Skin cancer awareness has hit the Star Class and we are all wearing these neck and face covers. Photo was from Race 2. Photo by Marco Oquendo.

Coconut Grove

Day 3 of the Star World Championship started off without wind.  The fleet waited for over an hour before we could attempt to get a race started.  Finally around 1:00pm the wind came in from 100 at about 7 knots.

The course for today was the same as yesterday, course 3, which is 3 windward legs and two downwind legs….finish to windward.

The left side of the line was a bit favored but the right side had more pressure (wind).  It is a tough call when the starting line is half a mile long!

Brian and I adjusted our rig a bit for todays conditions, loosening the shrouds to power up the rig.  Most teams probably did this as today’s conditions were in stark contrast to yesterday’s.  We were happy with our speed today.

The wind was once again shifty as it comes over Key Biscayne on its way to the race course when it is in the easterly direction.  The wind is “tumbling” and there are strange “micro bursts” than can “auto tack the boat as the wind shift can be 40 degrees but only last for 5 seconds.

Augie Diaz is building up the regatta of his life.  He is fast and sailing smart.  Bruno Prada is a two time Star World Champion crew and not only are they good, but they have confidence.  This is what it takes to win in this class.  You have to put it all together at the right time and that’s what Augie and Bruno are doing.  Augie changed boats just over a month ago to a new Folli and this seems to be a key move in his bid to win a Star World Championship.

Brian Ledbetter and Josh Revkin had the early lead on the left side of the course but Augie was leading on the right. The Italian’s, Negri and Lambertenghi, were close behind. Down the first run, Augie and Bruno put 100 meters on the with two but that wasn’t by no means the end of it.  The winds are so fickle that one could easily loose a lead out there.

Brian and I had a decent start albeit a bit conservative as the black flag was up once again.  We were about 10th at the first mark and finished 7th.  There were a few ups and downs in there…we may have gotten as far back as 15th.  It was just so hard to tell if the right or the left would be favored at any given moment.

So at the half way mark, Augie Diaz and Bruno Prada are leading with 8 points, the Italians are in 2nd with 14 points and Andy MacDonnald with Brad Nichol crewing in 3rd its 24. The current World Champions, Lars Grael and Samuel Conclaves are in 4th.  Brian and I are in 30th place with 94 points, but when the discard kicks in after race 5, assuming we don’t have another horrendous race like the first one, we will be discarding 73 points.  This will move us up substantially.

Brian and I were pretty happy with todays race given how tricky the conditions were.  But getting 7th isn’t going to do it for us. We have to try to improve on that on Thursday.

Tomorrow is a lay day in the schedule.  So racing resumes at 11:30 Thursday.  All the teams will be checking over their gear tomorrow and relaxing a bit.

For complete results go to www.yachtscoring.com

At this time, the forecast for Thursday is 8-9 knots from the south east.

Paul