Saturday, July 30, 2011

UKWA Inlands Round 4 Rutland Reservoir, Whitwell, UK June 23rd/24th 2011

After sailing at West Kirby on Tuesday 19th i headed up to the North East where i had an job interview on Thursday so stayed with my Sister before heading down to Rutland Water on Friday morning where i was going to be competing at the 4th Round of the UKWA Inlands at Rutland water on the 23rd and 24th. I arrived down at Rutland around mid day and i decided to rig what i needed for the weekend so i wasn't rushing around on Saturday morning so i got my Starboard Phantom 380 Race with 50cm Vector Maui Fins Canefire fin and rigged my 10.5m Raceboard Sail, 9.5m KA Koncept and 8.3m KA Koncept as i wasn't taking any chances with the last 2 events being so windy. Afterwards i got the barbecue together, had some food before heading to the local pub to have a few pints before getting an early night.

I awoke early on Saturday, checked the forecast which was showing 6-18 knots for the day from the North West and registered for the event. Just after 10 we were called onto the water and had 2 races before lunch in winds around 6 knots gusting up to 14-15knots so i grabbed my 10.5m and hit the water. The racing was tough as there was massive wind shifts of 45-90 degrees and i was particularly finding the shifts tough to read as in the previous event. I would find that i was getting headed by a wind shift so i would tack off and then get headed again so unless it was a massive wind shift i decided not to play the shifts. When i got in for lunch i was finding my neck all the way to my shoulder really painful with the deltoid muscle really tight and i couldn't move my neck to look over my shoulder when looking to tack off on a lay line to a mark in the second race so got one of the other competitors, Keith Atkinson who is a personal trainer to have a look at it and he said in was strained and in spasm so he massaged the muscle to free it up a bit and i sat out the next 2 races (which i would use for my disguard's) and see if i was able to get out for the last race of the day. Luckily the pain subsided a bit with the help of some pain killers and the muscle although still sore and painful freed up a bit so i decided to get out for the last race of the day which was a tower dash between the two concrete towers in the lake. The wind had picked up and was gusting upto 18-20 knots so i changed down to my 9.5m KA Koncept and went onto the water. This race was great fun with a massive upwind leg fully powered up to the first tower and then a big downwind leg to the second tower, then back to the finish by Whitwell. I took it easy so i didn't hurt my shoulder more but on one of the broad reaches on the downwind leg i managed a 25 knot peak on the phantom which for me is new PB max speed so was stoked with that. After a barbecue and a few beers it was an early night for all so we were fresh for racing the next day.

On Sunday the wind was a little lighter, around 5 knots gusting 12 knots and again very shifty so i grabbed my 10.5m and Phantom and went out on the water. My shoulder was still sore but was able to get out on the water so i grabbed my 10.5m Raceboard sail and Phantom and went out on the water and we had 2 races before lunch. It was hard again with the wind shifts so i stuck with the same decision as the day before and not play the shifts unless they were massive. After lunch we had another 2 races in the testing conditions before the race officer called it a day and i for one was happy with that so i was able to give my shoulder a rest.

I finished the event 25th Overall, 1st Overall in the Raceboard Unlimited fleet and 5th master which leaves me 6th overall, 3rd Master and 1st Overall in the Raceboard Unlimited Fleet in the 2011 Inland Ranking if my calculations are correct and also means i have won the Raceboard Unlimited fleet for the year and on course to achieve my goal of finishing in the top 10 for the year.

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