Maxx Baqustae

2019 Southern Straits race

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The 51st Annual Southern Straits Classic - April 19-21,  is approaching and it's later this year.

The official info from WVYC is here: https://www.wvyc.ca/default.aspx?p=DynamicModule&pageid=374919&ssid=298666&vnf=1 

There is a FB page for the event: https://www.facebook.com/southernstraits/

There is an ongoing discussion on the WVYC Racing FB page:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/WVYCracing/

And about 50 of entries already: https://www.wvyc.ca/Default.aspx?p=DynamicModule&pageid=385410&ssid=304472&vnf=1

There is two-day sport division too. Including Melges 24's etc.

Who else is in?

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Wish we could race this one, unfortunately though it's too early in the season and still waiting for our new sails so it doesn't give us enough time to be competitive :/

What are the usual conditions for this race? Still cold and windy? ^_^

~him

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2 minutes ago, nwrig said:

Sometimes snow level above spreaders, other years not so much....

I never ever do this race in March anymore.  Too old and wise for that nonsense.  I wish they would de-couple this thing from Easter.  It makes it very hard to build a consistent spring schedule with this race floating around from mid-March to late April.  

(And, yes, I know about Easter being a big Canuckistanian holiday.)

 

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18 hours ago, him&her said:

Wish we could race this one, unfortunately though it's too early in the season and still waiting for our new sails so it doesn't give us enough time to be competitive :/

What are the usual conditions for this race? Still cold and windy? ^_^

~him

It's on April 19-21. Very early May is when most clubs have their opening day/sail past are on. And yup, it can get cold in March for Straits and Easter weekend but the last race I did I didn't even put my boots on for the entire race. Even last year's race was mild too. But they have been cold and windy ones over the years like 2009. They canceled racing after they had already starting the race. Our trimmer was completely underwater. Me - as usual - at the back of the bus. But was almost floated out the back under the lifelines. As nav/tactician it was hard to dock at Nanaimo as it was that windy. I saw 57 knots WS on the wind-o-scope. Not looking at much as we were a little busy. But that was 10 years ago now.   

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Isn't it due to be a buster this year?

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41 minutes ago, SloopJonB said:

Isn't it due to be a buster this year?

Yup SJB - 2009.

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As my crew pointed out in '09 as we surfed past Atkinson on the way out with reefed main and chicken kite, steady 17 kts, surfing low 20's .

Better to be at the bar wishing you were out there than being out there wishing you were at the bar...

I think there were videos from a 109 and ICON (ians)

Tucked into West Van one of my better decisions...

Now was it '05 on Cassie when it blew socks at finish?

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DILLIGAF is racing DH.  Why, you ask?  erm....I believe that brain damage (non-contageous) is the only logical excuse. 

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On 2/21/2019 at 3:30 PM, nwrig said:

As my crew pointed out in '09 as we surfed past Atkinson on the way out with reefed main and chicken kite, steady 17 kts, surfing low 20's .

Better to be at the bar wishing you were out there than being out there wishing you were at the bar...

I think there were videos from a 109 and ICON (ians)

Tucked into West Van one of my better decisions...

Now was it '05 on Cassie when it blew socks at finish?

Yup, '05, we retired a mile from the finish - we were seeing gusts in the 50's.  The thinking at the time was that there was a high probability of breaking the boat in that last mile, and we wanted to have a boat to sail for the rest of the year.  Plus we had tea-bagged the bowman and he was complaining about hypothermia.  No-one ever second-guessed that decision.  Most boats that finished were either under deep-reefed main only or headsail only.

Almost got blown sideways onto the gas dock on the way in under power.  Firewalled throttle for about 10 seconds saved it.

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2010 was the year the race was abandoned. 

You can go look up the historical data from the halibut banks buoy. Shortly before the race was called off Halibut Banks recorded two peak gusts of 67kts!

Going out that day was One of the dumbest decisions I have made in my life.

But I happen to be in the area right now and if anybody needs crew let me know!

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10 hours ago, ASP said:

Hows the forecast shaping up?

As of today, NW 10 knots, gusting 15 with sun & showers. Low tide at noon so they'll be able to ride the river out of English Bay.

Wind is supposed to build to 15 to 25 later.

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It's rarely like that - starting the race that year was stupid - 50 knots was forecast.

It was just luck that no-one died that year.

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Swiftsure can get pretty wild just the same, and it's ~around~ the same time...

Hopefully it doesn't. I don't want to die. Or break my house.

~him

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1 hour ago, SloopJonB said:

It's rarely like that - starting the race that year was stupid - 50 knots was forecast.

It was just luck that no-one died that year.

You're right. 

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Looks like a good westerly flow for the race. Getting up to 30knots near entrance around midnight for the rip home to finish. 

Good luck everyone. 

Screenshot_20190418-120303.png

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On 4/16/2019 at 1:20 PM, Baldur said:

You're right. 

If I remember correctly the weather briefing the night before was 40ish. EC updated it in the morning for 50. That said: It's your call going out there or not. Or it used to be anyway.

That said I saw 57 knots but I wasn't looking at steam gauge much. We wiped out ourselves and our main trimmer went totally underwater which was hard to do on that boat. Forever thus he was dubbed "dunk". As usual, I was at the back of the bus giving helpful instructions but I was almost floated out the back. I was caught by the stern lifelines otherwise I migh have been gone. The crew might have not noticed, as they were busy too, I might be a goner utile they figured out I'm not there anymore. Caught the runner when wiping out on the other side. Down for count on starboard. Got sorted, dropped the main and started the engine but that was an adventure too. We watched one of our competitors, A Farr 40 having a hard time too. Cletus Currie was completed rolled and being the naviguesser/Snacktician I was in the nav station listening to the VHF that were a lot of people in trouble. We ended up in Nannymo YC and it was quite difficult to get in there. 

I did a private seminar for a couple of boats on Monday and my models for wind/weather were still up in the air at that point as the coast is very unstable. But looking at laast night and this morning again we are getting biblical rain now through Friday morning and coming from the SE. I expect a drastic change/shift Friday morning to the NW. At race time I expect 5 to 15 but building in the 25ish up course to Sisters. That said this is frontal ridge and there is a good chance, in this case, go light Saturday evening/night going a light SW or die completely until the SE frontal wave arrives.

I'm out to the club shortly myself. 

  

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40 minutes ago, Maxx Baqustae said:

If I remember correctly the weather briefing the night before was 40ish. EC updated it in the morning for 50. That said: It's your call going out there or not. Or it used to be anyway.

That said I saw 57 knots but I wasn't looking at steam gauge much. We wiped out ourselves and our main trimmer went totally underwater which was hard to do on that boat. Forever thus he was dubbed "dunk". As usual, I was at the back of the bus giving helpful instructions but I was almost floated out the back. I was caught by the stern lifelines otherwise I migh have been gone. The crew might have not noticed, as they were busy too, I might be a goner utile they figured out I'm not there anymore. Caught the runner when wiping out on the other side. Down for count on starboard. Got sorted, dropped the main and started the engine but that was an adventure too. We watched one of our competitors, A Farr 40 having a hard time too. Cletus Currie was completed rolled and being the naviguesser/Snacktician I was in the nav station listening to the VHF that were a lot of people in trouble. We ended up in Nannymo YC and it was quite difficult to get in there. 

I'm out to the club shortly myself. 

  

 

Did that race myself and had a horrible, not very good, time.  It turns out we were one of the last boats on the course still struggling with #4 up all alone, east of Ballenas, aimed at Atkinson, making 25° leeway and making about 0 VMG.  Three out of nine crew still in shape to sail.  The big boats made it over across to hide in Howe sound apparently.  Headed for Nanaimo just before dawn and got the last room at the Coast.  The deskman said we were the 41st boat to check into a room that night.  

Didn't break anything though.

 

 

 

 

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I was out on the only boat that rounded WG mark on medium course. It was a wild day to say the least. I don't want to be out in 60knots again, but a was comfortable and never felt unsafe, that speaks volume for the crew and boat prep. 

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 Some pics but find lots on the race Southern Straits Annual Yacht Race Wastepook page: 

 

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Pretty interesting top 3 overall for the Medium course.  Puts the cruiser in racer/cruiser...

1.  Dufour 34 (after a 2nd overall at the 67 mile Patos Island Race a few weeks ago)

2.  Hanse 400

3.  Farr 1220

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The Dufour nailed the layline to Sisters from about 12 nm away.  Impressive or just luck? 

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36 minutes ago, Roleur said:

Pretty interesting top 3 overall for the Medium course.  Puts the cruiser in racer/cruiser...

1.  Dufour 34 (after a 2nd overall at the 67 mile Patos Island Race a few weeks ago)

2.  Hanse 400

3.  Farr 1220

Pretty ideal race for those boats, medium to heavy upwind and then medium air downwind. Not too many tacks on the beat. 

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30 minutes ago, dash34 said:

The Dufour nailed the layline to Sisters from about 12 nm away.  Impressive or just luck? 

If it was luck, then they are having a lucky streak.  At Patos they were the only boat to round Patos clockwise and made huge gains.  

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Something very wrong with the local PHRF of the Dufours.  A fairly modern design that is dimensionally, not all that different from a J/109 or Bene 36.7 (albeit with less draft and SA), yet they have a PHRF of 135, roughly the same as a J/30 or Laser 28.

In Patos, they were in the same div as the J/30s and HF27 correcting out almost an hour ahead of the HF27 and 1.5 hours ahead of the top J/30.

In SS on the weekend, they rounded Sisters and finished ahead of or in company with a Schock 35 and Farr 1220 (who both placed well and rate about a min/mile faster ) and again corrected out an hour or so ahead.  They also finished less than 10 minutes behind the top two J/109s.

'Nuff said.

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50 minutes ago, 12 metre said:

Something very wrong with the local PHRF of the Dufours.  A fairly modern design that is dimensionally, not all that different from a J/109 or Bene 36.7 (albeit with less draft and SA), yet they have a PHRF of 135, roughly the same as a J/30 or Laser 28.

In Patos, they were in the same div as the J/30s and HF27 correcting out almost an hour ahead of the HF27 and 1.5 hours ahead of the top J/30.

In SS on the weekend, they rounded Sisters and finished ahead of or in company with a Schock 35 and Farr 1220 (who both placed well and rate about a min/mile faster ) and again corrected out an hour or so ahead.  They also finished less than 10 minutes behind the top two J/109s.

'Nuff said.

I was curious about this when I read another complaint about the rating on Wastebook and did a bit of research.  They seem to be rated around 135 in several places.  One wonders if they are a bit under-canvassed and go well in stronger breeze but not at other times.  Both Straits and Patos had decent breeze this year -  Patos short course was finished 2 hours faster than our elapsed time last year, and we had the shortest elapsed time in quite a few years.  The fact that Rubato did very well as well is an indication that this might have been the case - she isn't a great performer in light air but does well in breeze.

Remember the year that the Nonsuch catboat won Straits?  I think the boat was short-handed too.

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There are several variants.  I'm guessing that this one is a Dufour 34 Performance.  Looks like it is 123 in Lake Ontario.  135 to 123 probably wouldn't have made any difference to the results in Straits.  Funny that no-one is complaining about the rating on Ross MacDonald's X-41.B)

Capture.JPG

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10 minutes ago, dash34 said:

I was curious about this when I read a complaint about the rating on Wastebook and did a bit of research.  They seem to be rated around 135 in several places.  One wonders if they are a bit under-canvassed and go well in stronger breeze but not at other times.  Both Straits and Patos had decent breeze this year -  Patos short course was finished 2 hours faster than our elapsed time last year, and we had the shorted elapsed time in quite a few years.  The fact that Rubato did very well as well is an indication that this might have been the case - she isn't a great performer in light air but does well in breeze.

Remember the year that the Nonsuch catboat won Straits?  I think the boat was short-handed too.

All true, but Rubato doesn't rate anywhere near 135 - closer to the J/109s

Yes, the Dufour has less horsepower and draft than the J/109 and Bene 36.7 so light air is probably not the Dufours forte.  But still, 135?  I noticed US Sailing has them at 123 on Lake Ontario - not sure what to make of that to be honest.

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It will be interesting to see how the boat performs in lighter air regattas.  Thetis Island is next.  

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11 minutes ago, dash34 said:

There are several variants.  I'm guessing that this one is a Dufour 34 Performance.  Looks like it is 123 in Lake Ontario.  135 to 123 probably wouldn't have made any difference to the results in Straits.  Funny that no-one is complaining about the rating on Ross MacDonald's X-41.B)

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123 or 135 would make no difference since they corrected an hour ahead of everyone.  Even if they are a light air turd, a PHRF of 100 max seems reasonable to me.

As for Ross I'm not sure what you're getting at.   He was doing a horizon job on the fleet until near the finish when it looked like the Farr 30 closed to within 30 minutes - and Ross still corrected out only 11th overall   With a PHRF of 24, the X-41 is quite similar to many other local 40s like the CM1200s and Taylor 40.

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1 minute ago, dash34 said:

It will be interesting to see how the boat performs in lighter air regattas.  Thetis Island is next.  

Indeed.

FWIW another Dufour won Round Saltspring last year which isn't a good yard stick since it was a crap shoot with the tide gate near the finish - but a competitor said he felt the Dufour moved quite well in light air.

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9 hours ago, 12 metre said:

As for Ross I'm not sure what you're getting at.   He was doing a horizon job on the fleet until near the finish when it looked like the Farr 30 closed to within 30 minutes - and Ross still corrected out only 11th overall   With a PHRF of 24, the X-41 is quite similar to many other local 40s like the CM1200s and Taylor 40.

When you are a rockstar sailor and do well, no-one questions your rating.  When you aren't a rockstar, if you do well the first thing everyone wonders about is your rating. 

The Dufour did a horizon job on the fleet on handicap.  If Ross was on that boat, would people be questioning its rating?  But for the usual crapshoot at Atkinson, Ross should have won that race based on how well the boat was sailed.

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29 minutes ago, dash34 said:

When you are a rockstar sailor and do well, no-one questions your rating.  When you aren't a rockstar, if you do well the first thing everyone wonders about is your rating. 

The Dufour did a horizon job on the fleet on handicap.  If Ross was on that boat, would people be questioning its rating?  But for the usual crapshoot at Atkinson, Ross should have won that race based on how well the boat was sailed.

Denny was on Ross' boat too. I did a private run up coming up to the race (Monday) for a couple of programs/boats. One of them was a SC50and right off the start and took the current advantage as it was likely 2 knots maybe? Ross definitely won the start but banged the right afterward. By Atkinson, both Ross, the SC 50, the Dufour were higher than anyone. but apparently, there were some holes that some couldn't get out of. SC50 retired and maybe Ross' X41 had some trouble too. It happens and hadn't spoken to them since.   

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1 hour ago, dash34 said:

When you are a rockstar sailor and do well, no-one questions your rating.  When you aren't a rockstar, if you do well the first thing everyone wonders about is your rating. 

The Dufour did a horizon job on the fleet on handicap.  If Ross was on that boat, would people be questioning its rating?  But for the usual crapshoot at Atkinson, Ross should have won that race based on how well the boat was sailed.

Okay, I see what you meant.  I thought you may be hinting that the PHRF on the X-41 is soft.

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2 hours ago, Maxx Baqustae said:

Denny was on Ross' boat too. I did a private run up coming up to the race (Monday) for a couple of programs/boats. One of them was a SC50and right off the start and took the current advantage as it was likely 2 knots maybe? Ross definitely won the start but banged the right afterward. By Atkinson, both Ross, the SC 50, the Dufour were higher than anyone. but apparently, there were some holes that some couldn't get out of. SC50 retired and maybe Ross' X41 had some trouble too. It happens and hadn't spoken to them since.   

It looked like the winning strategy on the upwind was to go right up to around Roger Curtis, then hard left.  According to my son the decision to go hard left was tough because the wave direction made starboard tack painfully slow.  That might have been a clue that the wind would back on the left side of the course.  Boats that stuck it out to the left (but not too far left) did well. Heavy displacement boats could probably hack the starboard tack awfulness better than light displacement boats, which might explain why heavier boats took the hardware in the medium course this year.  It looked like the Ross 930's didn't like the conditions at all, though the Dash did ok.

I haven't analyzed the downwind in detail but it looked like middle was the way to go.

Anyway, enough armchair quarterbacking.  Congrats to everyone who participated.  

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1 hour ago, dash34 said:

It looked like the winning strategy on the upwind was to go right up to around Roger Curtis, then hard left.  According to my son the decision to go hard left was tough because the wave direction made starboard tack painfully slow.  That might have been a clue that the wind would back on the left side of the course.  Boats that stuck it out to the left (but not too far left) did well. Heavy displacement boats could probably hack the starboard tack awfulness better than light displacement boats, which might explain why heavier boats took the hardware in the medium course this year.  It looked like the Ross 930's didn't like the conditions at all, though the Dash did ok.

I haven't analyzed the downwind in detail but it looked like middle was the way to go.

Anyway, enough armchair quarterbacking.  Congrats to everyone who participated.  

Hurricane did very well on the beat to Sisters and rounded pretty close to Dominatrix and other faster boats.  They sailed more towards the mainland coast IIRC.

Hurricane seemed to lose it on the return leg, staying closer to the Island shore on stbd than the majority of the fleet and gybed later towards Atkinson.  They were certainly the most Southerly boat.  Looked like they sailed quite a few more additional miles than the rest of the fleet that looked like they had a nice port lift sailing towards Bowen.  The top boats looked like they just sailed on port all the way down to about Bowen then had a few gybes before the finish.

On the other hand, the Farr 30 threw in a lot of gybes, but did stay fairly close to he middle.  It seemed like Ross pretty much straight lined it and really legged out on the Farr while they were doing all their gybes.  From the tracker it looked like he was the better part of 10 miles ahead at that point.  The Farr gained quite a bit back coming into the Pt Atkinson crapshoot and only finished 1/2 hour or so behind.

Ultraman 3 did so so on the way out on their new to them boat, and I'm sure they don't have her dialled in yet - but she sure steamrolled everyone on the downhill slide and ended up placing quite well.  Tracker showed her often at around 13 kts - a good 2-3 knts faster than most.

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For sure there was more breeze in the middle on the downwind, we held a pretty long starboard gybe in the middle of the straight(almost to layline) and were consistently in 22-28 knots of breeze at around 1:30 AM. 

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Sounds like it was near perfect conditions this year.

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4 hours ago, SloopJonB said:

Sounds like it was near perfect conditions this year.

Right... So much for talks of dismasting and death. 

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On 4/22/2019 at 2:24 PM, 12 metre said:

Ultraman 3 did so so on the way out on their new to them boat, and I'm sure they don't have her dialled in yet - but she sure steamrolled everyone on the downhill slide and ended up placing quite well.  Tracker showed her often at around 13 kts - a good 2-3 knts faster than most.

Upwind in breeze we need to do a lot of work figuring out the boat and tuning the rig for the conditions.  It was only our fifth sail and second time in any wind.  Boat is powered up in any breeze.  We also had crap on the bulb and had to do two back downs with a huge branch and bull kelp coming off.  Helm is very neutral and didn't give off vibrations.  Must pay attention to boat speed and polars.

Downwind, we were much better.  Rounded Sisters at 9:30pm-ish 14th around.  Botched the initial hoist with the A2 and went with the A3.  Were sailing well (even gybed), but later had a wipe out due to the wave action.  Dropped and saved the kite, gybed Main only (ripping the mainsheet attachment off the boom - thankful for the safety strop), hoisted the S5 Frac chicken kite and then made off like scolded banshees, hitting 17.8kts on the surfs and regularly in the teens passing 8 boats on the run.  We stayed mainly in the middle and went wide on approach and pipped Dolce and Rubatto on the line crossing 3rd at 2:30am,  but correcting 13th.  11 hours up.  5 hours down.

Ross on the X-41 was sailing in a completely different class than the rest of the Medium Course.  He was at Sangster when the rest of us were at about Ballenas.  The wind was light for him at Pt. Atkinson finish, whereas we rode the kite all the way in at speed.

Going to be heaps of fun on the Outside.  Bashing our way to the Nawhitti Bar for a week, not so much...

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