Winter conditions for Laser Midwinters West

Published on March 31st, 2014

It was a tough three days for the 85 boats racing in the Laser Midwinters West, hosted by Richmond Yacht Club/ SFBAy on March 28-30. The unsettled weather conditions made for a long event for racers and race committee.

On day one, a cloying gently shifting breeze saw the “Cat in the Hat” flag hoisted pretty regularly. The Radial’s aggressive starting – two generals – also saw an escalation to I-flag and the dreaded black flag. In second race the wind shifted in from the Gate, picked up to maybe 15 with an ebb tide chop. Some racers crashed & got their mast stuck in the Southampton Shoals mud. Friday still got in 3 races.

Saturday started out rainy, stayed rainy and shifty enough for a shore side postponement. After an hour’s delay the rain abated and the RC dragged everyone out for one light air affair race.

Sunday the front passed through, providing good breeze, tons of sun and three great races in 10-15 knot breezes – with maybe 22 in just one puff.

In the 52 boat strong Radials local knowledge paid off. In the 7-race series, SF Bay native Claire Dennis won over Christopher Weis on a throw out tiebreaker, with five of the top ten Radials carrying Bay Area burgees.

Sailing skill prevailed over local knowledge amongst the 32 hotly competitive full rig Lasers. In the 7-race series, Seattle’s Frederick Vranizan edged out Greg Martinez of Texas Corinthian by a point. Canadian Ian Elliott finished third.

Full results:

Report by John Dukat

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