A Typical TTL Season

By John Mayall

It’s easy to summarize the Spring season at Tempe Town Lake – it was the typical season. Typical as in the wind was unpredictable. It came from every direction and often during the same race. Some days there was almost no wind, and on others, the fleets were being blown off the lake. We’ll finish off the TTL spring season with one more day of racing on Sunday, April 25.

I recall an early season race day when only two total races were completed and the Lasers had zero scored unless you count the ‘anything goes’ informal race that Joel Hurley ultimately won. Colin Gibbs showed everyone how to do it and almost beat Joel. Who knew a laser could move that fast using the old sculling method?

Lasers down in big gusts at TTL

Then there was the day the gusts were so strong that the Capri Fleet decided to stay on-shore, except for Igor and his daughter, who braved the conditions to win a race before wisely retiring. And I’d be amiss not to mention the race day that brought a puff big enough to knock down the top four laser sailors simultaneously. It was something to witness, watching how these sailors right their boats so quickly and continue racing.

Turnout was excellent this season and there was some first-rate match racing observed in many of the races. The TTL fleets continue to grow, and the racing is close. The fleets consisted of the reliable Capri-14 and Lasers, Sunfish, Portsmouth, and Juniors. The Sunfish fleet continues to grow and these sailors had some fantastic racing, especially relishing those big wind days. It’s cool to see a new fleet like the Sunfish come out and grow their participation to the point we saw this Spring. The Portsmouth handicap fleet had a few boats participating each week and the Juniors had several competitors on the water each race day. I enjoy being on the water and noticing the juniors’ improvement throughout the season, as I’m sure others do.

Junior racer Wei Wei on TTL

We have had many new club members join the racing fleets at TTL this past year, and on any given TTL race day, you’ll see all sorts of sailors on the water: couples, families, juniors, and friends. It’s nice to see the Adopt-a-Boat program bring new racers to the lake, so let’s welcome these new participants every chance we get. The fleets at TTL continue to grow, and everyone is invited to join in the fun. Just remember what a typical season looks like at TTL!

Bob Naylor appears to be sitting atop glass.
Photo: Joanne Aspinall.