Icebreaker Regatta 2014 - written by Uli Gollwitzer
For a whole week I had been checking the weather every day - sometimes even multiple times. Jody, who was heading the organization of the 2014 Icebreaker, was getting tired answering the primary question of all participants: “Hey, with the weather forecast - are we sailing?”.
Saturday morning came and the weather forecast was pretty accurate: Winds around 24 gusting beyond 30 knots! The start got postponed for two hours....
Not everybody was ready to stay on shore all day. Our newest F18 owner Wayne Tetlow and son Austin rigged their boat to face the wind. They surely got tons of good advice of everyone standing around the boat. Hats off for your decision to go out, Wayne and Austin - nothing like doing something as first! A little later Jeff Glenn and his son Brian came out to try the waters as well. Both teams came back, shaking their heads that this was the windiest they have ever sailed in.
There was an attempt to start a race when the wind dropped a little, but as everybody got dressed, the wind was back to full force. Two boats each from the Thistle and the Star fleets went out - very respectable as well considering the strong winds. Everyone agreed that racing in these conditions would not have been reasonable.
After a very opulent dinner prepared by the Thistle fleet we listened to the live band of a friend and sailor Brian Brieden. I heard, that the night got long and even Christy Higgins has been seen/heard on stage!
Sunday morning we were still facing sporty conditions, however, there was no doubt that we would go out. The winds were 16 - 18 knots in the first and 18-22 in the second race, both with significant puffs. In both races were many lead changes between Jeff Rehm and John Bauldry, Kelly and Joe Buchert and Uli Gollwitzer (me) who was sailing with Crescent Clubmember Eric Brattinga (Prindle 16 owner). Unfortunately exactly those three boats missed the offset mark on the first round of the first lap and were out of the race for the podium.
Kudos go to Brianna and Wayne Tetlow. Brianna sailed her first regatta ever that day and despite not admitting it, we think, she actually liked it. Favoured by the mistakes of the three fastest boats they ended up being the fastest F18, too! Jeff and son Brian won the regatta overall. Nice job of Ron Kramer and Steve Anderson also on going out and playing with the wind. The whole fleet got compliments from other sailors, how well we handled the boats in these windy conditions.
A special thank you to the Thistle fleet #2 whose guests we were on this regatta. They did an outstanding job putting together a really nice event!
This was the last CRAM race of the season. Hope to see you all at the CRAM banquet on 15th of November and for lots of races next year.