Golden Bear

Last weekend, the SBYSF(Santa Barbara Youth Sailing Foundation), myself included, drove up to Treasure Island near San Francisco to compete in the high school sailing event The Golden Bear Regatta. It is a two day event in which around seventy high school teams compete in a series of three or more races. The event was held in clipper cove in between Treasure Island and the bay bridge.

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We arrived at the event at eight thirty to check in and get our charter boat. Our boat was then inspected to make sure it was in proper working order and then we were given our sails. We then moved our boat to the end of a long line of boats waiting to be put in the water. When our turn came, we rolled our boat down the launch ramp, lifted it off the dolly, and pushed it in the water. With our sails half way up, we rocked the boat over to the nearest tie up spot on the adjacent dock. With the boat in the water and all the paperwork in order, we returned to our team area by the rocks to get changed into our gear. At ten, there was a meeting to discuss the proceedings for the day. After the meeting which was over by ten thirty, we made our way over to our boat, raised the sails, and pushed off the dock.

When we got on the water, the first thing we did was assess the wind condition and sea state and set up the boat accordingly. The first race would take place at eleven, however it was delayed until about twelve thirty due to shifty wind conditions.

Eventually, the wind shifted to a stable westerly breeze and we started racing. Our first race was a windward, offset, leeward, windward, offset, finish down wind. We did not have a particularly good start, but during the race, we made up a few boats at a time. We finished in seventh out of thirty two boats in our fleet. Our second race went better than our first, we started in the middle of the fleet and finished half a boat length behind the first place boat, coming away with a respectable second place. All in all we had a fantastic two days of racing in a beautiful location. I am looking forward to sailing in our local event next week in Santa Barbara.

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