Florida winter trip (career best in Miami!)
A quick re-cap of the two events I did in Florida this winter: the Laser class US Nationals/LOCR in Lauderdale, and the Sailing World Cup in Miami.
These were my first two events of 2019, and I was pretty eager to get back to racing after a great block of training and fitness in the fall.
Lauderdale was very competitive this year, with 89 radials competing and quite a few other Olympic-circuit girls using it as a warm up for the World Cup. We had the full range of conditions that Lauderdale can offer: offshore/along shore gradient – tricky, puffy, shore influenced, and full sea-breeze – big waves and strong breeze. For the most part I had good starts and ok upwind speed in the bigger waves, two things that I had been working on this winter, but I didn’t feel very fast on the downwind in the waves compared with the top girls. We sail in very flat water at home so this is something that I can only work on while on the road, so I guess that made for a create opportunity to practice! I finished the regatta in 15th after 9 races, with one OCS.
Next up was Miami! I drove the yacht club truck and our large 12-boat trailer down from Lauderdale by my self, which was pretty scary! It is a huge load, and navigating among faster cars and in the tiny streets around the sailing center in Miami was pretty stressful. Luckily I managed to get everything there safely and in one piece. I had about a week of training in Miami, and 2 days off before the event, so I could work on a few of the speed issues from Lauderdale and have a little rest before the World Cup racing started.
We had pretty much all the conditions possible in Miami, which is a lot. You can get “off-shore” like conditions from a lot of directions, because we are inside the keys, and this week we did. Lots of light and variable racing, with cloud driven puffs and tricky sheer. I managed to make a lot of good strategic decisions in the first few days and at one point was in the top three in the overall leader-board! I also made a few strategic choices that didn’t go my way, and didn’t manage to have a totally consistent score line over the whole week. Overall though I am very proud, because this World Cup was my career best regatta so far on the Olympic circuit! I had 4 top ten finishes, and until I got a BFD (over-early on a black flag start) on the last day I was projected to qualify for the medal race. In the end I finished 18th overall. I am really proud of how I sailed and am looking forward to the rest of the season!