Day 1: Slow Start, Silly Mistake, 3-1
April 2, 2012
It was a slow start to the day for all of the fleets racing at the 43rd Trofeo SAR Princesa Sophia Regatta today as we all awoke to dead calm conditions which held until around noon when the wind slowly filled across the bay. At that time, everyone headed out for beautiful racing in 6-8 kts. Team Maclaren had four scheduled races today and finished the day with a 3-1 record heading into the second half of the round robin scheduled for tomorrow afternoon.
We had two very close races to start off the day resulting in one win and one loss. Our first point on the board came in our first race against Team Skudina (RUS). We won the pin end of the line off the start and were able to hold just ahead at the top of the course. Downwind, she did a great job of keeping on the pressure but we managed to hold her off to round the leeward mark just ahead. Up the second beat, we extended a length or so which proved valuable for the last downwind leg as she made a charge mid-way down bringing with her a small puff of pressure and drastically closing the gap on us. We held her off though and went on to collect our first point of the regatta.
The second race was just as close, but unfortunately we were on the losing end of this one. We had an even start against Team Roca (ESP) to the right of them and we tacked to leeward of them for the first few intersections forcing them to the left. On the last intersection, she went for a duck on us, we dialed down to prevent her from ducking and she turned up to tack causing us to avoid dramatically. We flew a protest flag but the umpires said that her only way out of the situation was to tack so there was no penalty. We were very close to windward of her at this point holding her to layline. We were starting to struggle to hold her and called that we still had a few lengths to layline, so we decided to tack off with a chance to 'T' her up again closer to the mark. She sailed a couple lengths farther before she tacked and unfortunately, for us, there was a small lefthand shift which wound her up to making the mark and we had to two-tack it up. Nevertheless, we rounded very close behind and we able to close the gauge almost immediately downwind to be right on her tail. We rounded the leeward mark just behind, resulting in us having to tack. We lost a length after that as we came backup together. But we sailed smart and fast and were able to close up the gap and again be right behind her at the top mark. On the last downwind leg, the course was a very long starboard leg, so we gybed on her breeze, causing her to gybe away. We matched her gybe back in the hopes of crushing her next gybe, but she was able to sail very deep which made it hard for us to get onto her breeze. At that point, it turned to a speed race to the finish line and she was able to hold us off, beating us across the line by a length.
In the next two races we had great starts against our opponents and were able to lead them around the course to add two more points to our score at end the day.
Group B starts the racing tomorrow with 5 flights scheduled for them before we hop back into the boats for our final four flights. The forecast for tomorrow is for light breeze again initially, before building a little throughout the day.
You can follow the results online at the regatta website (http://www.trofeoprincesasofia.org/) or on Match Racing Results Service - Trofeo Princesa Sofia (http://www.matchracingresults.com/2012/trofeo-princesa-sofia/).
We would very much like to thank our Title Sponsor, Maclaren, our Gold Level Sponsors 11th Hour Racingand Laser Performance, and our Bronze Level Sponsors Carmeuse, Trinity Yachts, Chicago Match Race Center, and Sperry Top-Sider for their continued support of our campaign for the 2012 Olympic Games. We would also like to thank St Francis Sailing Foundation, and US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics (USSTAG) and its sponsors for their continued support. Also, thank you to our private donors. Please remember that any and all donations/contributions to our campaign should be made payable directly to either The Sailing Foundation of New York (tax deductible) memo'd Anna Tunnicliffe, or to Anna Tunnicliffe.
And as usual, don't forget, email us your questions and comments. We love getting them and sharing our love of sailing and women's match racing.