This past weekend San Diego Yacht Club hosted the first stopover of the California Dreaming Series in j22’s. This was the first event for this year for my team and I so we were a little hesitant going into the practice day concerned about how rusty we were going to be. Thankfully we had nothing to worry about. We weighed in on Friday and went out for the practice day.
Sure, the first couple sets and douses of the kite might have needed a little bit of work however we had a solid starting point. We spent a significant amount of time doing continuous sets and douses and each one became better than the last. After a little practice the team was comfortable but more importantly consistent with their hoists. We then proceeded to practice some stop n goes and tight maneuvering. This extensive practice day was extremely helpful and we showed up the next day fully prepared to race.
Saturday morning arrived and we were out there bright and early ready to race. We started our first match against San Diego Yacht Club. This race started off a little shaky but at the first mark our team had a better hoist and were able to roll over the top of them.
We then proceeded to have a great day of sailing. Our most challenging race was against Saint Francis Yacht Club which we unfortunately lost. However, during that whole race, we were not far behind. We found actually during upwind we were on average faster and higher than them. We just were not able to make as much gains as we would have liked. The Saint Francis team was sailing with four people while we only had three and we were approximately 95 pounds under the weight limit and to accompany that it was blowing the most it had all day. The average wind speed during that race was about 11.5 knots. Saturday was a fantastic day of racing and by the end of it we were tied for first.
The umpire de-brief that evening was uneventful and all sailors went home early because we were forecasted to have severe Santa Ana winds the following day. The team and I showed up the next day and unfortunately the variables needed to produce a Santa Ana were not created so we were greeted with extreme heat and no breeze. The Race committee hesitant to send us out due to how light it was decided to tow us to the race course to attempt to finish the last race of the round robin. After five hours of postponement we were towed back in with no racing occurring that day. The team ended the weekend tied for first but unfortunately, we lost the tie breakers to the Saint Francis Yacht Club Team and finished second. All in all, it was a great weekend of match racing and we are looking forward to sailing the remaining two events held respectively in San Francisco and Long Beach. The winner of this series gets an invitation to race in the Ficker Cup.