December 7th 2017
The 1st Regatta of the 2nd Annual CanAm Regatta Series finished yesterday with all six races completed in beautiful, warm Charlotte Harbor, Florida. Our 1st day was pretty light with 3-6 knots of wind that shifted quite a bit. The current running out of the Harbor kept everyone on their toes making lay lines hard to master and leaving passing spots for some.
It was quite a close first beat to the 1st mark as 3 boats rounded overlapped. Bruce Millar made the most of the run on the right side and was able to get a small edge at the leeward mark and carried it all the way to the finish. The Canadians certainly set the pace. I had to hold off Peter Eagar at the finish for a 2nd place.
On the 2nd race, it was my turn to get off to a good start and lead around the course. Peter Wood sailed a very good race for 2nd and Bruce followed with 3rd place finish. The wind was very light and shifty with the current running left to right on the race course. The wind ended up dying at the finish of the 2nd race. Ultimately we waited around for over an hour to start the next race before the PRO sent us in.
With only two races sailed the 1st day our schedule was changed to start early to be able to get in 4 races to complete the Series. It was quite light when we sailed out to the course but a nice breeze filled in just in time. PRO Roger Strube set up a good course quickly, and we were off. I was lucky to have a decent start and lead around the course. Bruce was a close 2nd but over stood the second top mark and let Tony Pocklington slide in for 2nd place spot. This gave me another 2 points over Bruce, which I needed.
The 2nd race of the 2nd day was pretty similar, I lead, Bruce was behind me and Charlie Rosenfield had his best race for a 3rd. The wind went right in this race and was moving toward a sea breeze direction. With 2 races left it seemed to be a two boat race between Bruce and myself. The next race I started on the wrong end of the line. I won the right side, Bruce won the left side, When we crossed he was well ahead and so was Tony. I did get the third but with Bruce winning, there was only a 2 point gap to second where Bruce sat. No other boat could have passed either of us, so it was all on in the last race.
I was not going to be too far from Bruce for out last start. In fact he left himself open so I pushed him off the pin side of the starting line more than once. When I returned to the line I was surprised to see most of the fleet on the right side of the line which gave me the pin to start on port, crossing. That worked out well. Bruce was a few boat lengths back and could not cross and had tacked toward the left. I tacked with him to cover and sailed towards the port lay line and ended up rounding with Allan Leibel who ultimately crossed the finish line in 1st place. I took a 2nd, Tony Polkington finished in 3rd, and Bruce Millar was 4th.
It was a solid and enjoyable, competitive and well run 2 day Series. We had 1day off, before the 2nd part of the CanAm Series began. I was very much looking forward to meeting up with our Norwegian guest, Bjornar Erikstad. It has always been a pleasure to sail against him. Bjornar’s attendance brings up our fleet to 20 boats. A cold front was due to come through, creating a different set of weather conditions. Cooler and windier, but still 70 degrees. Life is good in Florida.
1, USA 7 Dee Smith 10
2, Can 39 Bruce Millar 14
3, Can 8 Allan Leibel 30
4, USA 3 Tony Pocklington 34
5, Can 14 Peter Wood 39
6, Can 22 Peter Eagar 39