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Old 03-27-2012
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Re: I had a great sail today.

Faster, it was the perfect (and much needed) spring weekend wasn't it?

I was out crewing on a new (to me) boat in the Smith Island race. This race circumnavigates the island in the middle of the eastern Straits of Juan De Fuca. The straits can be unpredictable this time of year and I was hoping for a blow. We got 0-15kts all day with sun and warmth and I wasn't complaining about that.

What made the sail especially great was that I was sailing with giants. The boat is a custom designed 40 footer. The owner had Bob Perry design the boat for him and the owner built it himself. She's an unassuming boat but AWESOME, stout and seaworthy beyond she is 24,000lbs double headsail, double spreader sloop, 8ft draft with a skeg rudder and modified fin. Her owner, as it turns out, has done more sailing than most of the authors of books on my shelf. He is the real deal.

For starters he looks to be about 57 years old (since I work in medicine and everybody's birthdays are printed on the chart, I have some experience guessing people's ages) but he is actually 87 years old! I think he is proof that days spent sailing are not subtracted from your life. He has rounded the horn, singlhanded the pacific (a dozen times) done 20something Vic-mauis, circumnavigated South America, pitchpoled the boat and ripped the cabin off, topped out her speed over the water at 19.4knots in a 40kt blow, been at sea through 3 hurricanes with her etc etc etc.... He didn't say much but the rest of the crew did the bragging for him.

As for the race, there were a few amatures about that would screw up simple winch-work on tacks, but that didn't seem to bother anyone. It was a pretty low-key crew. Somehow though, with minimal fuss, we just WALKED AWAY from the fleet. I couldn't quite figure out exactly what we were doing so right but we even crossed the line before the 31ft trimaran! Our esteemed captain spent a lot of time down below at the nav table after the start and that was different than most boats on other races. Still, I can't quite figure exactly what we were doing so well. I think I have much to learn from crewing on that boat.

After the wind lessened we were alternating between 2 light air spinnakers and a drifer a few times the race was over and the day was finished off with hot rum and honey.

What a great day!

MedSailor
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Last edited by MedSailor; 03-27-2012 at 11:50 AM.
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