We’ve had an interesting first day of the SB20 Nationals in Dun Laoghaire. We left HYC at 8:30 this morning to get across the bay in time for registration and safety checks before the first gun at 12:55. We had anticipated a broad reach over but with the wind a bit more west of the forcasted direction we couldn’t fly the kite, resulting in a slightly later arrival at RIYC. Never the less we still had plenty of time to put the final touches to the boat and submit the neccesary paperwork.
After a recalled start, the fleet got away at a second attempt and we found ourselves in a clean lane off the line. This was our first race in the SB20 so we were still tinkering with settings, by the time we got in the groove we had slipped back slightly. At the top mark we rounded just off the leading pack. We gybed immediately and found ourselves in pressure which those who stood on missed. This brought us up to 3rd at the leeward and by the end of the next upwind we were 2nd. Downwind was a game of snakes and ladders and a nightmare for Gordon on tactics to deal with. We crossed the line in 5th place, which we were quite pleased with for a first attempt.
The next two races really showed us how small mistakes can make you pay in such a competitve fleet. Despite good starts we had issues with the kite in both races and finished outside the top ten. We’re lying twelfth overall tonight but with the lessons we’ve learned we’ll come back stronger tomorrow.