ISAF Sailing World Cup – Miami
Breeze on and brisk temps making us feel right at home at our first major 49er event!
Racing in a cold 20-25 kn in Miami after 30 days of hot and light training was a great way for D&D Racing to enter the International 49er scene! Although we have only raced a 49er together for a total of three days, we were fortunate to be able to rely on our ability to survive in breeze! Countless San Francisco summer days of blasting around the Berkeley Circle gave us the ability and confidence to just to survive but to continue racing, while many teams were limping around the course.
58 teams are competing for 6 days in Miami in the first event of 2015 on the ISAF Sailing World Cup. With so many entries the fleet is split into two separate groups. The first two days are part of a qualification series to split the fleet into Gold and Silver divisions.
Day one was full of action! Our scores were 19th, 12th, and 2nd. The ability to keep grinding, and experience to know when to push and when to throttle back was critical to our performance! In the first race, we pushed a little too hard and cartwheeled through a bigger set of waves that stacked up over the shallow bottom of Biscayne Bay. Race one taught us to push as hard as possible and no harder, we wouldn’t make that mistake again. After submerging our boat at speeds of no less than 20 knots on the final run of the first race our kite halyard exploded. We pushed on under two sails to finish in 19th.
Waiting to start race two while squalls blasted across the bay gave us the opportunity to rip back to under the Rickenbacker Causeway at the North end of the bay and replace our kite halyard and get back to the race course in time for race two. Another heavy air race with a slightly improved score!
Race Three gave us another opportunity to “send it” in truly heavy conditions. As the breeze held in the upper 20s, we agreed that this is what we were born for…this is our passion! After a strong first beat, our heavy weather background and fitness were beginning to show. The kite sheet ratchet block failed, so conditioning and grit was the only thing that kept the kite filled as we ripped downwind to a 2nd place finish!
Day Two gave us excellent breeze for three more races. Not survival conditions by any means, but plenty of breeze for some very exciting racing. Aside from a mix of results, today was a milestone for D&D Racing. Learning on the fly we are identifying our strengths and developing our weaknesses at a great pace. Our scoreline was 22nd, 3rd, and 19th…strong enough for us to qualify for Gold Fleet racing starting tomorrow at 1000 EST!
This is the beginning of a very promising Olympic Effort!