Photo by Silken

Coconut Grove

Another picture perfect day with excellent sailing conditions. The wind was a bit lighter today starting out at 11 knots and dropping to 8 by the finish.  The fleet was well behaved on the starting line so no Black Flag today and no one was over early.

We had another great start and were in the top 5 at the first mark.  Not going super fast but ok.  There weren’t any big shifts out there today as the wind oscillated up and down 5 degrees around 165M.

Brian Cramer of Canada got to the first mark first with and we were just behind the Brazilians Lars Grael and Jorge Zarif.  Unfortunately we were slow again down wind today and lost about 5 boats on each run.  We rounded the second windward mark 7th and finished 12th.

I am really scratching my head on this one but I am sure I will figure it out.  A bit late for this regatta but I guess life is that way.  You just keep learning and in some cases relearning.

Zarif leads by one point over Lars Grael who is the defending champ. Mark Reynolds with Magnus Liljedahl are in third place, Torben Grael in 4th, Augie Diaz in 5th and Brian and I are in 6th.  The points are close enough that we can move up or down with two races to go.

The forecast for tomorrow is light…6-8 knots of wind.  That could mix things up a bit as a lot more boats will be competitive and if there is any substantial wind shift, it won’t be hard to be mid fleet at the first mark.  Saturday is forecast to be back on the 10-12 knots which is pure boats speed weather.

For complete results go to



Coconut Grove, Florida

March 1, 2015

I am back in south Florida for more Star sailing.  This time the legendary Bacardi Cup.  This year is the 88th running of this event which started in 1927 in Havana.

57 boats are racing from more than 10 countries.  The competition will be tough with the Grael brothers tom Brazil, local favorite Augie Diaz, double gold medalist Mark Reynolds, and a host of other great teams that all have a chance to win.

Today’s first race finally got underway after two general recalls and the committee resorting to the black flag to keep the anxious competitors behind the line.  The wind was 12 knots from the east and very shifty and puffy as it was coming right over Key Biscayne.

Brian and I had a good start but managed to work our way backwards in the fleet to round the first mark about 25th.  The leader at that point, had had a horrible start, tacked behind everyone and went hard right. The second place boat at the first mark had gone hard left.  Go figure.

It was a day of ups and downs as the wind was very fickle.  One moment you thought you were real fast but it was just that you had a puff that others didn’t.  Same with the shifts.

As the race went on, Larry Whipple and Austin Sperry worked their way from third to first. Brian and I work our way from the 25th to 7th.

Ahead of us were some very good teams.  Behind us there were some too.  So we were pretty fortunate to get back to 7th.

This is a long regatta, 6 races, and each race is longer than what we have been racing down here this winter.  So the tactics can be a bit different.  You can really get a lot of separation, (we call it leverage)  from the fleet which can pay off if you hit it right.

Tomorrow’s forecast is for 15 knots from the east again.  80 degree temperatures are the norm here so don’t feel sorry for us if you are somewhere in the upper east coast or midwest.

For complete results go to: