Liberty is being free from the things we don't like in order to be slaves of the things we do like.--Ernest Benn

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


Perfect start in 15-19 knots. I don't know how it happened, exactly. There was no element of desperation, as my mind was clear on what I wanted to accomplish as it has been on all my starts this year: no exchange of paint or skin. Today, we didn't even exchange words with other crews.

There was a lot of congestion and traffic on the starboard pin. I approached with care from a slightly barging position. TW was aboard for the first time in memory and was giving me a perfect countdown. I recall feeling content with a plan B that allowed me to take the escape route: take sterns of the leading echelon, cross the line and tack off on to port to the beach. Instead, a clump of boats clustered around Bon Marley and maybe the Beneteau and the Hunter. I don't know who else was there. All I could see was the huge hole opening between them and the pin. Das Boot was able to slide right in, going full-bore, right on the gun! Snatched triumph from the jaws of defeat! Crew work was flawless. We even got a thumb's up sign from Bob Marley! We had captured and were in control of the entire fleet off to port.

Newman took the helm for a couple of tacks on the final leg. He did
 so with far more competence than I did taking this photo.
I should have stayed there. But I couldn't think outside of my own, self-constructed box. Instead of tacking off toward the beach for the Kelp Straits, I should have run the leaders out to sea. Newman is my 'nagavator' now, but he was quiet. I need to get him back into the nagging mode. I sail better when there is talk on the boat. I was so full of myself, I guess, I couldn't reassess.

So I took the formulaic approach, tacked off to port and to the beach. There was the Ranger-33. Eventually he tacked back on to starboard and we had a port-starboard situation. I thought I had it wired like I had the start. But a huge shift occurred. He got the lift and we were headed. He had to alter course and we had to do our penalty turns. I probably lost more than a half of the 18 boat fleet in the process. The only way we caught Bob Marley was when they had trouble gybing under their chute.

A very good day on the water. It could have been a so-perfect day. I'm still trying to assess the learning(s) to take away from this day.


  1. Maybe you missed or ignored your 6 August daily briefing/memo?

  2. never stop learning? I see at least one big smile in the photo, must have been a good day!

    1. As you well know, Melt, any day you can spend at least one hour on the water, beats any day you spend entirely on land!