Orange Coffee Pot Regatta
On Saturday, May 31st, I raced in the 2014 Orange Coffee Pot Regatta at the Surf City Yacht Club. The Orange Coffee Pot regatta is one of my favorite events every year; it is the OLDEST Laser regatta in the World and has been raced for since 1972. The winner each year gets this really cool orange coffee pot that's mounted on a stand with the list of all of the winners. Lots of big names have won this event, so it's cool to race for it each year.
This year, we had 17 full rigs and 15 radials registered. Seven races were sailed in 18-20 knots out of the NE with some chop. We sailed modified windward/leeward courses two times around.
There were a lot of talented local sailors at the event, and I was fortunate enough to take home the title, winning the coveted Orange Coffee Pot!
Next up for me is some E-Scow sailing for the rest of the summer. But I will definitely be back for this great event next year.
Sailing Away and Cruising to the Jackpot: Hitting it Big on the Cruise
In this day and age, yachts and sailboats are seen as symbols of luxury, a sign of an adventurous life away from the mind-numbing confines of the urban jungle. Surrounded by unpredictable currents and framed by the expansive sky, captains and helmsmen learn to respect the whims of the air and the sea. Meanwhile, there could be any number of memorable events happening inside a true luxury yacht. Even the World Poker Tour, another prestigious international sporting event, regularly makes use of special tournament yachts to add variety to its televised poker shows. Of course, yachts and sailboats have a rich and storied competitive sporting history. (Indeed, the word “yacht” itself is ultimately derived from the obscure Dutch root word “jaghen”, which means to “hunt, chase, or pursue”.) Racing yachts and sailboats are inevitably smaller, lighter and faster than their more finely appointed luxury brethren. Every part of a racing yacht – from the rudders and the crossbeams, to the wing mast and the foresail – is geared towards one goal: consistent optimal performance.
Yacht racing and sailing has enjoyed immense popularity from an enthusiastic fanbase that spans pretty much the entire globe. The consistently high level of competition that can be seen at yacht races often result in breathtaking performances. The unique allure of a world-class sailing event has definitely attracted a wide variety of top-notch companies that are more than willing to pounce on a fantastic opportunity to market their brands. As part of a concerted effort to penetrate the burgeoning German online gambling market, the UK-based poker and casino juggernaut Betfair has entered into a strategic partnership with the city of Kiel located in the northern state of Schleswig-Holstein (widely regarded as one of the most liberal and progressive states in Germany) back in December 2011. This made the popular online gambling firm the title sponsor for Kiel Week in June 2012. Kiel Week regularly attracts 5,000 sailors, 2,000 ships and around three million visitors every year, making it the largest annual sailing event in the world. Additionally, Betfair was also the title sponsor of the then-inaugural Multi One Design (MOD) 70 European Tour 2012 event, an international trimaran racing series that spans almost 5,000 miles over five offshore stages.
Ultimately, a yacht is a vessel that brings the captain closer to far-flung places and scenes, accompanied by the breeze and the waves and a sense of adventure.
Day Seven of the Laser Worlds
Not much to report today. We showed up for racing, but there was a very light offshore breeze that we needed to die before the sea breeze could fill in. With a 3 PM cutoff, we were pressed for time. At 12:30, the AP flag came down and the RC sent us out to try to get in one or maybe two races.
After drifting around for a while, the RC tried to start a race a few times, but the breeze was pretty unstable and shifty to set anything up. Right at 2:55, the Gold fleet was able to get their race off! Silver fleet attempted a start right afterwards, but we had a general recall and, therefore, had to abandon for the day.
In the Gold fleet, Robert Scheidt started in the middle of the line and picked his way up the first beat to be winning at mark one. He lead the whole way around and won pretty comfotably to take the victory. The man is incredible. He is 40 years old, and I'm pretty sure this is his 9th Laser World Championship.
From my own perspective, the thing that makes Scheidt incredible is that from the second he leaves the dock until the second his boat is on land, he is working the boat 100%. All other sailors, myself included, will casually sail out. Not him. He's roll-tacking his way out of the harbor like it's the last race of the Olympics. He's very thorough and disciplined in his approach to each race, testing, checking the line, getting a line sight, watching other fleets. He does his homework, and it shows. In my opinion (and many others), the Laser Worlds is the hardest regatta in the world, and this man is at the top of the fleet.
Personally, this regatta was a bit of a disappointment. While mentally and tactically, I think I'm on par with where I was a few years ago, physically I am not where I need to be. Boat handling and big fleet management also need to be improved. It's always tough when you're a little slower because you can never sail your own race. Where you tack is based on someone else. Which way you go is dictated by where you can find clear air, etc. I never felt like I could really get in the front and just sail. I was always reacting to my situation instead of being in control of my own destiny. Though this result could have been expected, it's still a little hard to swallow.
Now it's time to pack and head to the airport for the long trip home. I'll fly Muscat to Dubai, Dubai to JFK. Then it's back to work at the shop.
- Nov 22, 2013 Day Six of the Laser Worlds
- Nov 21, 2013 Day Five of the Laser Worlds
- Nov 20, 2013 Day Four of the Laser Worlds
- Nov 19, 2013 Day Three of the Laser Worlds
- Nov 18, 2013 Day Two of the Laser Worlds
- Nov 17, 2013 Welcome to the Most Competitive Regatta in the World
- Nov 16, 2013 Laser Worlds Start Tomorrow
- Nov 14, 2013 Made it to Oman!