Spring Keel

Spring sailing at the San Francisco city front is always a challenge. Relatively light winds (for us) and majorly big currents (thank you snow melt) make for unusual courses and precarious reaches. The J24’s were lucky in that we were able to finish all four races. Some of the other fleets were not so fortunate. Hats off to the St. Francis race committee for being able to get all the races off with square lines.
It was exciting to see the familiar J24 crews coming out to play. Little Wing is back from sabbatical and made a splash, applying for both the wanker of the year award as well as the sportsmanship award. They called a foul on themselves for cannonballing their crew around a little too much. Welcome back guys and ladies.
The first start on Saturday was the closest. The video shows us all nicely lined up. Unfortunately triple threat Woof had to do a triple start due to a horrendous current pushing them OCS by inches. The windward mark saw the fleet rounding very close together. The starboard rounding threw off the crew of On Belay and so the rest of the fleet was able to squeeze in front. The first leeward rounding was close again. Downtown Uproar made a brilliant shoot to windward followed by a slam dunk tack to close the door on On Belay. The finishing leg saw a few lead changes due to wind shifts and some sloppy tacks and the finish was very close indeed.
The second race was a barrel of laughs. Little Wing was not prepared for a port rounding and was stuck waiting for two boats to pass them so they could gybe and set the chute. The conversation went somthing like this: “Sorry, I’m not trying to be a jerk, I just need to get over there” “Please feel free to take our transom” was the reply from one boat, “get outta the way” from the other. Meanwhile Downtown Uproar headed downtown and never gave up the lead. Shut Up and Drive was sporting their secret weapon for this regatta: Ned “the professor” Walker as tactician. For a guy who’s moved his boat to the cape he’s having an awfully big impact on the J24 fleet. Post race it was declared that the professor as tactician barks at the driver, and then when he takes the helm himself he still barks at the driver. Equal opportunity barker.
The funniest part of the weekend was that only one boat realized that the course had been shortened and we had been finished at the leeward gate. So the epic upwind battle ended up in the vicinity of the windward mark with boats looking around desperately for a finish line. Unwilling to give up and go home we almost went out the Golden Gate in search of a finish.
Mystery Boat “Red Stripe” remained a mystery the entire weekend but it was agreed we all approve of the boat name. So they’re winners in our book.
The rain came down on Sunday and a Southeasterly puffy flukey wind came with it. For those of us who mustered the energy/were crazy enough to come out it was a very frustrating day. Lots of wind holes to get stuck in which meant getting flushed out to the ocean. On Belay had thrown tons of cash at the problem and was sporting brand new sails. It certainly gave them the edge on the day.
Looking forward to a fun season. Thanks for coming out to play.
Results, until we get this website working correctly, are here.

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