Vallejo Race May 6-7, 2017

Here's a quick summary of the great Vallejo Race from Serenity's point of view although we would love to hear from some of the other islanders.

The day started out with fairly light winds on Saturday and pretty much stayed that way. The start went well with all of the boats on the line on a starboard tack. My crew of Serge, Jack and Greg were nailing the tacks. It was a short upwind leg to the first mark for a starboard rounding and then off to the races. Good to see these guys behind us....

Most people went inside to take advantage of the current. All of the weather reports showed a 20 kt breeze coming for the afternoon. We decided to play for the wind and stayed out where the current benefit would help us if there was lots of wind. As soon as we could Jack and Greg put up our spinnaker hoping for the best. Renaissance of Tahoe had the same Idea as we did. Unfortunately the breeze never materialized and we watched the rest of our fleet creep ahead of us along the shore. Renaissance and we Ducked in in front of the Brothers and around Point San Pablo. Greg at the wheel with Jack helping.

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Renaissance sets
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Greg & Jack

Once around the corner we decided to head in as far as we could get while Renaissance stayed a little farther outside, both of us well behind the fleet. Deciding to go for broke we went until we saw a little less than 10 ft. of depth and kept her there. We weren't sure how much it helped up to Pinole although we did seem to be moving a little better. Once past Pinole we doubled down on our strategy staying as close as we could to shore.

As we approached the pier opposite the Vallejo channel entrance, we looked across and could see Windwalker in the middle of the channel. Shortly after we started across against the current they headed over to the current relief on the breakwater. Using the current break there they stayed ahead of us at the entrance of the Vallejo channel by a few boat lengths.

We promptly proceeded to have problems with our spinnaker. The sock jammed and Jack and Greg did a great floater drop which got the spinnaker a little wet but got in down in one piece. Serge was busy helping with the main and jib. Our only chance was to hope we could gain some by braving the vagaries of the west side of the channel, but it was not to be and we finished behind Windwalker.

Being disconnected from the fleet for the last half of the race, we were not actually sure where we ended up. Once we made it in Greg hung up the spinnaker and we took a break. Dinner was a great BBQ put on by Vallejo Yacht Club followed by a good live band. We got a chance to talk to most everyone and it looked like most were having a good time.

Breakfast at the Sardine Can with friends and crew. Left to right is me, Jack, Nathalie, Kit, Greg (Serge is taking the picture).

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Sunday Breakfast

Sunday Morning was not part of the season scoring but most sailed it anyway. We had the standard fiasco getting out of the marina. The start went well and everybody was off and running. There were very light winds and we hunted for wind and current. Unfortunately we didn't get them when we needed them and ended up way behind the fleet. Wouldn't you know the wind finally decided to show up right at the finish blowing 23-25 at the new finish location deep inshore by the Tiberon Yacht Club.

There was a class and scoring problem (one of the reasons for the delay in getting this out). I got a hold of the race committee Sunday morning and they directed me to the YRA. I called them Monday and left a few messages. We finally connected Tuesday afternoon and got everything sorted out and corrected by Thursday Morning. Results are:

Saturday Spinnaker Division
Windwalker 1st.
Serenity 2nd
Renaissance of Tahoe 3rd

Saturday Non-Spinnaker Division
Zingara 1st.
Kapai DNC

Congratulations to all who sailed. To those who didn't you missed a fantastic weekend!

We hope to see you out on the bay. Remember the next race is May 20th out of GGYC. A perfect venue!

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