March 17, 2015

Flying Tiger 10M North Americans | Ullman Sails

The Zhik Flying Tiger North Americans coincided with the Zhik Flying Tiger Winter Series Week 3, which were conducted on March 14 and March 15 at the Lake Lanier Sailing Club.  Ullman Sails is also a sponsor of this event.  Unfortunately, three of the boats that had committed to being at the event could not make it for one reason or another.  Generally, the wind at this time of year is in the 10 to 15 mph range.  The sailors awoke Saturday to unseasonably light breeze and dense fog.  Sunday was sunny with slightly better winds.  As a result of the fog combined with the light breeze, the racing on Saturday was postponed from a scheduled 10:30 AM start to around 2:30 PM.  The first race was a windward–leeward of roughly 1.5 miles with the boats finishing in just about an hour.  The first boat to finish was Solitary, skippered by Jeremy Alexis from Chicago, picking up where they left off in Week 1, when they recorded 6 firsts.  Second was Renegade, skippered by Jeff Freeman from Flowery Branch, GA.  Third was Viper, skippered by Roger Pollack from Detroit, and fourth was QMN, skippered by Ivars Blumenau from Flowery Branch.  The next race was in little to no wind with Viper finishing first, Renegade second, QMN third, and Solitary fourth.  So after the first day, there was a two-way tie for first place and the second place boat was one point behind.

Saturday night Lake Lanier Sailing Club hosted a chili/rum dinner.  It was a good time with several stories being told and some advice proffered, such as your jib is sheeted too tight. 

On Sunday, the race committee was able to get five races in before the wind died.  The first race started at 9:45 AM and all the boats were at the dock by 1:30 PM to allow the out-of -towners to put their boats to bed and catch a flight home.  The first race was won by Renegade followed by Solitary, QMN, and Viper.  In the second race, Renegade was pushed over early by QMN.  Renegade was the only boat over early during the whole regatta.  Solitary won the race.  Renegade was able to pull out the third race.  The fourth race was won by QMN, and the fifth was won by Renegade.  

Overall, the racing was tight with only seconds separating the boats at the finish.  Team Renegade claimed the 2015 North American Championships with good crew work, great boat preparation, fast sails and good rig tune.

Jeff Freeman