Orlando Webb regatta 2019 race report:
It has been awhile since I've written a regatta report. But then, It's been awhile since I did really well at a regatta. So here goes.
I arrived at Lake Lotawana Missouri Saturday about 8:00. Just enough time to launch the boat before the 9:00 shippers meeting. Met with some old friends and made some new ones. Thirty one boats were registered. Skippers hailed form New York, Wisconsin, Oklahoma, Texas, Colorado, Kansas and Missouri. A few of the locals are regulars on the midwinter circuit so there was a pretty good field of competitors.
Saturday's wind was from the West which isn't ideal on this L shaped lake with the E/W arm being the short one. Velocity ranged from my being in the middle of the boat to on the rail with the traveler eased a couple inches. Puffs coming down the lake but sometimes out of the coves. Keep looking for the dark water.
The left end of the line was favored as well as the left side of the course. Broke off the start line on port just below my sailmaker Bill. Fun fun. His presence makes me really concentrate on going fast just because he built my sail. We battled it out and somehow I prevailed. Second race was pretty much a duplicate of the first, then we broke for lunch of boxed Subway meals.
The first afternoon race was to be a short one as there was a possibility of thunderstorms popping up and the RC was going to try for two races. I went into the top mark about third but had to tack against a big starboard shift/puff and tacked back within three boat lengths the mark. After I cleared the mob I paid the penalty under great encouragement from Bob Jr. (Hint, the boat doesn't spin very well with the boards up.) Recovering in the short race wasn't to be so I finished eighth. Sure enough, a massive looking thunderhead popped up so we called it a day. Results after the first day found Bill leading me by two points with JP, Spencer, and Danny a few more points back.
Sitting around after the days activities MaryAnn passed around what I thought was a jar of peanuts the way everybody was downing them. It was ibuprofen.
Sunday dawned with a lighter wind, forecast to be from the North and possibly shifting Eastward. We were now racing on the longer arm of the lake but only using half of it so we could get in two short races. Bill and I were one/two going into the top mark until Spencer (local ace) came out of nowhere to round first. He did the same thing again on the second lap. But somehow I won with Bill second. He is still one point ahead. Just before the start a quick but short blast came in from the East, then went back to the North. The stronger wind was from the left, so that is where I went. Mistake, as the wind oscillated East for the first leg putting me in a big hole with Bill sitting on top of the fleet. I fought back up to finish fifth but Bill won the regatta with no races worse than third. Mr consistency.
More people should go to this regatta. The competition is always great. For $80 I received the registration, a BBQ dinner, two lunches, two brunches, and really nice polo shirt. Lotawna also provides free housing on the lake with club members. Gary, the regatta chair, had a wonderful crew of, I'm guessing, more than thirty. Accolades to the great PRO crew. (An experienced and competent crew led by Lisa. All very cute but protected by a rather large bouncer driving the RC boat.) Launch committee. Lunch committee. Spectator committee. "Refreshment" committee. Trophy committee. Scoring committee. Thanks to all. What a wonderful regatta that once again lived up to its reputation.
Mark. MC 1772