Race Day 1 – Three races were held today and the competition was extremely tight. In fact, just three points separate the top 6 boats at the end of the first day. Emirates Team New Zealand, last season’s winner, scored both a first place and a last place in today’s racing.
Onboard Artemis we had a good day. We had three good starts and were always in a good lane coming off the line. We scored a nice third place to start things off, then in the second race tore our gennaker at the first mark and were well clear in last place by the time we got the replacement sail up. Still, we managed to claw our way back to 6th. Then in the last race, we got a bit too far to the left of the fleet on the first windward leg and were deep in the pack. We did manage to pass a few boats on the final run to finish 7th.
The racing was always tight with lots of action around the marks. No one dominated the day, neither on speed or tactics. Likewise, the closeness in the scores.
Another feature today was that the left side was pretty good at times, so that kept the race course more open than usual. The winds were 12-16 knots from the Northwest with oscillations of 20 degrees. Very fun conditions in these boats.
Tomorrow, the forecast is for a bit more wind and the race committee will probably shoot for three races again.
I took some photos of the fleet at the dock this morning. The race village here is the best on the circuit.