Well, today came and went very quickly...
9 boats entered, 6 on the starting line, 2 late but within the 20-minute window, and one boat that showed up after we launched (sailed the course on their own as the DNS boat).
After a late launch, and a bit of trouble getting the anchor to bite on the signal boat, we had an on-time, all-clear start for Day 1.
The wind was Westerly, and while NOAA was forecasting a small-craft advisory, conditions up inside Narragansett Bay were brisk, but not unmanageable. Winds in the teens at the start, very little wave action given the wind direction. Of course, the trade-off with wind coming over land is the gusty-ness...
We set a long course, starting southeast of Rose Island (alongside the course for the NYYC Morgan Cup team racing regatta), and sent them up through the Newport Bridge, to the South of Prudence Island, then straight upwind to Quonset Point. From there, around the top of Prudence, dip south of Hog Island, and up under the Mount Hope Bridge, up into Fall River, then back down through Mt Hope, up over Hog, then a straightish shot back to finish Southwest of Rose Island in Newport.
The lead boats finished in just under four hours, despite a dying breeze as the seabreeze filled very, very late in the day (big shift to the southwest after most of the fleet finished).
Two boats bailed early (Skip Whyte and Ian Ray). Ben Setareh flipped early, then just followed the fleet (and took some risky shortcuts, narrowly avoiding disaster by cutting inside marks specifically chosen to keep delicate boards away from rocks!!!), eventually sailing around the outside of the finish line (enjoyed their day of sailing despite having no chance of catching the fleet).
Mike and Lindsay Easton started late, and had a minor rigging mishap, but corrected that and otherwise sailed well.
Jim Zellmer and Joe Valente were sailing fast, but just barely fast enough to eek out John and Peter Giuliano at the finish by a mere 9 seconds!!!
More west wind is forecast for tomorrow, with less pressure.
Results, etc. here: http://www.regattanetwork.com/event/19280#_docs