Day 3 of 2016 US F18 Nationals
September 21st, 2016:
The fleet had an early start to try to get some races in before the wind shut off. Wind was coming out of the North around 7-10 knots. We definitely saw consistent oscillating shifts throughout the whole day. As the day continued on, the wind died down to the typical nothing. We were able to complete 4 races, but it was a good/challenging day of racing. Robbie Daniels/Gary Chu and Todd Riccardi/Bryan Paine are currently tied for first place after 2 days of racing. Luke Ramsey/Sam Carter are behind them by 5 points. Full results here.
The most important thing today was getting a good start, the line was very square so it didn’t seem to matter too much where you started, timely acceleration was key. We started at the pin the first race then switched to closer to the boat as the breeze went a bit right. From there we just tried to stay in phase and paid close attention to what was working for others around us and their loses or gains. Downwind was difficult and we kept having to remind ourselves to be patient, several times boats around us would get personal puffs and gain but I kept reminding myself that our chance would come and it usually would. – Todd Riccardi
Photo Credit: Jill Nickerson
4 races sailed today. Double wire out to the course, but dying as we went out. First race was sailed in moderate single wire conditions. We won the pin end and had a good first leg to round with the top. Set the Hyde kite downwind and made some gains on the boats ahead, managed to hold upwind and finish third. Next race, won the pin again which paid, rounded the top mark in 3rd or so. Did some more work downwind. By this time the breeze was light and we were both sitting in, but it was still occasionally hull flying conditions. Had a solid rounding and next beat up, chasing down Dalton and Charles who were leading. They crossed the line and didn’t get the horn, we did for the win (turns out they were OCS). Next race was very stressful as the breeze died. By the second upwind mark we were in 5th or 6th with a cluster of boats, but managed to hook into some pressure middle of the course and inch down to finish 3rd. Final race of the day was tough. We went to the left side of the course off the line and off the rounding (latter somewhat forced to stay on clear air), and ended up getting buried at the first mark rounding-it was pretty tight with Robbie and Todd getting away free in 1-2 but behind the air just shut down. Didn’t manage to make up too much downwind in the near drift off and the second upwind leg wasn’t good to us; the further up the best we got the more headed we ended up, so the boats on the right side of the course gained massively as we took a big header on port back to the mark. Downwind the lead boats managed to finish in some air, while it completely shut down for us and the right side of the course that paid earlier upwind didn’t downwind. Just a loose loose race for us, but the first 3 were solid. -Luke Ramsey/Sam Carter