Today was the first day of the 88th Bacardi Cup. The Bacardi Cup started in Havana Cuba and was moved to Miami in the late 50’s. 70 Star teams from 14 countries are entered for the event.
The wind was in from the east at 15-17 knots and all the teams were ready for the noon start. 2.5 hours later, we finally started our 2 hours race. We got back to the dock at 5:00. It was a very long day. Unfortunately for some, it was a short day as a few broke masts and other gear.
Without going into all the details, we had many-several (can’t remember) recalled starts, postponements and even half a race that was abandoned after the first lap. I was worn out before the race started. The starting line for a fleet this big is two lines put together with a large signal boat right in the middle. So adjusting the angle of the line is a three boat operation and takes time to get anchors up etc. No doubt the race committee are worn out too.
When it finally started, Brian and I had a good start at the left end and initially looked very good. Problem was that the wind went right 15 degrees from there, and with that much leverage to the wrong side, it was a long haul back to 8th were we finished. While not overly ecstatic about that finish, it is a long week and a very tough fleet.
The German Team, and past World Champions, Robert Stank and Fritjof Kleen sailed well to take the win. Peter Vessella and Phil Trinter moved from 5th to second as the race progressed and Arthur Anosov with Edward Morey up front got the bronze. Lars Grael and Samuel Conclaves, the current World Champions, were 4th with local Miami hero Augie Diaz and Bruno Prada in 5th.
The forecast is windy all week. Maybe a bit more tomorrow-20 gusting 25. The race committee with send the fleet on reaches on the first lap if it is real windy. They do this to eliminate one dead downwind run which is where most of the masts break. We don’t reach much anymore in the Star class so that will be interesting. Could become a habit this week.
My friend Marco Oquendo isn’t out shooting photos this week so I am trying to become an accredited journalist with the Bacardi organization so I can get some of theirs. Will include them tomorrow if possible. Should be some good action shots out there with all this wind.
For complete results go to www.yachtscoring.com