Race Report by Madeline Gill for North Sails
The VX One Winter Series wrapped up this past weekend with 3 days of tight racing hosted by the Sarasota Sailing Squadron. Thanks to an experienced group of volunteers on the Race Committee and a continued efficiency gain from the MarkSetBots, the fleet powered through 13 races.
Friday’s conditions tested each team’s preparedness as the northerly breeze built a bit more than was forecast. Sailing clean and just conservatively enough was the name of the game in the solid 18-20 knot breeze and 2-3’ chop. Jim Ward, at the helm of Destiny’s Bounty, was the dominant force of the day with only 4 points in 3 races.
Saturday brought a beautifully moderate breeze with only one race touching down into fluky territory. The key of the day was sailing fast and in phase with the shifts, which wasn’t always easy with a 25 boat fleet and only 0.65 nautical mile beats. No boat won more than a single race, but Chris Alexander’s Counterproductive won the day by staying focused and finding passing lanes even after congested start lines got the best of them.
Sunday’s breeze started off light but built steadily throughout the day. Most of the pressure and angle came from course left, but short-lived righties periodically came through and mixed the fleet up. Ian Maccini’s Blue Lobster, Paul Murphy’s Alternative Facts, and Emily Billing’s #284 had moments of glory and each posted their first bullet of the event.
Winning the event was Chris Alexander with Madeline Gill and Kate O’Donnell on Counterproductive. Second place went to Jim Ward with Jeff Eiber and Lynda Bryant on Destiny’s Bounty. Rounding out the podium was Tim Pitts with Tim Desmond on Leatherback Mutiny.
Congratulations Doug Clark, series overall winner.