May 312016

Race 3 Shields Fleet Nine.

The race start was between Rose Island and Goat Island, with a dropped windward mark just past the dumplings in the center of the channel. Had the windward mark been dumplings it would’ve been a 50-50 call between left course or right of the racecourse with an incoming tide. With the dropped mark it slightly favored the Ft Adams shore. Maverick started halfway down the line with 226 directly to windward of us getting a fractionally better start. It was then a drag race on starboard all the way in to the point of Ft Adams to try and get out of the incoming tide. With the wind from the southwest and incoming tide, there is often a slight right-handed wind band around the point of Ft Adams.  This proved to be the case and the boats that started at the fractionally favored pin and ended up on the outside of the 5 to 8° right-hand shift. We managed to pinch off 226, expertly helmed by Seth from Future Fibres. From the point at Ft Adams it was then just a question of holding the Ft Adams shore until we got the layline for the windward mark. We decided a bear-away set was the best choice to clear the boats heading for the mark.  The pressure downwind was right of center as was the strongest current flow.  It was an interesting time finding mark 8 in the fleet of Newport Yacht Club racers and we almost rounded their starting pin before recognizing where it was.  Then it was a matter of repeating the first lap keeping close to Goat Island avoiding the current line.  The second downwind was similar to the first of keeping clear air and staying in the current.  We did almost lose the spinnaker on the second drop but thankfully we got it in before we needed to round the mark.  At this point we did our best to keep clean air from the NYC fleet and chose the boat end for the finish.

– Ted Slee & Andy Green

Maverick #33

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