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post #179 of Old 05-20-2019
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Re: 2019 Sailing Season on the Chesapeake

Last Saturday was CHESSS's annual Spring General Membership Meeting. The bylaws require that CHESSS have two general membership meetings each year so there was no way to duck out of having it.

Commodore Rich (Ajax around here) came up with the idea that since CHESSS (Chesapeake Short-handed Sailing Society) is a sailing club and not a sitting in a stuffy bar on a nice day in sailing season kind of club, we should hold the annual Spring CHESSS General Membership Meeting at a raft up. Not being a board to leave well enough alone, we decided that it would be fun to include a short length Short-handed race to the raft-up. And not being a board to quit while they were ahead, we decided the event needed a name, and gave it the moniker, "The First Annual Gather and Gab Race and Raft up", a name which was almost longer than the event itself. There was a pretty good turn out for the race and for the membership meeting.

As billed the short-handed race was pretty short in distance and duration. Being held in pretty light breezes, the decision was made to pick the shorter of the two courses so that we could get the boats to the raft-up in Mill Creek (the one off Whitehall Bay) on time for the scheduled meeting. The race started in a north east breeze and so the first leg consisted of a beat/ close reach. There was a lot of current running and the wind was slowly swinging to the east, so most of the fleet tacked inshore early to get out of the current and take advantage of the anticipated wind shift. There were only two legs on the short course and the second and final leg to the finish turned out to be a close reach across the current.

The racers included a couple really fast boats, a Figaro 3 and an Xp-38. The Figaro is a real sight to see when its at speed, clouds of black sail and bright orange foils extended.
Unfortunately, this picture was taken after the race with her sails mostly down.
L' Defonce

It is amazing how much sail this boat can set when it is underway. Intimidating....

The X-38 is an amazingly cool boat. It is beautifully detailed, and just a lovely boat to see. This is an impressive boat in pretty much every way, from its deck layout that is free of tripping hazards, very comfortable cockpit, sensible interior layout with easy to reach grab bars and low maintenance finishes, carbon fiber hull and internal framing, to its nicely proportioned sail plan. One of the nicest all around boats that I can remember seeing in a very long time. This is a picture of a sistership of the Xp38.
Xp38 sistership

After the race, the raft-up and meeting occurred as advertised. Commodore Rich brought along a drone and took this 'family photo'.
Raft-up after the CHESSS Gather and Gab Race

Synergy is the dark blue hull in the middle with the anchor down. The Xp38 is to her starboard. Notice the sheer height of the mast and headstay on the Xp38 compared to Synergy, and Synergy is the roughly the same length and has a pretty large sail plan. Other than the boats in the picture there was the Figaro 3, which was too deep to come in to the raft-up, and there was also an Oday 34 which chose to go home after the race rather than go into the creek for the raft-up. One of the board members volunteered out to ferry members who chose to drive to the raft-up in his Porta-Bote.

Anyway, that was my Saturday on the Bay. Sunday I needed to go into the office and get some work done.


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Curmudgeon at Large- and rhinestone in the rough, sailing my Farr 11.6 on the Chesapeake Bay

Last edited by Jeff_H; 05-20-2019 at 06:31 PM.
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