Dec 5, 2007, 11:08 AM
Post #2 of 47
Good thread idea!
Re: [The Publisher] What was your favorite event in 2007?
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Far and away, I most enjoyed the US Multihull Championship for the Hobie Alter Cup. The event was a US SAILING Championship hosted by the Melbourne Yacht Club in Florida under some terrific conditions. The race management team was top shelf, the administration by both the volunteers from US SAILING and from the host club was superb, and the fleet that qualified for the event through a national ladder series was extremely competitive. The event was sponsored by Rolex and several local businesses like West Marine and Performance Sail and Sport.
I've been fortunate to have been invited to sail as crew in this unique event four times in the last 10-12 years. Catamaran manufacturers support the event by providing new boats every year, which are rotated through the fleet to provide strictly-controlled one-design conditions - you race each heat on a different boat. The rotation system (borrowed from RC boats) has evolved over the years and has reached a pinnacle, in my opinion, providing for the most competitive yet definitive outcome.
The boat selected this year played a role in the level of my enjoyment - it was the Blade F16 manufactured by Vectorworks Marine in Florida. Only one or two of the 20 teams at the event had ever sailed this relatively new platform. The F16 uses a light-weight, high-tech approach in producing a very nimble spinnaker cat that was a joy to sail.
I didn't just enjoy this event because I wound up on the podium, although that was like being handed a cake made of icing. The Alter Cup tops my list each year that I have qualified, even when placing DFL (true story). I love it for the one-design purity and the elimination of factors related to tuning, time on the boat, or the number of tricks you might know about how to sail the boat faster. This year the combination of the people that were at the event, the weather conditions, the quality of the host club and race management, and the gold medal my team took home, all conspired to make that week-long event the standout in a great year of sailing.
Best moment? Waaaaay overstanding A-pin in about 18-knots sustained, in the lead - my skipper says to me, "You're too uptight - can't you just enjoy this moment? We could be in last a heartbeat from now." To make his point, he threw his head back and screamed "WHEEEEEEEEEEEEE!" all the way to the mark. I never laughed so hard.
Formula 18 USA 70