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Old 07-11-2012
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Distance Preps- Solomons Invitational.

I'll be doing the Eastport-Solomons Invitational again this year.

It's a drop in the bucket for offshore racers like Smack, but it's around 45 miles, overnight. A good beginner's race for a new-ish skipper like me. I did this race last year, on my Coronado 25. We had a great breeze and a full moon. It was an experience that I'll never forget.

Alas, the boat just didn't sail fast enough or point high enough to get us to the finishline before the breeze cut out in the morning, as is typical on the Chesapeake in the summer. I retired, only 1.5 miles from the finish line. Last year I had a lot of crew, way too much provisions, and personal baggage. Way too much extra weight.

This year, I'm gunning for redemption in my P30, and trying to do it smarter.

The forecast this year is for rather light breezes all night, and into the next day. I'm down to 3 or 4 crew instead of 6, and we'll be packing a lot smarter. I've got better tide and current data than I had last year. I'm cutting the handle off of everyone's toothbrush (Just kidding).
I've also got a sweet chartplotter built out of a netbook, running OpenCPN. I had my "navigator" use it during last week's Poplar Island race, to get him used to using it. He said it was very intuitive, and gave me excellent guidance.

I'm going straight for the Eastern Shore, and then south. I'll play the shallows when the current is against me. I've done the Western Shore on other distance races, and there's nothing but heartache over there.

I dunno what's going to happen, but I'm feeling pretty good about things so far.
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