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California Race Week the pivotal highpoint race of the Year!
We arrived at Trolleycar to sunny skies and a forecast of moderate breeze increasing through the afternoon. A 12.30pm start saw twelve Martins vying for this all important regatta. We shared the line with our usual group of J80s J24s and this year a 16 boat fleet of Viper 640s. Third class to start we stared intensely seaward and concluded pressure from the south west. The pin end was shared with Velarito and we set off on what some might say was Trolleycar’s predictable initial extended starboard tack. The weather mark rounding was a close battle with many boats – WeBe, Dean, Velarito, Sandbox and Trolleycar, who managed to round second. Downwind the battles were intense and the leeward roundings critical to the final outcome. Realising that the right had seemed to pay our next two upwind legs started right and saw some unusual wind shear combined with current that gave unexpected lift. This shift and building breeze gave Trolleycar the advantage and win in race 1, followed by WeBe. The following two races were each two times around and saw the wind strengthening throughout the afternoon. Weight and weight position became critical and those boats with only three crew became more challenged. The seas were disturbed and choppy and hiking pads were a must. Throughout the afternoon the breeze was shifty but with good pressure leading to a testing but exciting day’s racing. Tired but happy after a successful day the fleet made hitail back to CYC for great food, drinks and festivities
Sunday started out like Saturday sunny with the possibility of somewhat lighter breeze and less chop. Trolleycar had three firsts from Saturday so strategy was all important. Second place was a close battle between All In, and Dean followed by Wombat and Velerito. Jockeying for the start we decided a clear lane and safe position a smart choice. Once more left was the call of the day and paid off with a lead at the first weather mark. Downwind was tricky with fluky winds, some changes so radical that unintentional gybes resulted, or so our helmsman claimed. Managing to hold first we entered the last race with protection our goal. All In, Dean, Velarito and Wombat were competing for second, and the upwind battle saw a close rounding between several of these contestants. Trolleycar followed in mid fleet but made gains in the difficult conditions downwind. As always the leeward roundings were crucial and when presented with a tactical opportunity and an optimum blast of breeze the result was the lead position for our final race. We held onto this position in the final downwind leg followed closely by Wombat and All In and crossed the line to cries of “Picket Fence”
For Full Photographs go tohttp://www.samhaythornphotography.com/Sailing/2014-Cal-Race-Week/Martin-242-Fleet/
For Full Results go tohttp://results.calyachtclub.com/RaceResults/2014/calraceweek-1.html