3rd Race Day

“We had a shocker” today as they would say in New Zealand. We did not even finish the second race.

The wind was 0-4 knots from 060-100. Very spotty.some spots of complete calm. The race committee did not hesitate to run races in these conditions..no delaying.

In the first race we had a great start, came into the line up late with losts of speed and the timing was perfect. We shot out in front of the crowd and were in a strong position half way up. Then we missed a big left shift and then the subsequent right shift. Then a huge hole and we were in last. We clawed our way back for the rest of the race to finish 14th.

In the second race, we had again a good start and were amoung the top three boats half way up. But we continued to work the left side which had been good to us up to that point. Then the wind which was 2-3- knots, filled in at 4-5 knots from the right. We got to the top mark about mid fleet. I can’t really remember how the rest of the race went expect that we were in company with Torben Grael and Freddy Loof, actually ahead of them for the rest of the race. On the last run the wind went basically calm. Then we the misery was about to end, we were one boatlength from the finish line, the committee blew the gun signaling the end of the 30 minute time limit. If you don’t finish within 30 minutes of the leader, you don’t finish. So us the next 10 boats got scored for 35th. We would have finished 24th so hopefully it doesn’t matter to our final score as it will be a discard.

Ross Mac Donnald(CAN)and Peter Bromby(BER) sailed excellently in that stuff, each scoring a 2-3. Ross is now leading with 22 points to Bromby’s 27. Third are the Spanish with 30 points, fourth Loof (SWE) 30 points, and fifth is Percy(GBR) 32 points.

In the end of the day, somehow we are still 8th over all with 50 points.

Don’t know what the forecast is for tomorrow but it can’t get worse. THE SUN IS OUT!. I think that is the problem. High pressure is over the area so we have sun but now wind.

All for today.

Full results at www.SPAregatta.org

Paul Cayard

2nd Race Day

We had a bad one today. Two bad ones. The wind was 6-10 knots from 330-360 today. Very streaky.

In the first race we had a bad start and got farther back by going to the wrong side.the left. We made up a bit of ground during the race to finish 12th.

In the second race we had a good start and were in a strong position 2/3rds of the way up the first beat. Then the wind went very light and then filled from the left. Left was good and we rounded the first mark about 16th and basically stayed there all race.

Peter Bromby (BER) who had a bad day yesterday won the day today and Ross MacDonnald (CAN) and Colin Beashal (AUS) who also had bad days yesterday had good ones today.

Hard to give you a play by play today as it was just a cluster of boats for us all day. We made a small adjustment to the mast after sailing today.still getting that tuned.

It is a bit warmer today and just s sprinkle or two. Going to try to go for run this afternoon.

Top 5 overall:

1) Loof (SWE) 13,

2) Percy (GBR) 14,

3) MacDonnald (CAN) 17,

4) Neeleman (NED) 18,

5) Cayard (USA) 20

Full results at www.SPAregatta.org

Paul Cayard

1st Race Day

The locals said it was a good day..13 degrees centigrade just a little rain but not too windy.8-14 knots. Still, it was cold, grey and overcast out there. The wind was oscillating around 330, plenty of opportunity out there.to go up and down.

We had a fantastic first race. Had a good start, didn’t feel fast, but kept staying in phase and probably got more than our fair share of luck and ended up winning by 200 meters.the biggest margin I have won a race by in the last four years. Unusual for us, we were fast downwind today. We passed boats

on every run!

Freddie Loof did a very good job of working one edge of the last run to pass about 7 boats and finish second. Mansfield (IRL), Percy(GBR), Neeleman (NED) and Rohart (FRA) rounded out the top six.

We are getting a new mast sorted out and not 100% sure of all the settings yet. Yesterday we tuned with Percy and he pretty much blew our doors off. So it was nice to go out there and do well in the first race.

We had a bad start in the second race, cleared out to the right. Being back a bit meant fighting for our lanes which is tough but good practice. We got around the first windward mark about 14th and went well down the run, maybe passing a boat or two. Up the second beat we did well. The left was good and we were most of the way on the left. We rounded the second top mark 9th and passed two on the final run to finish 7th.

Rohart won the race(FRA) and Percy was 2nd, followed by Serge Kaats (NED), Marazi (SUI- second at the world Championship in Italy last month), Loof (SWE), and Ross McDonnald(CAN) rounded out the top 6.

Over all;

1) Percy(GBR)-6 points,

2) Rohart(FRA)-7,

3) Loof (SWE)-7,

4) Cayard/Trinter(USA)-8,

5) Neeleman (NED)-14.

To say that the field here is deep is an understatement. All the Olympic participants are here plus a few who were in the top of their qualifications. 40 boats in all. If you get behind it is tough to climb back through the fleet.

You should be able to get the full results at www.SPAregatta.org

Paul Cayard

Arrival

Just arrived in Medemblick-Holland today for the SPA regatta. This is an annual regatta for Olympic classes. I have never been here as it is too cold. But this year it is part of our training for the Olympics so we are making some sacrafices including coming here.

There are about 30 Stars here including all the Olympic competitors.

We rigged a new mast today, measured everything, and got the boat all ready to go. Tomorrow we will practice and Wednesday the regatta starts. I think there will be at least two races per day, weather permitting. I am not sure I brought enough clothes so I may have to go shopping at a ski shop.

The email conectivity is not easy here but I will try to keep you updated starting with Wednesdays races.

Paul Cayard

Day 8 Races

We got the final race in just 30 minutes before the end of the time limit. It was a light air race-6-8 knots from 240. The course for today was three windward legs and two leeward legs.

We had a good start again and quickly found ourselves with 6 boats at the front of the fleet. We maneuvered our way around them and led at the first mark. Down the first run, we made a mistake in letting the two boats nearest us gybe first. The pressure filled a bit form their side and there was some current as well that swept us down to the mark. So we rounded that first leeward mark 3rd.

The course was pretty much a one-way racetrack to the right and it was hard to pass. Very near the finish we had gotten ourselves into second only to loose it again to the Danes to our right.

Anyway it was a strong way to finish the series, 2nd from yesterday and 3rd for today.. yesterday in 18 knits and today in 8 knots. It moved us into a tie for fourth overall which we lost to Mark Neelman(NED) because he had two first places.

Freddy Loof and Anders Eckstrom won the World Championship. That was two times in four years for Freddy. As Loof had an 8th as his worst race and Percy (GBR) had a 22nd, Fredddy sailed the two of them down the standings by covering Percy and driving the two of them back. The last race became their discard. That moved Marazzi (SUI) into second and Percy 3rd.

We were pretty happy with our 5th after breaking the mast on the first day. We had very good speed upwind in all conditions. But we also made some mistakes this week and we were not sailing as well as we did in the trials. In both of the last two races I made small but crucial errors that took us out of first place which we held at the first windward marks. That was frustrating to see but maybe it is hard to maintain the focus and intensity that we had in the trials. I feel that I may never have sailed as well as I did in the trials. I will need to devise a plan to get back in that mode for Athens. The Europeans are definitely the class of the class right now but we are not that far off the pace. We will keep training hard trying to narrow that gap.

We packed the boat up and got a ride from some friends to Rome. The boat is going back to the builder, Danilo Folli in Madello de Lario (Lake Como) for a refit. Phil will pick it up on May 20th, with a new mast or two, and head to Holland for the SPA regatta.

Going to sleep now and getting up at 0530 to fly to SFO.

Paul Cayard

Race Day 8

We got the final race in just 30 minutes before the end of the time limit. It was a light air race-6-8 knots from 240. The course for today was three windward legs and two leeward legs. We had a good start again and quickly found ourselves with 6 boats at the front of the fleet. We maneuvered our way around them and led at the first mark. Down the first run, we made a mistake in letting the two boats nearest us gybe first. The pressure filled a bit form their side and there was some current as well that swept us down to the mark. So we rounded that first leeward mark 3rd.

The course was pretty much a one-way racetrack to the right and it was hard to pass. Very near the finish we had gotten ourselves into second only to loose it again to the Danes to our right.

Anyway it was a strong way to finish the series, 2nd from yesterday and 3rd for today.. yesterday in 18 knits and today in 8 knots. It moved us into a tie for fourth overall which we lost to Mark Neelman(NED) because he had two first places.

Freddy Loof and Anders Eckstrom won the World Championship. That was two times in four years for Freddy. As Loof had an 8th as his worst race and Percy (GBR) had a 22nd, Fredddy sailed the two of them down the standings by covering Percy and driving the two of them back. The last race became their discard. That moved Marazzi (SUI) into second and Percy 3rd.

We were pretty happy with our 5th after breaking the mast on the first day. We had very good speed upwind in all conditions. But we also made some mistakes this week and we were not sailing as well as we did in the trials. In both of the last two races I made small but crucial errors that took us out of first place which we held at the first windward marks. That was frustrating to see but maybe it is hard to maintain the focus and intensity that we had in the trials. I feel that I may never have sailed as well as I did in the trials. I will need to devise a plan to get back in that mode for Athens. The Europeans are definitely the class of the class right now but we are not that far off the pace. We will keep training hard trying to narrow that gap.

We packed the boat up and got a ride from some friends to Rome. The boat is going back to the builder, Danilo Folli in Madello de Lario (Lake Como) for a refit. Phil will pick it up on May 20th, with a new mast or two, and head to Holland for the SPA regatta.

Going to sleep now and getting up at 0530 to fly to SFO.

Race Day 7

Today was a beautiful day on the Golfo de Gaeta. It all came good in the end. The fog burned off, the sea breeze filled in and we were off and racing around 11:30. Black flag was up for the first start. No time to waste today.

We had a very good start toward the left side. Very good boat speed up wind but unfortunately the wind was winding right. We got to the first mark about 30th. For the rest of the race we moved up finally finishing 15th. George Szabo with Christian Finnsguard won the first race.

In the second race, black flag up again, we had a good start and after a few minutes tacked onto port and headed for the now obviously favored right side. The wind was 16-18 knots from 250. Mark Reynolds and Steve Erickson were clearly out in front of the fleet about 100 meters ahead of us. We were going very fast now and we ground them down to round the top mark first.

On the reach, Reynolds pushed us both high and they were able to slide down the inside of us for the gybe.yes, we went reaching today. Around the gybe mark and they stretched on us to have a 100 yards lead at the leeward mark. The Swiss team of Marazzi/De Maria, were in third.

For the rest of the race we went a bit faster than Reynolds up wind and about the same down wind. At the end of the final beat he was tacking on us trying to hold us back. He did and the USA finished 1-2. Marazzi was third and Percy (GBR) fourth.

Tomorrow on Freddy Loof or Iain Percy can win. They are one point apart and Percy has a 22 as his worst while Loof has an 8th as his worst. If they both finish worse than 8th, Loof is guaranteed of the win. So I think we all know what he will be doing.

Which ever on wins, it will be his second Star World Championship in 2 or 3 years. These guys have really dominated the class since their arrival. Loof is especially consistent. Percy is the heavy air specialist.

Provisional results pending protest:

1) Loof/Ekstom (SWE) 15,

2) Percy/Mitchell (GBR) 16, Neelman/Van Niekerk (NED) 23,

4) Marazzi/De Maria (SUI) 28, 5) Bromby White (BER) 29,

6) Beashal/Giles (AUS) 34,

7) Cayard/Trinter (USA) 39,

8) Mansfield/Collins (IRL) 43,

9) Szabo/Finnsgard (USA) 46.7

10) Grael/Ferreira (BRA) 49.

I am bushed right now. Two races of full hiking.22.5 miles. Going to sleep very well tonight. Tomorrow, one race and it has to be started before 14:00.

US Olympic Trials – Final

The US Olympic Trials finally went my way. My crew Phil Trinter and I had one of those weeks where everything seems to go your way. We like to think we earned it through our preparation. He is how we went about it.

A year ago we won the Pre-Trials in Miami and won the right to go to Athens for the Pre Olympic Regatta. That is when it really hit me that I had a real chance to win the Olympic berth. The first thing I figured out was that I need to get heavier and stronger. I know how strong I was when I won the Star Worlds in 1988 so that was a good benchmark in the gym. The star Class currently has a weight rule that entices the skippers to be heavy. So I hired a trainer, Sam Brovender of Vancouver to devise a training regime specifically for me. Sam had me putting in 3 hours a day 5 days a week on physical training. I realize that not many people can afford to dedicate this much time to working out and I appreciate that it is a luxury. But it is a requirement to reach the top of my sport. For the trials I weighed 215 lbs. and was stronger than I was at 28 years of age.

The next part of the plan was to attend all the big regattas in 2003. So we went to Athens and got the Silver and the worlds and got 8th

Day 7 Races

Today was a beautiful day on the Golfo de Gaeta. It all came good in the end. The fog burned off, the sea breeze filled in and we were off and racing around 11:30. Black flag was up for the first start. No time to waste today.

We had a very good start toward the left side. Very good boat speed up wind but unfortunately the wind was winding right. We got to the first mark about 30th. For the rest of the race we moved up finally finishing 15th. George Szabo with Christian Finnsguard won the first race.

In the second race, black flag up again, we had a good start and after a few minutes tacked onto port and headed for the now obviously favored right side. The wind was 16-18 knots from 250. Mark Reynolds and Steve Erickson were clearly out in front of the fleet about 100 meters ahead of us. We were going very fast now and we ground them down to round the top mark first.

On the reach, Reynolds pushed us both high and they were able to slide down the inside of us for the gybe.yes, we went reaching today. Around the gybe mark and they stretched on us to have a 100 yards lead at the leeward mark. The Swiss team of Marazzi/De Maria, were in third.

For the rest of the race we went a bit faster than Reynolds up wind and about the same down wind. At the end of the final beat he was tacking on us trying to hold us back. He did and the USA finished 1-2. Marazzi was third and Percy (GBR) fourth.

Tomorrow on Freddy Loof or Iain Percy can win. They are one point apart and Percy has a 22 as his worst while Loof has an 8th as his worst. If they both finish worse than 8th, Loof is guaranteed of the win. So I think we all know what he will be doing.

Which ever on wins, it will be his second Star World Championship in 2 or 3 years. These guys have really dominated the class since their arrival. Loof is especially consistent. Percy is the heavy air specialist.

Provisional results pending protest:

1) Loof/Ekstom (SWE) 15,

2) Percy/Mitchell (GBR) 16, Neelman/Van Niekerk (NED) 23,

4) Marazzi/De Maria (SUI) 28, 5) Bromby White (BER) 29,

6) Beashal/Giles (AUS) 34,

7) Cayard/Trinter (USA) 39,

8) Mansfield/Collins (IRL) 43,

9) Szabo/Finnsgard (USA) 46.7

10) Grael/Ferreira (BRA) 49.

I am bushed right now. Two races of full hiking.22.5 miles. Going to sleep very well tonight. Tomorrow, one race and it has to be started before 14:00.

Paul Cayard

Day 6

It is getting ugly. No race today. Not even a start, not even a warning signal. NO WIND.

Further, there has been controversy over the Dutch Team that won yesterdays race. First they were OCS.so out of the race. Then they protested and got back in. Then Bromby (BER) protested them, and the committee, as he was certain the Dutch were OCS. I don’t know the outcome of that at this time.

The Notice of Race says that no warning signal can be given after 14:00 on Sunday. We have to have three more races in order to have a World Championship. The only exception to this is if someone wins without needing to sail the last race. Further, there can be no more than two races a day. So, if all goes perfectly, there is wind by 11:00 tomorrow and we get two in, and there is enough wind before 14:00 on Sunday to get one more in.

Here is today’s forecast for tomorrow from Chris Bedford US Olympic Team Meteorologist:

Outlook for Saturday (05/01/2004): Weak sea breeze is forecast under good thermal conditions and weak gradient. Light and variable in the AM, becoming S/SW late AM and slowly veering to SW/WSW while building to a 6-10 knots. Mainly fair weather except for some possible showers onshore in the afternoon.

We are here to win. But win or loose, we are training for our ultimate goal. There are some teams here and some countries here trying to qualify for Athens. This is a real bad deal for them.

The most notable team is the Kiwi team of Rowan Lord and Andrew Taylor. They have been training very hard for one year and gone from something like 40th at the worlds last year to top ten so far this year. They are in the top four unqualified countries currently, so they are in a position to go to Athens. However, if we don’t get the series in, the allotment for Athens reverts back to last year’s results in Cadiz and the Kiwi’s don’t go. There are more injustices but that is one that stands out to me.

Anyway, enough with the bad news. The big picture is that we are all very lucky to be out here sailing around.or trying to sail around. Italy is beautiful, the people are very friendly and the food is good. We have a lot to be thankful for. As one friend of mine wrote me after my mast broke on Sunday;

“Hang in there buddy! You could be in an office building in San Francisco trying to sell insurance to a guy you don’t know in the building next door! Have fun, Go fast!! Doug”

Ain’t that the truth!

Hey, I want everyone to wish my lovely wife, Icka, HAPPY BIRTHDAY today. Send her an email at Icka@CayardSailing.com I love you Honey!!!!!!