The Halloween Regatta at Oakcliff was the best way to end this year of sailing. After arriving late Thursday night and helping out the regatta hosts briefly the following morning, we were able to be on the water by 1200. We stayed on the water practicing until about 530 that evening. That was one of the most effective practices that we had all year.
The following morning, we were greeted with 8-12 knots of wind and very little chop in a warm 65 degrees. We had an excellent start to the round robin with several wins throughout the morning. Racing became exciting as things progressed later in the day. Our race against Lance Fraser was rousing. We had an even pre-start and at the initial cross, we tacked right and Lance went left. Unfortunately, the left filled in and he gained the initial lead but the race was hard fought until the very end. On the last downwind leg, we were able to position ourselves in a prominent position and caught a great puff and were able to roll Lance. The race came down to the last 100 feet of the course. Unfortuantely, we were not able to secure room to finish and tried to do a fast jibe. We were just unable to get to the line first and Lance won the race.
The rest of the races throughout the day continued to be extremely exciting, but the real excitement did not start until the following day. The format for the day was established to be round robin for 5-8th and quarter finals and finals for the top four. That morning, we took the launches and went to the boats. Unfortunately, it was pouring rain and light winds. The initial call for the sails was jibs and this seemed to be a poor choice at first but as the morning progressed we saw the winds to increase. We went 2 and 1 in the second round robin and secured a sixth place finish. We were disappointed with this finish however, we are optimistic about our future and proud of the progress that we have made thus far.
It has been an excellent season of sailing. Our next events will be a few one-design regattas in Florida this winter. Along with that, we have a series of frostbiting circuits that we will be participating in so please do stay tuned!