By Mike Ferring
Lake Pleasant racing can be an exercise in patience. Ignore the wind forecast, which is often wrong. In the late morning and early afternoon, watch for telltale ripples around the south end and hope they build and head north. Hope they last.
Things started slowly on Saturday, January 28, the second weekend of the spring series. Still air at the appointed start time, then enough breeze to send all the fleets south slowly. Then: stalled. Race Committee suggested abandoning, but AYC racers are a tenacious and competitive bunch and once they start, they like to finish. So, finish they did. A course shortened at the “windward” mark for some, the entire course for others.
But then, the breeze filled in. Races clicked off in 40-minute chunks until everybody had done three and the wind was beginning to snooze. We were thrilled to watch Neil Thibodoux and crew shout as they finished, “Our first win!” Neil bought George Tingom’s Catalina 22 and has put an enormous amount of work into it so that it looks like a brand-new boat. Three wasn’t enough for the two Santana 20s, calling for just one more, another shot to pound each other until well after a 4 o’clock course finish.
What about Sunday? Sunday Funday, as Rob Gibbs has called it. As Bruce Lee sailed past on Saturday, we asked, “Will you be out?” “Nope,” he answered. “Too cold.” And Bruce Lee’s from Alaska! It was teeth-chattering cold Sunday morning, but the wind was blowing at 12 knots and four stalwart boats showed up to enjoy it, ripping off four long and fast races. The starts were close and the competition closer, the way sailboat racing is meant to be.
Your race committee Saturday: David Newland, Bryan Payne, Steve Brown, Mike and Maryellen Ferring. And the frozen, early a.m. Sunday RC: David Newland, Joerg Schmidt, Tom Sinnickson, Mike Hester, Mike and Maryellen Ferring.
On Saturday, Commodore Bob Naylor was out with some of the new “L.A.S.T.” program players, six participants and one other new member, sailing aboard “4-FUN” fleet boats (a Corsair F-24, Macgregor 26, C-25, and C-22). If you don’t know about this new program, read about it here. Judging from the registrations (18 as I write this) and the first gathering, L.A.S.T. is a huge success.
Photos by Mike Ferring. Available on AYC SmugMug here.