Stay Gold Races the Winter Vashon 2016

Race Report. Winter Vashon 2016.

Distance Traveled by GPS: 33 nautical miles
Max Speed by GPS: 9.44 knots
Avg Speed by GPS: 5.7 knots
Time by GPS: 5:50:15
Corrected Time: 4:22:09
Placed: 6th in class, 36th overall.

Stay Gold took part in her first long distance race; the Winter Vashon 2016. Tacoma Yacht

Our route around the island.

Club put the race on as part of the South Sound Sailing Series. We had a great time, learned a lot and put the crew and the boat to the test. The weather was perfect; wind was out of the SSW at 15-20 knots and by the end of the day was gusting to 30 knots. Cloudy, no rain. Couldn’t have been better.

Our seamanship skills were flexed in boat handling, reefing, recovering from casualties and safety. I think we were not unique in this; looking across Colvos Passage as we were making the northbound downwind run it was easy to tell when a puff was making its way along – all the lighter boats would behave a bit uncontrollably.

Getting into and leaving the Tacoma Yacht Club guest moorage was challenging. We were tucked into a tight slip on the E dock the night before the race. Getting out, we had to slide past a few large boats rafted up at the fairway we had backed down the night before. The morning of the race, we were not left with a lot of room to get out to the start line. Luckily, crew of the boats we had to drive past were there to fend us off and we were able to avoid contact.

The race started out with all the boats on a port tack, crossing the starting line then quickly turning north and raising their flying sails. Our highlight of the day happened about fifteen minutes into the start of the race. We were just off the southern end of Vashon Island making our way north under spinnaker and main when our mainsail trimmer, Dean, called out the spinnaker had parted. We quickly pulled in the lower half of the chute and raised the genoa trimming the sails for a deep run. We were unable to get the remainder of the spinnaker down from the mast as it had wrapped itself around the standing rigging.

Stay Gold flying her spinnaker right before it blew up.
Spinnaker turned into pennant.

Every boat on the course knew who we were thanks to our
massive pennant we turned our spinnaker into.

We ended up finishing the race 36th out of 39 boats, 6th of out 7 in our class. It’s a great place to start and we’ll take it.

Next up…Duwamish Head on Jan 7th!

Crew! Photo by Jan’s Marine Photography

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