We got three races in today. The first one in 12 knots, the second in 18 knots and the last one in 22 knots. Then after the last race it was a 5 mile beat back to the harbor. I think everyone is pretty tired. It is 20:05 right now.
We had our heavy air rig and sails on as the forecast was for a moderately strong “Levante” today and it looked pretty good for that this morning. Sailing out to the start it was about 16 knots so that was perfect. Then just at the start of the first race the wind dropped to 11-12 knots and stayed that way for the whole race. We weren’t setting the world on fire and we didn’t sail particularly smart either. We got 14th in that one. A young Italian who sailed 49ers at the last Olympics won the race in our group.
We are divided into two groups. So there at twice as many people getting 1st, 2nd and thirds, etc. in each race. Also, you don’t race everyone so it is kind of strange.
For the second race the wind was back up to 16knots and we had a great start at the windward end. After about 8 minutes, Colin Beashal, (Australia) was coming out of the left and was going to cross us by about 2 lengths. Then he dropped his rig right in front of us. We tacked out of that mess but that was a close call. On the first run, surfing conditions now, the running backstay came out of the cleat. It was only in one, and it came out. The rig was about 6 feet over the bow, bent in a very ugly way. It should have come down. I headed up quickly into the wind and Phil reset the backstay. WE saved the rig and the worlds right there. We had a few problems with the rig after that but managed to get a fifth out of that mess.
Third race, 22 knots, big waves because the current had now shifted and was going against the wind. We had a bad start because the only guy who was over early was right in front of us. We had to tack out, duck a few people and get a clear lane out to the right. The left had been paying all day and we never seemed to get that through our heads. The course for the third race was an old “Gold Cup” course which is beat, reach, reach, beat and run to the finish.also called a “Triangle-windward-Leward. We got to the first mark about 10th but took the “low road” on the first reach and blew through about five guys to round the reach mark 5th. Same at the bottom mark. Then we passed two guys up the second beat and held third on the run.
All in all we survived more than we raced which is a bad thing for today but the good side is that our speed is pretty good so if we can get out act together we should be in good shape tomorrow.
The Italian, Francesco Bruni, won our group today and is leading overall. Xavier Rohart, France, was the top boat in the other group. We were about fifth in our group, 12th overall and top American so far. Tomorrow we will be in different groups according to the finishing positions of today. I am not sure but I think we are scheduled for three races again tomorrow.
We have to take our rig down tomorrow early and check it. A first check of
it seemed like it was ok.
That’s about all I can do for tonight.
I think you can get the results at www.cadizworlds2003.com.