Another report from the Corsair Nationals, this one is from Dave Calvert. He raced on Tom Reese's Corsair 28R, Flight Simulator, with Tom and Robert Remmers. Thank you Dave!
We were in the lower rating PHRF fleet that included three Corsair 28Rs, two Corsair 31s, the new Corsair Cruze 970, and an F-82R. We had not raced against most of these boats so and did not know what to expect. Bob Gleason and Ira Heller, were racing Tri Me, the beautiful new Corsair Cruze 970 with the same rating as the 31R. We knew they would be a strong contender and always one to watch.
Race Day One, Friday, was a 19 mile long distance race from the south end of Pensacola Bay east along the intracostal waterway. The winds were up in the low teens before the 10:45 first start. Our plans to start with a Screacher were aborted because of the close angle in the beginning. Shortly after the Pensacola Beach bridge, we were able to fly the Screacher instead of the jib. We were just behind the Corsair Cruze 970 and the Corsair 31R, Belafonte. In an effort to pass the two boats ahead, we tried double slotting with Screacher and jib. This was the ticket giving the extra speed needed to get in the leeward passing lane and get by the boats ahead.
Along the shore came Tercera, the F-82R in a good wind lane, passing us to windward. Wow! These guys were fast! Soon the winds went aft enough to change to spinnakers. This allowed us to stay ahead of the others and almost catch Tercera at the finish line, with us missing out on line honors by a mere 5 seconds, but correcting out handily on handicap.
On the return long race back the next day, we had much lighter breezes. The wind was aft making for numerous gybes with spinnakers to the finish before the Pensacola Beach Bridge. The guys on Tercera found their groove finishing far enough in front of us to get line honors as well as the win on corrected time. We followed in second.
Later the same day, we regrouped off shore of the Pensacola Yacht Club for two windward/leeward bout races. Realizing now that the boat to beat was Bruce Kuerten and crew on the F-82R, we kept a close eye on them from the start and managed to squeak out two more wins.
Day 3 started out with about a 7 kt breeze, later dropping enough to necessitate a shortened course. Soon after the breeze veered to the southeast and freshened to 8 to 10 kts. We enjoyed three more well run course races in quick succession.
We had our good and bad minutes but managed to retain out top position in the fleet.
John Novak and crew, on Overdo, a Corsair 28R, sailed very well and ended up in third in our class, behind Bruce Kuerten, Larry Shaw and Peter Clay on Tercera. Mike Patterson’s F-31R Belafonte, with local sailor Rick Zern on the crew was fourth. Next was the Corsair Cruze 970 which in my opinion suffered from a handicap rating that is rather tough.
To see more photos from the 2015 Corsair US Nationals & Rendezvous - By Stuart Schaefer Photography CLICK HERE >