Wednesday, January 26, 2011

US Sailing's Rolex Miami OCR - Satisfactory Day Despite Wind Shift Delays

January 26, 2011
Miami, FL

It was a long day on the water for only three gold races, but it was a successful day finishing 2-1. The wind swung around as the cold front approached and moved through the Miami area, but the race committee of US Sailing's Rolex Miami OCR did a great job in getting in as many races as they did given the conditions.

Looking For .....? Layline? Competitor?
Photo: (c) Amory Ross / US SAILING 2011

The day started with a light southerly ahead of the front, and then swung to the west as it approached. Group A finished their last race before the big swing and while the race committee waited for the breeze to settle in, a protest hearing was heard to determine who in group A would advance to the repecharge, and who would be in silver. Eventually the results were resolved, the wind settled and racing started again. The repecharge group completed three races and we quickly rotated into the boats to do our three races before sunset.

By 3pm, we were finally racing. Our first race was against France's Claire Leroy. In the pre-start, Leroy got a penalty for gybing too close in front of us. We had an even start at opposite ends of the line, us at the pin and her at the boat. When we came together half way up the leg, she was slightly ahead of us, but we held close and rounded right behind her at the top mark. Downwind, we hung tight and rounded again right behind her at the bottom mark. Upwind was the same story which inevitably, would lead to an exciting downwind leg to the finish, where she would try to draw a penalty back against us. Molly and Debbie did a great job controlling the boat and we waited for the opportune moment to gybe with the spinnaker and dive down to beat her to the finish line.

The second race was against our Finnish friends, Team Lehtiman. We had a similar start with them only this time with no penalties. At the top mark, we were bow to stern. The race was close all around until the last leg where we managed to roll over the top of her with our spinnaker, but didn't have quite enough distance to get around her before reaching the port layline. It was a tough loss because we had managed to take the lead, but we learned a few things from the race.

Our last race was against Ekaterina Skudina and team. At the start she earned a penalty. We rounded the top mark ahead of her and she accidently hit the mark as she rounded earning a second penalty which meant that she had to take one of them immediately. We extended on the leg and held on to the lead to take the win.

Tomorrow, racing begins at 9:30 with the repecharge group wrapping up their two races. Then we race our last two races to finish the seeding for the quarterfinals. The quarterfinal racing starts on Friday morning.

There are live twitter feeds online with updates. You can find results at the regatta website here.
We would like to thank Carmeuse and Trinity Yachts for their continued support of our campaign for the 2012 Olympics in London. We would also like to thank US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics (USSTAG) and its sponsors for their support. Also, thank you to our private donors. Please remember that any and all donations/contributions to our campaign should be made payable directly to The Sailing Foundation of New York (tax deductible) or to Anna Tunnicliffe.

Sail Hard

Team Tunnicliffe

And as usual, don't forget, email us your questions and comments. We love getting them and sharing our love of sailing.