The last weekend in September we are always racing for the Blue Ribbon on our homewater. I had a quick thought about taking the Moth but with K. and Rod keen to sail on the Bull it was easy to make the right choice. K. kind of begged us to helm the boat and Rod and I agreed. She placed the boat very well on the starting line but it was me who had not put the sheet on the clew of the gennaker thus messing up the start. The two Melges 24 and the J-100, as well as a Banner Sports were up and away. When we actually got the breeze into our 60 msq gennaker we started the hunt. We were able to grind down the Banner but could not pass the the J -100 sailed by our local hero and sailmaker Ger. The Schlei Fjord is meandering through the country side and at the first real corner the crew decided against K. that we should try and carry the g-sail. We were right on the heels of the J who carried a large top spinnaker. We both got hit by a strong gust, which also headed us. Scrambling down the big headsails, both boats struggled. They did better as we did, rounding up one time during the maneuver. We lost more ground through the narrow pass, maybe because of the shorter rig and some inability to handle to "sailing low for better vmg" with the g-sail but the Melges in front were flying through. Nothing spectacular happened on the run, we caught up a bit on the X-34 which before had passed us in the narrow and a H-Jolle (national dinghy like an FD) also passed us. Upwind we lost some ground on the Comfortina 39 and the H-Jolle who both had a battle of titans. Always crossing tacks. The little dinghy taking their right of way and trying to throw their bad air into the towering C-39 rig.
Two thirds up the beat the J-100 grounded badly and we passed them. After that, both the Melges grounded but could free themselves within minutes ("Rattie" did not strap the keel down and therefore freed themselves quicker when the keel came up a little bit) It did not help us as we got caught a couple times on the wrong side of the shifts. I could not help but my mood was a bit down and I could not get us out there. I tangled the sheet once around my ankle, could not execute a good tack and one time I grabbed the spinnaker sheet instead of the jib and messed up another important tack. This shit happens when you put a "natural born helmsman" on the foredeck. Our finish was not too bad though. Sixth on corrected time with a Yardstick of 96 and sixth over the line. There is room for improvement. Number one: Clean the hull before such an "important" race, than the boat would be more slippery and the mood would be better. We hauled the boat after the regatta to put it away and there were some barnacles. My bad.
On Sunday we sailed our annual Laser Championship. I sailed again with Laser 84084 and somehow I asked myself sometimes during the regatta: "Where is Tillerman when you need him most". OK, you can see that this leads to a story with a result which could have been improved but that is another story. Maybe after I get some pictures from this event. The pictures above are showing our Bull with the blue g-sail. Shot at the Blue Ribbon. First photo courtesy to Achim. Thank you. Also Courtesy to Elke Kiupel who did hundreds of good shots from the regatta. Thanks Elke.