Cory Charles getting ready to go out while the boats sails snap in the wafting gales

Can't the weather settle on a happy medium?  Last week brought howling 6 knot gales, this week brought gentle 20 knot zephyrs.  Even that didn't deter the 16 sailors who ventured out onto the river or the 11 who survived all 6 races this week.  Five people were forced to go in early due to frequent capsizes and breakdowns of various boat and body parts.

Those who were lucky enough to survive all 6 races got in some good heavy air sailing in a gusty south-southwest wind that the National Weather Service tells us ranged from 17-23 miles per hour and a strong outgoing current.  Starts were a mixture of aggression and caution, and PRO Frank Hearn, believes that we set a club record for general recalls, as everyone tried to either keep the wind from blowing them backward or keep the current from pushing them over the line.

The fleet stuck pretty well together most of the day, with frequent traffic jams at the marks.  Almost nobody finished out of the running all day, which is a testament to everyone's boating skills.

The last race of the day found a breeze that had lightened considerably, and the sailors who went to the left shore to get out of the current found themselves nearly stranded as those who braved the current to take advantage of the dying wind in the middle of the river made out like bandits.

Scott Greenbaum took 4 firsts in the 6 races to carry the day, followed by Bill Brangiforte and Bill Shaw.  The Massapoag Contingent ruled the B fleet. Bernadette Levesque, Mark Stoughton and John Houstle finished 1-2-3 there this week.  We will post a link to the full results here as soon as they are up on the BYC web site. Racing continues next week.  We had 15 boats the first week, 16 the second, can we make 17 or better for the third?