Greetings West River/Dave Irey participants,
I have finally journeyed back across the northern border, into a two week quarantine and an Ontario government that still has us locked down and unable to hold sailing regattas. (Even though the experts tell us two vaccines are safe and outdoor activities are good for physical and mental health). Oh well, we’ll see what the coming weeks bring us.
I’m pleased to provide you with a brief account of a very pleasurable regatta experience over the June 5/6 weekend. Unlike the weekend before – a blustery and cold Potomac sailing club regatta – the weather at West River was ideal. The forecast was for light winds, but uncommonly, the conditions were windier than expected, especially as the sea breeze came up as the days went on. Fortunately the Race Committee moved the course further out into the Chesapeake after a light and shifty race inshore to start off Saturday morning. This quick thinking by the RC, and the fresh breeze, meant that the Albacore fleet of a dozen or so boats got in 11 races over the two days. Well done Constantine and team! Farther out in the Bay the wind was steadier, though borrowed local knowledge led us to favour the right side as it swung right, around the point, as the day went on.
We were fortunate to lead the fleet, though our score didn’t reflect how close the racing really was. The fleet was pretty close together for most of the races and boat speed was remarkably similar. There were many finishes between boats that were within just a few boat lengths. Second place in the regatta went to Eva, in spite of being handicapped with an inexperienced crew (LOL Barney!).
As many of you know, West River is a picturesque location, with a very hospitable club. We had the additional adventure of sleeping in the V berth of Barney’s new megayacht – though facilities were underwhelming as the head wasn’t working and we were provided with a bucket for our nocturnal sojourns. Of course we were very grateful for the accommodations (and the libations).
I’ll end this report with the request I made at the prize giving – let’s make sure all our trophies and score sheets include the crews’ names and recognize their contribution along with the helms’. For me that means congratulating Mia Drake Brandt, who, in addition to crewing with me, agreed to marry me last July ( allowing me to cross the border in the first place and thus permit me to sail at West River this year). Thanks, Mia.