Saturday, November 30, 2013

MYC@BYC Off Week: The Week That We Let Others Do Our Work For Us

This week is an off week for the frostbite racing at BYC. Rather than show you all another version of "a Race with Bill", We thought that we'd let other people do our work for us and made a visit to the copious sailing archives on YouTube for some Sunfish-related tidbits. We found this excellent interview from 2009, by Bill Brangiforte and Eric Woodman, featuring the Barrington Frostbite fleet's own Andy David, talking about racing in Barrington, although given his attire, the "frost" part of frostbiting must have been understated that day.  He talks about light air sailing, and how to handle the current in the Barrington River where we race. 

Andy is an exceptional sailor, and provides some excellent advice here. Any given week, you can find him at front of the frostbiting fleet. He won last year's frostbiting series (fall and spring), and currently he leads this fall's series.  

Sunday, November 24, 2013

MYC@ Barrington Week 5: The Weather System Used at the Worlds Comes to Barrington

A Sunfish racer trying to make his way to his boat this morning

The wind conditions that caused four days of postponement at the Worlds has decided to make a road trip to the Northeast.  A cold 30mph northeast wind (with gusts to 45), have descended on Barrington, making it impossible to sail safely.  An email went out from the BYC at 8:12 this morning cancelling racing for today.

We're not the only ones deprived of a day on the water. Word comes out of New York that the Wet Pants Sailing Association has had their frostbiting blown out too.

Next week is a built in off week for BYC, so racing will resume in two weeks. Now to think of something to post next week!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

MYC@Barrington Week 4: Even a Blind Squirrel Finds a Nut now and Again

Mark Stoughton crossing in front of Bill Brangiforte. This is something that Never, Ever happens. 
Conditions were a bit wetter, and a lot warmer but a lot less blustery for the thirteen hardy souls who braved the rain for the fourth week of frostbiting at Barrington. Light winds and friendly tides were the order of the day, and there was a lot of close racing.  Five races were run today in winds that ranged from light to nonexistent.  Huge leads were gained and lost over the course of a leg as people sailed in and out of puffs.  Overlaps were all the rage at the marks, generating some spirited on-the-water debate about the racing rules among the skippers.

Bill Brangiforte took the day in the A fleet, while Mark Stoughton built on a personal best 5th place finish in the first race to take the B fleet.

Here is this Week's BoatCam video:

We tried a little something different this week. We had two BoatCams on the water today.  We also have some special plans for the BoatCam later this year, so stay tuned. Same Boat Time, Same Boat channel!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

MYC @ Barrington Week 3: Now you see it, Now you don't. Then it comes and clubs you in the Head

Bill Brangiforte coming to the finish line in the race with gentle breezes.

Today was a weird one.  It started with sailors unable to make headway in the 2 knot southerly against the 3 knot current.  Some skippers passed the same channel marker no fewer than 7 times as the wind blew them past it one way in puffs, then as the wind died, the current pulled them back past it the other way. Most skippers ended up being towed out to the race course so that racing could get started.

The RC managed to get 1-1/2 races in before the light, fickle winds became the extremely heavy, fickle winds.  Within a few seconds, wind speeds went from less than 10 mph to over 30. The B fleet got caught in the squall at the leeward mark. Mark Stoughton got around just before the squall hit, and he got on a plane and covered the entire upwind distance to the finish line in about 30 seconds. The rest of the B fleet was unable to round the mark at all until the worst of the squall had passed.

The consensus among the fleet and the RC was that it would be too dangerous to continue racing, so the third race of the day was back to the dock.  The wind had abated somewhat for the first half of that race, but then came back with a vengeance, blowing 20-25 and shifting 20-30 degrees, making the race a workout for everyone involved.  The tide had changed too, so the current that was against them going out to the race course was against them again going back in. Sailors got stuck in irons and couldn't get out. Some kept getting pushed back downwind. Others were pushed into the docks that line the right side of the channel. A couple of sailors capsized, and a few had to be towed in.

Out of the carnage that was racing today, Scott Greenbaum took 3 firsts in his first day of Frostbite racing this season.  Bill Brangiforte (this week's BoatCam victim) took 2nd and Eric Woodman took 3rd.  Mark Stoughton got 1st in the B fleet, followed by newcomer Steve Boyajian and Bernadette Levesque.

The BoatCam makes its return this week. Bill Brangiforte is the victim today:

Sunday, November 3, 2013

MYC@Barrington Week 2: A Fine Welcome for a New MYC Skipper

Bernadette Levesque (sail #1) joins the MYC@Barrington fleet, bringing the total to 3 MYC frostbiting sailors so far.

We want to welcome another MYC skipper to the MYC@Barrington ranks.  Bernadette Levesque has joined Gary Werden and Mark Stoughton for the fall festivities. Coming fresh off her "Most Active Skipper" and "Most Improved Skipper" awards at the MYC banquet last night, Bernadette started with a bang, adding a BYC first place trophy glass to her collection by taking 5 out of 6 races to lead the B fleet for the day, and 7th place overall, just behind Gary Werden. Mark Stoughton volunteered to help out on the shorthanded Race Committee for the day, so was given average scores for the day.

Bill Brangiforte standing around
waiting for the BoatCam to start working
Bill Brangiforte had the BoatCam on his boat for the day, but technical difficulties caused the camera to record only the single shot that we've posted here. Hopefully we'll have better luck next week.

The day was chilly and breezy, with 12-15 mph winds coming out of the north, almost straight down the river. The tide was flowing out for most of the day, shifting only during the last race. Bill Brangiforte took first for the day, Beating out Doris Aschman, Ken Charles and Andy David.
Gary Werden got his first 1st in Race 4, taking the pin end all by himself at the start and going left when the rest of the fleet went right. He gained a big lead at the windward mark and never looked back. Doris Aschman and Ken Charles also took first 1sts today.