Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

This year, we had one of our best-ever Spring Foward Womens Sailing Races on the Intracoastal Waterway in St. Augustine, Florida. Chilly weather and high winds made it a fast, exciting race. Boats tore sails, ran aground, dropped out, or reefed and kept sailing. Crew wore gloves, pfd’s and even thermal underwear for this Springtime sailing race.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

20-25 Knots of Wind, Strong Current

Eleven boats and crew registered for this year’s Spring Foward Race – yes, intentional misspelling. The St. Augustine Sailing Sisters sponsor three sailboat races a year, with the goal of having few or no men on board during the races.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

The Course

The course was four laps from near Marker 57 on the Intracoastal Waterway North of St. Augustine, proceeding North toward Boating Club Road. Yellow buoys marked the North and South turning points. A gate for the start/finish line and every pass was set between the committee boat and Marker 55.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Entrants Changed by the Minute

Our all female crew aboard Rendezvous with Destiny, a 36 Jeanneau Sun Odyssey for the 2020 St. Augustine Sailing Sisters Spring Foward Race. We listened to the radio as the competitor list changed by the minute.

All-Female boats were Veria, Rendezvous With Destiny, and Snowgoose. Snowgoose withdrew due to running aground.

Mixed Crew boats were Ariel, Estelle, Flapjack Octopus, Pura Vida, Flamingo 1, Fireball, Another Option, and Olive Oil. Some would fly spinnakers. Before the race began, Another Option withdrew due to a torn sail.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Our Strategy

Our strategy was to get off the dock at 11:00 a.m. and get everyone comfortable with the boat’s motion. We had a light lunch. It was chilly, so we wanted everyone to have enough energy to stay warm.

We scoped out the course and tide, and did some practice tacks and sail trim. The plan was that by the time the race began, everyone would be comfortable with the motion of the boat and the rhythm of changing tacks.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Traffic on the Course

A barge and tug came through the readying fleet while we ate; she was the down-bound vessel as well as holding restricted ability to maneuver right-of-way. Later, during the race, another tug would come right down through the middle of the course! We hailed them on the radio to explain where we we headed, and they held off for us to round our mark.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Spectators!

One of our sailing school vessels stuck around to watch us race. I think they learned a lot from watching all the right-of-way situations develop. It was a great day for them to learn by watching us make the calls and the maneuvers.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Delayed Start

The Committee Boat dragged anchor, so our start was delayed. We used the extra couple minutes to time our speed toward the starting line.

When the race finally began, we were a full minute late to the starting line! To stay away from other boats, I wildly miscalculated the start. However, even if we had started right after the horn, we still would not have gained enough lead to beat Veria or Pura Vida on corrected time.

The moon was full the night before, and the tide was ripping out. Our upwind leg was into the current, our downwind leg with it. We fought valiantly; every port take put us beam-to the current and we lost ground laterally as we gained angle for the starboard tacks.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Exciting Course

On our boat, we laced in a double reef, and flew the entire jib. I questioned that smaller main on every downwind leg, but on every upwind leg, I knew it was the right decision, as well as the safest choice.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Save the Reef

When Rendezvous With Destiny was heading out of the marina to the race course, Lucia’s “Save the Reef” hat provided a pretty funny double entendre. Once the race started, however, every time I thought about shaking out a reef, I just looked at her hat. And kept those reefs in place.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

One of Our Best Races Ever

As captain aboard Rendezvous, I would like to add that of the All-Female boats, we started first, held the lead, and finished first. We came in second on corrected time, but felt like real winners for battling 20-25 knots the entire race. It was one of the most exciting races in which we have participated!

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Tacking and Tacking and Tacking

We saw a lot of rails in the water, and admired Flamingo 1’s brilliant pink spinnaker on the downwind legs.

Beyond that, what I can tell you is that we tacked dozens and dozens of times. I carried us to shallow water on each side of the Intracoastal. Every tack that put our bow through the current brought us to such a half that I tried to minimize tacks by taking advantage of the whole course.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

PFD’s on the Rail and Bow

With the wind NNE, there was not much interference from the shoreline on the Eastern side of the channel. Occasionally, we caught some bad air off that side, but not nearly as much as when the sea breeze kicks in later in the day in warmer months.

At the windward mark, we carried very gentle gybes. At the leeward mark, we hardened up before tacking. We were careful to go through the gate between the committee boat and the mark at every pass.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Long Race, Tired Crew

The course was shortened to three laps, probably due to the high winds. We took precautions – keeping nearly everyone in the cockpit. Also, when anyone went forward to skirt the jib, they wore a pfd.

We had to rotate sail trim positions a couple times due to wearing out the crew! Even with long tacks, we maintained 5-7 knots at all times, so we reached the other side of the course pretty quickly. I wish we knew how many tacks we executed. We never lost the jib or let it flap even once.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Our Crew

On our boat, we had RoseAnn Points, the majority owner of St. Augustine Sailing. St. Augustine Sailing crew members Stephanie, Nancy, and Rebecca, Elise from St. Augustine Sailing and Lucia, a prospective sail school candidate.

Our Sailing crew assist on charters as well as enjoy crew-only sails to gain experience on the water. It’s an opportunity to log some miles and hours before owning a boat, or between classes to perfect skills.

Stephanie trimmed the main most of the race. Nancy, Rebecca, and Elise trimmed and tailed the jib sheets. Lucia observed and kept the winch handle heading to the next trimmer.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Victory Lap

When the race was over, Stephanie took the helm and “raced” to the windward mark for the experience of running the boat with a double reef, in high winds, with unpredictable currents. Later, she said that was her favorite part of the day!

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Results

All-Female first: Veria, a 36′ Luders yawl, Brianne Petit-Muller at helm (above, far left). Second: Rendezvous With Destiny, a Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 36 with Kim Walther (me, second from left) at helm. Third was Snow Goose, a Beneteau 351 Oceanis with Vicki Woltner at the helm.

For Mixed Crew, Pura Vida, a J-109 took first with Julie Long at the helm. In second Fireball, a CW Hood 32 with Angie Ullman at helm. Third place Olive Oyl a 28′ Alerion Express with Piper Blackford at the helm. Those three raced non-spinnaker. Fourth place Flamingo 1 with Jill Kennon at helm, spinnaker. Fifth place Estelle a Jeanneau Sun Odyssey with Carola Coopoer at the helm. Sixth place Ariel, a Hunter 386 with Kathleen Floryan at the helm. Another Option and Flapjack Octopus registered but did not start.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

St. Augustine Sailing Sisters

The St. Augustine Sailing Sisters’ goal is to engage, empower, and help women excel – and to improve ourselves and our community.

“SASS” is a local group of sailing women who encourage each other to see more, do more, be more and improve ourselves and others in our community.”

“Our mission is to ENCOURAGE women to join the sailing community; ENGAGE women who sail to take the helm; and EMPOWER women to race to help us raise awareness and funds for organizations that help female victims of abuse.”  

​SASS sponsors this race, as well as the Wendy Thompson Memorial Race in May and the Bikini Race in August. You can register for these races on the St. Augustine Yacht Club website. To become a sponsor for any of the benefit races, there’s more information on the St. Augustine Sailing Sisters website.

Last year’s Bikini Race benefitted the Betty Griffin Centre Shelter for Domestic Violence and Abuse and REthreaded that benefits survivors of human trafficking.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

Women on the Water

St. Augustine Sailing, who provided the boat for our all-female crew’s entry, has designed a program for women to learn to sail and perfect their sailing skills. The Women on the Water program features female captains – including me! – who provide instruction and encouragement to female sailors.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

What to Read Next

Why You Should Take Sailing Classes From A Recognized School – my article giving you some reasons why credentialed schools are best.

Already know how to sail and need to rent a boat? Or you haven’t learned yet, and want to rent one with a captain? Finding a Boat to Rent // There’s an App for That Too // Boat Rental Apps For both of us, if you use my discount code “KIMWA1,” we both get $100 off our next boat rental at Sailo! Yippee!

Stream2Sea has generously given me a discount code “DeepWH” for you to use at the checkout at checkout to save 10% on ocean-safe sunscreens as well as shampoo, conditioner, sting relief, and UPF clothing. We wear Stream2Sea on board to do our part in saving the reefs and all waters.

female sailing race, Spring Foward Womans Sailing Race 2020 // St. Augustine Sailing Sisters // St. Augustine, Florida

About

Leave a Comment

WP2Social Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com
Application-Confirmation 1.0 Verify-File 013e980104dec2d39acba78865f09e1e316adccd