Lacking sufficient wind to get any races off on day one of the Oakcliff International Grade 2, race committee and the organizing authority were eager to get in as many races as possible today. The wind was uncooperative for most of the morning, but by noon the racing was in full swing. The excitement of flight one came in the photo finish between Mike Quaglio and Peter Holz. After leading down the last leg, Quaglio was able to edge Holz out with a leeward overlap right at the finish.
The third match of flight three ended with a bit of confusion as Jordan Reece crossed the finish line ahead of Krysztof Rosinski and then failed to respond to Rosinski’s luff. The umpires gave Reece a penalty after he had technically finished the race causing him to take a loss in that match. In the fourth match of the same flight, Magnus Sandberg was given a penalty at the gate mark rounding for taking too much room with the strong current. The umpires then gave him a red flag forcing him to take the penalty immediately for gaining an advantage from the situation.
The fourth and fifth matches of flight four were postponed due to a wind shift in the early afternoon. The unexpected northerly breeze we saw in the morning died as a southwesterly wind filled in on West Harbor. Though the pressure was up and down throughout the afternoon and there were a few storm cells threatening the area, the adequate wind and surprisingly clear skies allowed racing to continue without much break for the duration of the day.
Vladimir Lipavsky got a bit lucky in his match against Taylor Canfield resulting from a slight miscommunication between the umpires and the race committee. Lipavsky was carrying a penalty from the prestart and was then over early. The umpires were unaware that he was clearing the start when he rounded the pin and mistook it for a penalty exoneration and took the yellow flag down. Though there may be some objection vocalized on the race course, once an umpire call is made and a flag has been flown (or taken down) the decision is final. This is something unique to match racing that adds a sometimes unexpected bit of excitement to the racing.
After a long day on the water – completing nine full flights – Will Tiller (NZL) is in the lead with Jordan Reece (AUS), and Taylor Canfield (ISV) rounding out the top three. We are looking forward for some more good racing tomorrow to complete the round robin and continue racing to determine the winner of the Grand Slam Series.
Race Committee working hard to get the courses set just right and maximize race time
Perry (left) and Rosinski (right) sail upwind as the sun gets low in the sky late in the afternoon
Canfield (left) and Tiller (right) sail an exciting match as the two highest ranked skippers in the event