Join Date: Nov 2009
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Re: EYC's Solomons Invitational Race
We hit the starting line with a decent start in light air that built steadily through the night as we drove south.
Somewhere down by the Choptank River, I determined that I was overpowered with a full main and 155% genoa, so I called for a reef. My boat responds better to a reef first, then stepping down a headsail size.
We continued the rest of the race, borderline overpowered as the wind varied between 15 and 20 knots. Apparently one competitor reported gusts to 25kts, but I don't have wind instruments.
At 10pm, the current was foul, so we took to the shallows of the Eastern Shore to minimize the effect.
With wind from the SW, We only tacked twice the whole way down the bay.
When we rounded R76 off of the Patuxent River, we were sailing directly upwind, and made several tacks to get to the finish line.
We dodged a tugboat with tow on our approach to the Pax River. The current into the river was foul, so we lost some speed, but our tacking angles were very good.
We crossed the finish line over 5 hours faster than last year's race, so we finished in the dark. The wind never slackened until well after sunrise.
The Bay chop was atrocious. After the moon set around 3 or 4am, we were in near total darkness, so I had difficulty steering around the worst of the troughs and we took quite a beating.
1981 Tartan 33 #168