Lake Champlain Open

Sailing Event Log: Fleet Racing- FJs

Event: Lake Champlain Open
Date:Sept 18, 2010
Skipper/Crew:
Course: W4
A Division Will Hutchings/Reeves Bright
B Division James Altreuder, Katherine Hitchner
Conditions: Sat: 12-16 knots, steep chop, puffy, geographic left shift
Sun: 2-6 knots, flat water, steady breeze, subtle but crucial puffs

Boat Handling / Speed
Although sailing an FJ in steep chop felt terrible, we were really fast relative to the other
boats. Made sure to keep weight back and hike really hard going upwind. Downwind,
we were really fast because we were good at surfing the waves and keeping the boat
stable. On sunday with less wind, we had pretty good speed upwind by sailing with the
slightest leeward heel and not overtrimming the main. Downwind in the light air was a
gybing match. Gybes were really fast, but we always had a tactical reason to gybe.

Done well:
.
Starting: Only two bad starts. Started at the pin, middle pin, or the middle for
every start.
.
Going fast and keeping clean air
.
Not fouling (only fouled once)
.
Beating boats in close tactical situations. Eg.) On downwinds when we didn’t
have much risk of losing boats behind us, we vigorously attacked the closest boat
in front of us until we were ahead of them.
.
Hitting the layline

Improvements:
.
When there is a persistent/geographic shift, don’t try to be conservative because
we always lost a boat or two from behind because they slammed the corner. Be
more aggressive and more confident in the conditions, especially if a certain shift
comes through more than 70 percent of the time.
.
Don’t drive up to UVM morning of the regatta and don’t stay at a place that had
plans to throw a raging party.
.
Be less indecisive.
.
Be more clutch.

General Lessons learned:
.
Study/Learn the conditions to the point where nothing would surprise you.
.
Don’t try to win the pin when the pin is massively favored, and all the other egos
on the racecourse are also trying to win the pin. It doesn’t go over well. Start on
their hips and pin them out, for they will inevitably slow each other down after the
start because they will be bunched together.

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