Another Learning Experience
By WENDY MARTYNA
The Quissett Yacht Club’s first Junior Series race, held in H 12s was on Sunday, July 3rd. The race committee was made up of Rebekah Gardiner, Ben Garfield, Noah Garfield and Wendy Martyna. The morning wind was a bit fluky, presenting a challenge for the committee boat as well as the racers. After setting the windward drop mark and trying to set the starting line, the wind shifted so the Cornelia Carey chugged back up wind to move the drop mark to a location better suited for the windward leg of the course. The course was W2 240, and the wind was 9-12 mph from the SSW.
Two boats with intrepid young sailors came out to race. Sea Glass with Anna Olsen and Alden Burt as crew, and Ethan Burt and Hadley Smith in Tag Along sailed back and forth to plan their starts. Being a little cautious, both boats crossed the starting line 15-30 seconds after the starting horn.
One of the wonderful advantages of the Junior races is the learning experience the skippers and crew gain from participating. And learn they did! Both boats headed to and rounded the wrong mark on the first windward leg. The error was corrected shortly after the rounding when the skippers observed Cornelia Carey waiting at the true windward mark to document the rounding.
Sea Glass rounded in the lead while Tag Along overshot the mark. Up until that point it had been a pretty close race. But then began the downwind sleigh ride, making it difficult for Tag Along to catch up. Gradually the wind built, and with gusts measured at 18 mph the race committee decided to shorten the course. After both boats had rounded S and headed back to X, the S flag was raised and the horn was sounded twice. This created a flurry of activity on both boats. Sailing instructions were passed back and forth between skippers and crews as they tried to determine what to do next. Another learning experience! Eventually both boats figured out that the course was shortened and they were to finish at the next mark.
The skippers and crew of Sea Glass and Tag Along did a great job and gained experience with compass headings as well as an unexpected shortening of a race. Well done!
A hearty “THANK YOU” to the Clark parents and pup, Sparky on Independence, as well as the Burt and Smith parents on Lola for their observance and encouragement of these terrific racers.
1. Sea Glass Anna Olsen and Alden Burt 41:45
2. Tag Along Ethan Burt and Hadley Smith 43:45