J/105 Midwinter Championship, March 2023, Lakewood Yacht Club, Texas

Thanks to Bill Mead for this report:

Friday started with predicted light wind. Boats sat at the dock until 11:00 when Yolo and Kinderspel2 ventured out and radioed there was a chance to race. Two races ensued with Rocky doing everything right, probably for all the wrong reasons. But that’s light air sailing. Saturday, the predicted winds were there with a vengeance: 19-22 knots true. Rocky proved herself again in the first race. But then the finishes started spreading out. With that wind, it doesn’t take much to get in the tank—whether it’s the start, a tangled sheet, an hour-glass asym or guessing which side of the course to favor. But one thing for sure, it was blowing hard. The crews’ mettle was tested. One unfortunate boat, Spitfire, got their asym hopelessly wrapped in the roller furler bearing at the mast top, so they had to head downwind for several miles until the halyard was cut. Spitfire missed two races while getting their act together but were back in the game for the fourth race (finishing third). Rocky got into the same mess but didn’t have to climb the mast. Sunday saw 16-19 knots, but it came in spurts with some 8-10s, shifting right as the morning passed. It was all the RC could do to move the marks quick enough to get three races off. There would have been four, but a further 15-degree shift to the right threw that start beyond the time limit.
Kudos to the talented team from Texas Corinthians Yacht Club who chartered Pesto and won first place overall. Their last four races separated the scoring and allowed their win, taking the Midwinters. Our Chief Measurer from Fort Worth Boat Club found his tempo as the series progressed, moving up in the standings after the first day, and taking second overall. Rocky pulled in to third place overall, showing a great effort in those last Sunday races. The Race Committee, run by Dwight Bengtson and his experienced LYC team of mark setting boats, scorers and signal handlers, got these races off with quite a bit of precision. I noticed though Dwight must really like seeing J/105s up close and running hot, as most races favored the committee boat end of the line. By the way, there were no protests in the series. But don’t write Al Goethe, Chief Judge, any sympathy cards, he was just as happy that way. For complete results, visit https://yachtscoring.com/event_results_cumulative.cfm?eID=15736.

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