Sunday, August 25, 2013

Sat & Sun Aug 25 and 25 - Inshore Verve

What a fun weekend we had!

Not that it was easy.  It was challenging and while we didn't get it 100% right, the sailors gave great reviews of the race committee this weekend.

We had the biggest Inshore Verve in recent history:
J 70 - 19
Etchells - 12
Soling - 6
Colgate 26 - 3
J24 - 5
Shields - 4
Luders - 3

and on the B circle:
Laser - 8
Vanguard 15 - 12
Rhodes 19 - 9

Truth be told, it was the weather that made the regatta.
On Saturday winds 8 to 10 from the southeast and blessedly steady, made it seem easy to get 3 races on the A circle and a bunch on the B circle.  But that's what the sailors saw.  Sunday was shifty and although Tom Skilling predicted "gusty", the other forecasts were closer, at 6 to 12 knots.

Race Area A:
Saturday, a nervous Janet B, as Race officer, had great support from Helle and Darcy and never had a concern about the starting sequence due to a dependable timer, Karen M and a supporting cast.  Setting the course was pretty simple because the wind didn't really switch much, although we talked about it every leg.  Bob and "his women" kept things square at the top, while Rick and Joanne raced around the bottom.  An nonscientific poll said that most sailors did not want a fourth race, but it was not unanimous.  They didn't get one, so it doesn't matter.  Warm and sunny with good breeze made it a great day for sailing.

Sunday we had our first Southwester of the season.  It wasn't a blower, but about 6 to 12 over the day, with plenty of shifts.  Chicago's predominate breeze is southwest, but this season, we haven't seen it on a race day.  Hot and sunny, with the upwind view of the city.  Nice!

But shifty. 30 degrees difference between the top at the bottom.  Olaf signed on last minute, Thanks! and helped Helle keep Janet from jumping off the boat as the breeze acted like a typical southwest shifty breeze.  We worked the markset boat teams hard, demanding wind readings, even as they were moving to new locations or pulling marks,  But Bob and another set of women (Mary and Stephanie) kept up a cool conversation on the radio and never missed a mark set or a change.  All marks got in place in time, which wasn't always easy.  On the bottom, we had Rick and Joanne moving the line, squaring the gate and signalling changes.  Just two people- they had a busy day and Joanne drove most of the day.  Not bad, having joined the RC after Mac this year!

At one point the the windward markset had 220 and the signal boat had 250.  In fact, that lasted for a while. So we picked something in between and had a few changes.  We set the third race of the day as a 5 legger.

Almost unanimously, the sailors liked it - another nonscientific poll.  We stuck an extra 5 minutes between the J70s and the Etchells for all races on Sunday, which made the sequence longer, but it was appreciated by both fleets.  On Saturday, the first  few Etchells crossed into the back end of the J70 fleet.  The Etchells seem faster upwind in the lighter stuff but the J70s seem faster downwind.  Either class could start first, but with the same boats again, I would start the Etchells first.  The J70s had a bigger spread from first to last.  Something to consider- it can go either way.

Race Area B
I wasn't on this course, but short staffed, they were pressed hard because running 3 different classes on various courses makes for a merry-go-round of sailboats.  The first sequence goes off, using the "Ollie" for a dinghy start.  The Lasers want a long course, the V-15s love it short and the Rhodes add another dimension.  So the RC is starting one fleet, finishing another and monitoring winds and making changes throughout.  They got in lots of races and all the sailors I spoke with seemed very pleased.  The Race officer there was Lynn with only 2 other people on the signal boat.  I can't imagine how they did it.

Nancy A did a great job getting the scores in - emailed from the A course from Melissa. I think Lynn entered the scores from the B course.  B got in earlier, having exhausted both sailors and RC.  Saturday there was pasta dinner, and the usual Verve sponsored cocktails.  Sunday had awards at 4:30 and a very lively bar crowd that drifted out to the docks by about 7:30pm.  I can't say what happened then, but people were pretty happy.

Another successful showing of the CYC RC.  All that training and pressing people into service is worthwhile.  It was fun for me, and I think for all that helped this weekend.  Your service is very appreciated - let's do it again.

Janet B,


Janet B - my photo's too!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Sat Aug 18 -RYF on a Very Busy Saturday on the Lake!

In addition to the J111 Championships, Corinthian Match Race and the Air and Water Show, we did have RYF racing on Saturday 8/17!

Upon boarding and getting underway upon the fair ship Latham, we noticed we had an extra gear bag with a lovely tankini top.  We wondered who would be swimming.   We soon found out the boat boss of the leeward markset was planning to (and did) take a quick dip in the cool Lake Michigan waters after the first race was underway.

We had great weather - for Air and Water Show spectators; but had to AP due to very low winds.   After about a 40 minute postponement, the first race started with wind speed close to Pi.  (3.14159).

The check in process went smoothly while photos were taken of the aircraft doing tricks and acrobatics, we had 7 Etchells, 1 J-70, 4 T-10's, 1 Shields and 2 Luders.

After getting the first race started, and despite bouncy conditions that tend towards seasickness, everyone ate lunch.....chicken curry or chicken curry and no one lost their lunch!  The best part being the fudge stripe cookies.  Love those cookies from the tree house!

Winds picked up in the second race to about 5-6 knots which was great for everyone.   The PRO did hear the DRO's concern for a square course and had the finish mark reset prior to the finish for the second race.  

One lesson learned, confirm that the windward markset boat knows that there is no offset for the short mark.

Finally the quote of the day...."Never leave the wheel when it's in gear."   What happens on the RC boat stays on the RC boat.   I'll never tell.....

Thanks for a fun day on the Signal boat Nick, Janet, Amy and Stephanie!
Joanne G.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Monday, August 12 - Tall Ships Race Start

A unique opportunity to see the ships sail off to South Haven.  Don G. was the PRO and Bob J was the boat driver.  They were assisted by Todd and Lloyd setting marks, Marge and Mimi recording and Janet B doing flags (Todd did that too).  We also had some guest experts from the American Sail Training Association (ASTA), Erin and Patty, who kindly gave us some flags to add to our collection.

It was a fine end to a long weekend of the Maritime Festival, featuring 14 Tall Ships, The Grade 1 Chicago Match Cup event and unofficially, our own Verve Cup.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Saturday, August 9 - Verve Day 2 Circle B

Leftover sloppy waves and not much wind combined to foil the best attempts to get a race off on time.

Can you read the flags - postpone and abandon!  Can you read the body language?

But all was not lost and after a patient (?) waiting period, two square races were run.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Out of Order- Sunday June 8 NOOD Circle C

Sunday is tradition day at the NOOD on some circles. First tradition - the circle C team picture!

Then it was off to the race course in glassy waters. Fortunately, the breeze filled in from 140 and a start sequence was initiated but the wind was too unstable and the start was postponed. A new course of 125 at 1.5 nm and 1.25 nm was set up and all classes were able to start. There was an intentional 5 minute postponement after the T-10 start to increase the separation between that fleet and the J/105s and Beneteau 36.7s that started after them. This reduced most of the mixing between the fleets throughout the race and was well received by the fleets based on comments from a small sample of competitors.

As boats came down the run the breeze had continued to build to around 8-9 knots so all sections were extended to new yellow marks at distances of 1.75 nm and 1.5 nm, allowing for 70-75 minute races for the fleets.

For race 2, the J/111s and J/109s were started on a 120 course while the T-10s and other sections were still finishing. By the time all remaining sections had finished and ready to start, the wind had walked to 110 but the RC was locked into the 120 course the first two sections were sailing towards. The start line was reset square to the wind at 110 but the T-10s had their first and only general recall of the weekend. On the restart, the RC displayed the India flag and were able to successfully start the largest and most stressful section of the circle on their final race. The other sections also started without much incident.

The wind in race two looked left of the course from Carrier’s perspective but the spread of the boats on the beat and the run told a different story about the wind up the course. A wide spread among the boats with plenty of crossing was a great way to end a successful regatta. All were pleased that the light winds, rain and storms predicted just a few days before the event largely never materialized.

Back at the dock, there was one more tradition observed. Helle arranges a champagne toast for her circle, complete with a second team picture. Lots of compliments were spoken, all well deserved, to a true team that enjoyed each other’s company.

Erik S. written then and posted later