Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Pre-Regatta Activities

The drive from Ann Arbor to EYC was not too bad. Some poor soul got on the 401 highway going the wrong way which caused a 2 1/2 hour delay for me, but I wasn't on any kind of deadline and so there was no need to get impatient.

Tuesday night a storm came through and blasted the harbor. TIME MACHINE was heeled over 10 degrees at the dock and the wind instruments showed 50 knots. It was an omen of things to come.

Wednesday morning and the phone calls start coming in. Dennis and Paul are on the way, but get delayed just enough that they will be late picking up Jon at the airport. I hop into the Passat and make the run to the airport. When we get back to EYC, Paul and Dennis are there. Bill and Heather are checked into the hotel and soon Jeff and Dale appear.

It's really nice to have the whole team. Loads of stuff are placed in the cars and taken to the hotel or just plain packed away. We spend hours going over every fastener, bolt, nut, split ring and screw. Things look pretty good. The spinnaker blocks from WIZARD are installed and the regatta mainsail is bent-on.

Even though we are still concerned about our crew weight, we all gather at the motel and decide to hunt down an Indian Restaurant. We end up at a really nice authentic place and have a great meal.

Thursday is weigh in and measurement day. First thing in the morning we hop on the scale. We are doing good, but there is one last person to go. We get the last few items off the boat, check the float lines one more time, replace almost all the bungee cord on the boat. The Main, #1 and the 3 kites are brought up to the lawn and all measure in OK. There is a bit of scare when the roach of the main proves to be "absolutely max", quoting Winston. The measurers come by with the hull templates and verify our float line positions and then later in the afternoon they measure the black band on the boom and the spinnaker pole length. We are official!

The skippers meeting is held and we decide to head out on the Lake where the race committee for that night will run a J35 start. The way they run courses is totally confusing so we end up just sailing with the other 2 J35s up to windward and then down to a mark and back up wind. It's a good time to get our sea legs and get a feel for Lake Ontario chop.

Since the weigh in was complete, we hunted down what looked like a Mexican place, but it turned out to be Italian. Fred turned on the charm and asked Joe (our server) if he was Italian. NO, I'm Sicilian! was the reply.... It's like asking someone if they are American and they reply, NO, I'm a Texan. Funny how it's all the same all over the world. It was a great dinner and we all turned in early to be prepared for the early boat call.

See the next posting about the actual regatta!


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