Over the weekend of the 5th-7th of October, I jumped back into the 29er for the annual event that begins the new season, the STACK Winter Champs. Having made a few changes in my sailing recently, I was with a different crew for the regatta, Joshua Bull, who was a member of our Inter-dominions sailing team in Melbourne. We managed to get a total of one day on the water before the regatta which probably added up to a total of about 2 hours total on the water training.
The three-day regatta bought prevailing light conditions for the racing which was not ideal for us however it did provide us with a stable platform to grow on. Therefore, with everything happening a little slower allowing us to focus on specific areas to refine what we were doing rather than everything occurring at speed.
Day one was a light to moderate day with the breeze filling in from the south-east which was nice to start the day in the light and would allow us to work on our process considering the distinct lack of time in the boat together. To wrap up the first day with the results being a 3, 1, 2, 4 coming together as a total of 8 points which was tied first.
Day two was a great day on the water with sunny weather and conditions that Josh and I utilised to sail very well in even the lightest race which was a drifter. Our communication levels went to a new level compared to day one where we both came to the same understanding that once there was a bit more breeze we dialled back the communication when we needed it to be still up there. Not the worst consolidation day was not losing anything and slipping down the leaderboard but to increase our lead by one point after a 2, 1, 2, 2.
Day three was a tough day on the water with the limited wind on the race course with an awful short chop. Unfortunately, Josh and I lacked experience in such conditions which made it difficult for us to organise ourselves in certain weight positions. Slipping into 2nd, we finished the regatta one point behind 1st.
All in all, it was an awesome weekend of racing considering the conditions that we were presented with. It was awesome to get back in the 29er for some racing. Little disappointing to finish one point shy of first but it is clear that we could make this gap up with a few simple changes. Regardless, a massive amount of enjoyment and hoping to get back in for a few pieces of training before we compete at Sir Peter Blake regatta.