Saturday, May 2, Mary and I participated in the annual Galveston Bay Cruising Association Women’s Regatta.
I know what you’re thinking — that’s the race with wenches on winches where every point of sail is a broad reach. (The crew worked so hard to come up with those puns I had to throw them into the blog somewhere.)
Big thanks to Doug Elmore, Captain of Antares, for letting us ride along and for letting the ladies helm his boat.
Mary was quite excited because it was a fairly calm morning (she’s not really into heeling over and burying the rail in the water just yet), and because she got to fill-in on the main sheet.
Doug had a cockpit full of women when we pulled out of the marina, but I think that’s the way he likes it.
We were a bit slow getting started because their wasn’t much wind, and the committee boat had to re-adjust the course.
We brought along a drifter to help in the light wind, so the guys were getting it ready. It’s still a man’s world up on foredeck.
It might seem a bit crowded on Antares, but this is actually a light crew. Doug usually has a few extra passengers tagging along for the ride during the rum races.
After a few more circles, we were racing — with the ladies running the show.
We didn’t have many entries in the cruising class.
But Solaire managed to make us all look bad.
I mean, they did have a lighter boat with a longer waterline, but who’s counting?
Since I wasn’t really needed except for some occasional tailing duty, I seized the opportunity to snap photos for the blog. Here’s our crew at work — if you can call it that.
The first race we might have attempted to round the mark on the wrong side, which cost us two extra tacks to get back over to the correct side. Then, we might have attempted to finish on the wrong side of the committee. Only when the crew of Solaire yelled to us that the finish was on the other side did we realize that we hadn’t actually crossed the line yet, but we turned around and eventually finished.
The second race was the same course, so we had a much better start, and we steered for the correct side of the first marker.
However, we lost sight of the committee boat and over steered the finish by quite a distance, which left us turning downwind too close to the finish to raise a spinnaker, but too far away to cross before Solaire.
We watched all the spinnaker class boats come in after us. I especially like the Texas Flag chute.
As we wrapped it up for the day, we saw this guy streaking across the bay. Thankfully Flying Phantoms don’t compete in our class because he was passing all the J boats like they were standing still. I would love to play with one of those things.
Since it wasn’t a very large regatta, the committee boat got some great photos of everyone involved. They also got some drone footage (and as always mixed it with the very best smooth jazz money can’t buy).
Check out their entire photo gallery here courtesy of Aaron Brittain: https://www.flickr.com/photos/lacyphotos/sets/72157652270966026/