The E-Scow season is now in full swing. On Wednesday, November 12, we had six E-Scows racing one lap short courses off the club. The fleet had to wait about an hour for the sea breeze to fill in, probably late because of the morning fog.
Because we started in light air, the course was short and it got crowded when E-Scows converged at the weather mark as the wind increased to 10 knots. Since going left was fastest upwind, it meant a lot of port tackers coming to the mark. Since we use rabbit starts, the rabbit was disadvantaged going right – and late starters had an upwind advantage. Downwind, either right or left paid off depending on wind shifts and velocity. Left paid off more often but caused some close calls as boat jibbed at the weather mark.
The fleet is still discussing the advantages of rabbit compared to three minute starts, longer weather legs and twice around through a gate and then finish line. We are hoping to get a better skipper consensus prior to leaving the dock.
With a short course, several E-Scows were aggressive on the course, which is not in the friendly spirit of leisurely afternoon informal racing. We had 21 skippers and crews on six boats.