We get a lot of GoPro video of our racing, but it's rare that we get to see an extended sequence from outside the boat. Our YC photographer comes out to shoot pictures for trophy frames several times a year, and during one race caught us in an entire downwind leg. While working to capture the entire fleet, he happened to be at the windward mark while we rounded, and zoomed down to the leeward in time for us to round there too. Here we go.
At the windward mark with our nemesis Stinger (USA 96), and a back-marker from the Capri 25 fleet that started 3 minutes before us. We round the mark and drive over to the offset mark while crew readies for a bear-away set.
At the offset, a big ease on the main and BlueJ powers up when I drive down to take Stingers transom. We're ready to hoist, and if we are quick we can drive underneath them.
We're got them now... we have a good fill and they are still getting sorted out. With our bigger kite and taller rig we can power through their lee and escape.
After three gibes we near the leeward gates and we're got a good lead. Our standard rounding is windward drop with the pole already down and cleared. Here foredecker Jason clears the pole while I drive the boat under the kite.
Four lengths from the mark and we are ready to take it. While the jib is unrolled Jason grabs the guy and readies for the drop. Note the boat way behind us and has already started dousing. Good reliable crew-work lets us sail under spinnaker for as long as possible
Three lengths and here we go, ready for the douse. With the exception of the kite and the mainsheet, the entire boat is in upwind mode. The nice part about getting the pole out and cleared is it allows it to get to this position and sail with the kite up to the LAST SECOND, as the boat is ready to go upwind.
A bit of an oops, as seen in the picture before this one, the sheet was eased a bit too much for a nice windward drop. Normally the sheet is held tighter and the sail pulls nicely around the jib. With too much ease, as the bowman pulls the guy the sail comes around around while filled. This makes the job of getting it down harder. Happily for us Jason knows his stuff.
One length to the mark and he kite is basically down. This is a crucial check-point for me driving because I know with the kite in this position I can turn the boat up at any time and the foredeck and pit (who is below helping put the kite through the hatch) can manage the sail.
Turning the boat, and the mainsheet is trimmed in to match the turn.
Around we go. The jib is over trimmed a bit here but I'm OK with that. As the crew sorts out the boat I can drive to my telltails in upwind mode.
One minor issue. our topping lift (foreguy) shackle was not completely closed and flew off the spinnaker ring where it is stored and dangled loose to leeward. No time lost by letting it fly for now. We secured it after we tacked.