Author Topic: Top Gun Regatta on Lake Norman  (Read 1334 times)

TimPorter

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Top Gun Regatta on Lake Norman
« on: May 24, 2016, 01:50:46 PM »
"The annual Top Gun regatta is the only solo regatta on Lake Norman.  Up for grabs is an entire year of bragging rights.  You have no crew to blame for poor spinnaker hoists or bad jibes.  Eight brave souls entered the race but only seven showed up for the start, as one decided the forecast for 3-4 knots of breeze was too much and stayed home to drink a cold one and watch some NASCAR.  The seven competitors were made up of 3 U20s, a J70, a Hunter 23.5, a J-24, and a Starwind 19.  The PHRF rates ranged from 117-279. 

More than one competitor was scratching their head trying to figure out where the windward mark was.  As it turned out the start was pretty close to a beam reach.  The start was fairly uncontested as everyone was content to just find some space on the line.  Right off the start you had two schools of thought.  One was to point the bow towards the next mark and keep the jib up; the other, go high hoping to be able to fall off and fly the spinnaker.  It turned out the wind never let those electing for option 2 to get the chute up.  Mighty Mouse, a U20, rounded the first mark in front, followed by a pack of other boats including the other two U20s, the J-70, and the J-24.  The next leg was a close hauled dash.  After rounding the second mark all the boats were able to fly their chutes.  With only one jibe and not many tactical options, it was a boat speed contest.  Around the third mark some boats elected to drop the spinnaker and others decided to try and fly them.  The wind had clocked around and those that tried to keep the spinnaker up lost a little ground. 

At this point we had two competing wind lines from the North and South fighting each other, with nothing in between.  On this two mile leg, the gains and losses were made by finding the puffs and staying in them as long as you could.  After rounding the last mark the race got very interesting.  Mighty Mouse was still in the lead followed by another U20, U too.  Followed close behind by the J-24, a U20, and the J-70.  At one point boats were 100 yards apart heading the same direction, one with the spinnaker up on Port and the other beating on Starboard.  Towards the end Mighty Mouse was clinging to a decent lead but was parked in between the breeze lines.   He sat helpless watching all the boats behind close in with their spinnakers up.  Eventually the Southern breeze pushed up and Mighty Mouse was able to catch it and cross the line first, followed by another U20, U too…, and third a well sailed Hunter 23.5, Celtic Pride."

Don Corey

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Re: Top Gun Regatta on Lake Norman
« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2016, 09:03:12 PM »
Hey Tim, congrats on the win and thanks for the report.  The U20 is a great boat to singlehand.
Don Corey   #25  fore 
U20 Class member since 1997