Month: April 2017

Makani’s First Singlehanded Race and Second Club Race.

Makani’s First Singlehanded Race and Second Club Race.

Sausalito Yacht Club’s Midwinters, February 5th Race.

The weather looked a little more favorable for this race compared to the first one.  Wind out of the Southwest at 10-15 knots, with a strong ebb at the start.  In preparing to singlehand I went out the week before the race and pre-marked the Choker line and Topping Lift to make it a little easier for me once the race was under way. Of course these were approximate trim markings and still had to be fined tuned out on the course.

With our 174 PHRF rating and the NorCal YRA rule that Nonsuch’s and Wylie Cats have to race in Spinnaker Classes, we were set to start in the Spinnaker Class C.  The other C class boats rated from 120 to 145!

Running the line
Running the Line.

I had my tablet mounted by the wheel with a good Countdown Timer app set up.  I ran the line a couple of times to get my timing down and did a pretty good job of hitting the line when our class flag went up.

The only problem was that I was at the pin end and the current was taking me away from the first mark.

Pin end start.

And as you can see, I’m not pointing nearly as well as the International One Design, one of the boats I’m racing against. Thanks to these very helpful pictures taken by a great photographer on the RC boat, Roxanne Fairbairn, I see that the sail could be sheeted in a little more, maybe drop the Wishbone a touch,  and pull the Choker tighter to get the top batten pointing back more instead of out.

Course 11
SYC Course 11

The Race Committee sent us out on Course 11–one beat across the bay from Angel Island to Crissy Field then a run back to the finish.  The story of the race was losing a lot of ground to the other class boats on the beat due to poorly using the ebb and not pointing well.  But we did make up time on the run back to the finish!

Crossing the Finish Line

A total of five classes were racing, three Spinnaker and two Non-Spinnaker.  25 boats in all were out there, four in our Spinnaker class.  We came in 4th.  However, all the classes raced the same course, so based on corrected time we would have come in 2nd in the appropriate Non-Spinnaker class!

Heading home
Heading home.

I’m still learning a lot about the boat and racing singlehanded was an additional learning experience.  Every race gets me a little sharper on sail trim and tactics, and racing alone is a total immersion experience–complete concentration every second.

My Nonsuch 30U again proved herself to be everything I hoped for and I will definitely race singlehanded again!