A steady carpet of 13-16 knots and a rare windward-leeward course greeted us. We responded with a perfect start that allowed us to snuff a 46-footer to leeward and to repeat the gesture at the end of the first windward leg. "Hang in there", was the mantra: scalloping bow down and bow up in the tight moments.
On the next leg, gybing down wind, we had many more fish to fry and forgot about him. On-board discussion revolved around whether we should be off DDW by 5-10º or by 10-15º. (I'm hoping that issues like these can be discussed rationally once we get VMG/CMG displayed on deck.) Regardless, our boat's superior off-wind performance and our crew's seamless gybing technique allowed us to out maneuver opposing boats.
On the final beat to the finish, some of them were able to pass.One of these we were fine with because she was over-early and never went back. (Don't blame him!)
On the last leg, I again experimented with sharing the helm as a way to work with restive crew members. However I blew an opportunity - just flat didn't think of him - to get Mainsheet Trimmer at the helm as it was his birthday. (Took him out to dinner later.) Took some pictures; not many turned out.
Later, on the dock, is when I should have been clicking away. It's a favorite pastime of mine to watch small craft swiftly crossing tacks sans motor, up the narrow harbor and into their slips, under sail all the way. Today it was a grip of J-24's, with a J-22 and 11-Metre mixed in. These scenes take me back decades when my boats were small enough to be pure-sail.
One shot I particularly regret not getting to capture was that of a lithe, tanned and bare-armed 20-something, nursing a bottle of beer while perched nonchalantly backwards on the bow-pulpit. An apotheosis? Exemplar? But ....
Youth shall (may) be served, but no one gets beer in a bottle on my boat.