Back to the Bayou Regatta

(11.20.04) University of New Orleans
Regatta Report by Matthew Barrett:
Pre-race. Warm, cloudy, no wind.

As we rigged the boats to send Maureen and Sammy out in A, a storm came through and the wind picked up a bunch(21 knots). Maureen was scared. We didn't think the wind would last so we decided that Scott and I would sail the first set in A.

Race 1 A. Boat favored. 15-20 with huge waves. We sailed out of the club at full hike. Once we got into open water I thought Scott might have trouble keeping the boat in control. I was wrong. Not only did Scott show control in the condidtions, he had good boat speed. We started at the boat(about 1-2 boatlengths under). I advised not to tack even though we were in bad air. We banged the left and crossed top half of the fleet. A bad tack took us to mid fleet arround the windward mark. Downwind we got passed by a couple boats and a few boats capsised. Rounded leeward mark and one-tack banged the right. Downwind a couple boats capsised and we finnished 5th.

Race 2 A. Wind paralleled starting line. Boat upwind. 15-20 with huge waves. We started in bad wind under 2 boats. Straight line...bang left...tack once...round in 3rd(or 4th?).. turn downwind and submarine. Most of the race we tried to get the water out of the boat. We had some creative ways of sailing while bailing. Finnished last I think( unless a team abandoned). Those 2 races were the most fun I have had sailing in a very long time.

Race 1 B. DNS. Boat stupid favored. Nuking. No one went out because Maureen was still going to skipper, but was scared of the wind. Maureen decided to switch fleets with me and crew for Scott, I would sail with Sammy.

Race 2 B. Boat retardedly favored.15-20 with huge waves. no hiking strap. As we sailed out of the club, Sammy exclaimed to me that the waves were big. Once we got in open water we were amazed by the size, Kevin commented that he had never sailed in waves this big. We started below a boat...straight line...bang left...tack once...tack for layline and swamp with water. We didn't fully submarine and I decided go with the water arround the windward mark and hope we didn't pitchpole. Sammy bailed alot and we were mid fleet arround the leeward mark. Tack...straight line...dig bow...bang the left, rounded windward in bottom half. We caught a wave downwind and ended up in 6th I think.

Race 3 B. Pin favored. 5-10 with huge waves. We started 3rd from the pin. Casey won the pin, but decided to go back because he thought he was over. Sammy and I were irrationally fast upwind. We sailed left untill a small header came and then tacked. I went deepest left off the line. I went deepest right after first tack. I ate 1 small header to go right, and got a bigger header as I approched the shore. We rounded in 1st. Downwind Carl(USA) caught a wave and sailed past me. Rounded the leeward mark behind Carl by 1 boatlength didn't tack, and ended up crossing him when he tacked. We went alone to the right. Rounded windward in 1st and broke away. Finished 1st.

Race 4 B. Pin favored. wind<8 waves calming down, but still huge. Port tack, we won the pin with Casey 2nd to the pin. Once clear to tack,we went right. I ate the same header, got a bigger one, went with it, break away 1st.

Sammy had excellent boat handling. His tacks and jibes were stellar. He adapted very fast to moving weight arround from for to aft and middle to on the rail.

Things I learned were good boatspeed in waves requires active shifting of weight,sail trim, and heal of the boat. I think I was sailing with fast people in all the races.

Things I think we all need to work on is keeping water out of the boat. Casey said (paraphrasing), the other teams weren't faster, they just didn't swamp. I am sure we could have figured it out.

Keep typos to yourself.

Thanks,
Matt