Easter cup / Paascup 2008

We had our first club race this weekend.

The “Paascup” (easter cup) is traditionally the first race of our catamaran racing season. This year the club decided to have this race 10 days earlier that we’re used too. And we felt it! It was cold, 7°C air and water temperature.

The day started out very windy (5 BFT) and cloudy. Winds were to pick up to 6 BFT later that day. Racing was going to start at 12.30. Gill and I got on the water at 12.00. It felt ok, although the waves were larger than expected.

After 20 minutes we trapped out to test everything. A wave hit my feet and I fell back on the trampoline. I got back out immediately but while doing this another wave hit me and my feet were slammed of the boat. We were speeding and my legs immediately “flew” to the back of the boat. I was still hooked and I got turned, my back against the hull. Gill tried to slow the boat down but he couldn’t turn into the wind because another boat – a Hobie Dragoon - was sailing right next to us. It took a while for them to pass us and finally Gill managed to reduce the speed and pull me back up. At that time I was exhausted and freezing. I had several cold waves over my head and I was shaking and cold. After a lot of discussing and doubting I decided the race was over for me and I wanted to return to the beach.

So we returned and took the jib off so Gill could start the race solo. He managed to get back in time at the start and he did ok. He could keep up with the Nacra Infusions. Buy, after half a lap, there was another team in trouble. Iris pulled her shoulder and she had to get back to the beach. Gill noticed this and decided to follow them to the beach. Since by then it was really blowing Gill decided to get back with Jan on his infusion and finish the race.

Race 2 started, but never ended. After rounding the gate, Gill and Jan capsized. Due to the strong current (spring tide coming up the next day) they got separated from the boat and needed to be put back on by a rescue boat. At that moment 4 other boats were capsized (with crews separated from their boats) and since the rescue boat was also the start and finish boat, all further races were cancelled.

What a day!

Right now we’re trying to sail as much as possible in the weekends. We need to be prepared for our next event: Eurocat at Carnac. This event is looking great: 4 days of sailing (May 1 to May 4) in France, with 400 participating boats. We’ll also see some of the F16 sailors from Holland and the UK, so I am really looking forward to that. Just keep your thumbs up that weather will be nice. My wish list: sunny and 3-4 BFT! Please help me weather gods!