Monday, March 19, 2018

Texas Wrap

After three days of driving, we're back from Texas, and were once again greeted by snow on the ground. I'm not sure what the bigger shock was, though - the temperature differences or the "sticker shock" in the supermarket, where exactly the same food costs 1/3 to 1/2 more. Maybe I can understand that for fresh fruit from Mexico - but for frozen food? Well, at least the selection of vegetarian pizza is better here. Texas is not the best place for vegetarians!

The weather this year was weird, with a lot of cloudy and rainy days. I still got to sail 31 days, about the same as last year, but that included 4 light wind days, and 4 days on South Padre Island. My biggest sail (the 7.8) also was the most used sail, and only 6 of the 31 days were on sails smaller than 7.0 (2 x 5.6, 4 x 6.3).  It's not quite as bad as it might seem, though - since I only sailed slalom gear, I was on the 7.0 race sail in 23 mph wind averages, where I would use a 5.0 on freestyle gear. The two days on the 5.6 had wind averages of 27 and 32 mph.

We got only one "real" speed session this year, and not a single day with northwesterly wind that would have been perfect at the South Bird Island Slicks. On the upside, we sailed a couple of spots for the first time that are great for long distance speed: the North Flats at South Padre Island, and Grassy Point in Corpus Christi. At low water levels, both spots are great for nautical mile and one hour runs, so it's no surprise that 4 of my top 5 sessions for both of these disciplines are from this year. Good practice for the OBX long distance race next month! And maybe all that "big sail" practice will be useful at the US Nationals a week later, where I'll be sailing a 9.0 in the Kona One category. It's cool to see that more than 50 windsurfers are already registered for the US Nationals, including racers from the US, Canada, Denmark, Great Britain, Belgium, FranceBrazil, Poland, Italy, and Germany. The list includes multiple national champions, so the racing should be hot! See you there or in Avon in a few weeks!

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