Photos Courtesy Erik Simonson
By Paul Cayard
This past weekend I celebrated 30 years since I last sailed a 505 by racing on one. That's right, not 30 years of 505 sailing but 30 years since I last stepped foot in one. I crewed for Howard Hamlin of Long Beach up here in SF in the Elvestrom(do we pay him a royalty?)/Zellerbach(I think he died before royalties became in vogue) Regatta. Small turn out in the 505 fleet (8 boats) but it was just about all I could handle for my come back debut. The boats are so complicated now, strings and gadgets everywhere. I last sailed with Denis Surtees in May of 1979 in Durban where we finished second in a very windy world championship. Howard was a crew back then too but shifted to driving (indication of intelligence) and has stuck with the class all these years. He has won the world championship once and been second 5 times including 4 out of the last 5 years.
The 505 World Championships will be hosted by St. Francis Yacht Club the last week of August this year on Berkeley Circle. There should be a bit of breeze for that one, eh? Two races a day! 7 days of racing! This is my next anti aging prescription. The first dose was the Olympics at 45.
This weekend was my tryout. Howard says I passed. But he doesn't know how my body feels today after four races yesterday and two on Saturday. Needless to say, I will have to spend the better part of every morning for the next 4 months working out (actually I do that anyway). My physical targets are; 6'2" (got that covered) 215 pounds (need to gross up 8) and extremely agile and quick (no comment on those two). A crew in SF also needs to be immune to pain and cold. There is only one place we can go to improve Howard's track record and that will be a tall order with 110 boats expected. But we are not intimidated by numbers. Heck, are ages added together are almost 110! 106 to be exact.
Anyway, I see this as another great adventure, a dream really if I can pull it off. And that is what life is all about, dreaming and realizing your dreams. Sometimes our dreams border on unreasonable. But getting as close to unreasonable as possible without going over is exactly where you want to be.
Oh, we did manage to win the Elvstrom/Zellerbach so I haven't hurt Howard's record so far.
Cayard Sailing Website