By work connections that were both random unexpected, Max and I were able to go sailing in Seward this past Saturday for a couple of races.  Leaving town on Friday night I was super excited, but worked to keep my expectations down.  I wasn’t expecting the racing to be too serious, and was actually thinking snagging a couple of salmon would be the weekends real highlight.  But upon meeting Linda and the rest of the crew Saturday morning, it became clear it would be a much more competitive outing then I expected.

As we went about stripping the boat of it’d dodger, dingy, awning, while attaching the 120 Genoa, the idle chatter and small talk around the boat convinced me that everyone on board was expecting a couple of victories.   Once out on the water with our sails up we quickly went about performing a couple of practice tacks and jibes in order to get Max (who’d never previously been in sailboat race) and I up to speed with both the boat and the rest of the crew.  After some steady improvement we settled in a waited for the race to start.

The William H. Seward Yacht Club races with a handicap system, and as we were racing on the fastest boat in the fleet we were the last two start each time.  In the first race, an Olympic with a downwind finish, we started 8 minutes behind the rest of the field, but by the reaching mark we were in second place, and would have been in first with two races to go if we didn’t have to jibe around a couple of boats Purse Seining just in front of the leeward gate.  Growing up sailing on Spring Lake has meant dealing with aggressive powerboats is second nature, but having to avoid commercial fisherman in the middle of a race coarse was a personal first.  Despite having to sail around a couple of nets we won the first race with ease.  The second race, a quick windward leeward, we only spotted the fleet 3 or 4 minutes, we had some traveller issues and suffered through an auto tack, but had a safe lead halfway through the downwind leg and again won easily.  So Max’s sailboat racing career has been launched with a pair of victories, and after a little more then 5 years out of the game, I’ve been in 5 races in the span of 3 days.  Enjoy the video bellow, it’s looking like windsports are going to be the theme of the summer.

 

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