US Singlehanded Champ!
Yesterday was the final day of the US Singlehanded Championship for the George O'Day trophy, and we only had two races to complete our series. Having a bit of a lead, I tried to take a pretty conservative approach and stick with the guy in 2nd place.
The first race was sailed in a dying off-shore breeze. I was over at the start (there goes my plan for being conservative...) and did a quick dip to get right back in the race. The course was shifty, but I found myself in 4th place at the weather mark. On the downwind the fleet condensed a little, and I lead the group to the left at the leeward mark. Shortly thereafter, I headed towards the right with the other leaders. Half way up the beat, the breeze died and swung around to the south, a big left shift. A fleet inversion occurred, and I was able to get just enough of the lefty to hang on to 5th in the race, which was good enough for me to clinch the title!
With nothing to lose in the second race, I got a good start near the pin and played the middle left. Eric Bowers got some nice pressure and an assist by some motor boat waves to jump out to a big lead. I rounded in 3rd and had a great downwind to catch Eric. On the second beat, I covered Eric to the right side, and despite losing a bit of distance to some guys who went left, I was in first at the final mark and held on for the win at the finish.
All in all, it was a successful trip to Sheboygan. Sheboygan Yacht Club has a beautiful venue, and I would recommend sailing there in a heartbeat. I'm back in NJ now, and that means back to the shop for the foreseeable future.