Funky Fun sums up this weeks Thursday night racing. Wind was unsettled as today’s storm pushed onshore. Wind on the beach was oscillating from the standard SW to SSW with the puffs pushing south and the lulls farther west. With all that going on it was a big kites night, especially with the ripping flood. Racers took anything from 15M to 19M kites but pretty much it was a take your biggest kinda night.
The line was heavily boat favored which forced the entire fleet to start on starboard despite the uncertain exit from the holes near the beach. Those that started late boat often made out the best being able to control their exit to port.
Race one had a tight pack all arriving at the windward mark at the same time. Joey Pasquali (8,2,3) reached the lay line first coming in fast on the starboard. Daniella Moroz on a 19M kite went to tack inside but she got lofted and Joey couldn’t avoid quickly enough. Both Joey and Daniella ended up swimming. Next came Johnny Heineken (4,1,1) and Gabriel Wicke coming in as the carnage was unfolding. Somehow they decided to join the swimming race tangling just as they came around the mark. This left a wide open launch pad for Stafaans Viljoen (2,4,4) being the first to successfully make it around the mark followed by Kai Calder (1,3,2) and Seth Besse (3,5,5) following closely behind. Kai carrying a bigger kite was able to overtake Stefaans on the downwind and held him off to the finish.
Race two saw more people getting stuck in the hole inside giving the fleet some impressive separation. The wind had gone farther south in a magic wind line extending from the start to the windward mark, at Anita the wind was farther west and outside the wind was again farther west. If you missing the magic you were shot out the back. This time the windward mark was considerable less eventful with most competitors making it around smoothly, with the exception of a few folks caught by the flood and the southerly shift at the mark. Downwind everyone was soaking as low as possible trying to make the gates without a jibe. 15M kites didn’t but most of the 17s and 19s did. Johnny managed to pump the foil through the gate while Joey, Kai, Stefaans and Seth had to throw a quick jibe. A number of people who made the southern gate however found themselves in a vapor hole inside losing the gains made on the downwind.
Race Three the wind really was messing around, delivering personal puffs and personal shifts. You could be 50 ft from someone and in 15 degrees different wind and 10 knots different pressure. The downwind in particular was entertaining and must have been confusing to watch from the beach. The combination of lulls shifting west and puffs south meant the racers where altering their point by 30 degrees seemingly every 10 seconds.
All in all a successful night with most competitors making it successfully to the beach under sail.
Don’t forget racing next Thursday, May 31, 2018.
1) Johnny Heineken
2) Kai Calder
3) Stefaans Viljoen
4) Joey Pasquali
5) Seth Besse
Schedule: April 12, 26 | May 10, 24, 31 | June 21 | July 12, 26 | August 23 | September 6, 20
For more information, schedule, registration, notice of race, entry list, race committee, etc.. Visit stfyc.com.