This is getting to be a habit, some may say I've been bitten by the sailing bug!?
So despite a fairly poor forecast I persuaded my eldest (youngest just wanted to watch) to come up to Draycote and sail..
The forecast was, by lunchtime looking OK, a bit grey, and definately chilly, but only around 10-12mph and probably dropping through the afternoon...
So we turned up, donned our steamers etc etc and went for it... we'd missed the start by about 15mins... need to think of a better way of getting out the house on a Sunday lunchtime! But decided, much to sons disdain that we'd join in behind the Miracle fleet (about 5 boats) and "see how our boat speed was". He didn't really want to race, but I (again) persuaded him that we were just going round the course, round some marks and nothing more that he needed to worry about! (and fingers crossed I don't get too competitive!)
I was desperate to make sure that in this decent breeze
(a) the boat held together and
(b) the settings I had made hadn't messed up the boat speed or handling...
Luckily I wasn't dissapointed, we had a great sail..
The difference between the Miracle and the Enterprise became very evident as we close reached to where the Miracles were racing... normally in the Ent, I sit there, focus on boat speed, tactics etc and James does that "sitting-out or even hiking" thing... It was only after about 3 minutes when my son started shouting at me:
"..Get your bum over the side.."
"..start leaning out daddy..!"
"..keep the boat flat.."
Jeez, I forgot, he's a little smaller (half the size) than James, and yes now I am the "righting force" in the boat.. bugger, so out I went and started "working hard" to keep the boat flat and stop my fledgling sailing son from having a go at me... I thought sailing was meant to be fun!!
So, now in the groove and after son had had a bit of a dousing by some rogue waves and gusts (yep now he really had experienced fun winter sailing!) and us both knowing our "roles in the boat",we joined the back of the fleet to see how we would fair against "proper competition"... Not too bad as it seems, boat speed was fine, the rig felt pretty good and was setting nicely.. the minor alterations to the loose foot arrangement on the boom was fine and we were holding, and catching the back-markers... and we were going down the reach with no kite (not gonna push him into full racing mode this weekend!)... round the first mark, onto another tight reach (too tight for kite) and we sailed under the backmarker... not sure that eldest saw the importance of this, but for me it was cool, we had a certain level of boat speed..yey!
So the rest of the "race" was fairly quiet, son was enjoying crewing, we were catching the lead 2 boats, wind was dropping, so we went in.. good hour or so sailing, had fun, back in, I put the boat away.. beer, home, Sunday dinner...bed...sleep...great weekend.