Captain’s Log: Stardate 10442.2
Every once in a while, you have a race where you really say to yourself “Boy, am I glad I did that” and a race where you say to yourself “Damn, I wish I had did that.” Last night’s Wednesday Night Race was a combination of both.

After an almost perfect start, we followed Jeepers’ tactics and went to the right side of the course – which would have been the right move had we been there five minutes earlier (when Jeepers was there.) Instead, any gains we had were mostly lost rounding the upwind mark. Our chute work had to be good in order to gain some ground.

Our set went fine (OK, it was backwards, but why should everyone else get to see the graphics all the time and not us?) and the winds started changing… shifting… gusting. To our port, USS Exuberance tried a jibe and lost their chute in the process. I turned around to look at the conditions…

“Get that chute down now!”

Behind us, the water was white-capping, but it was what was behind that which had me concerned. Black, flat water. High winds. And it was coming our way. Fast.

The crew of the Enterprise scrambled at Red Alert (except one, who I think has learned his lesson) and did an excellent job of doing what needed to be done in a hurry. Commanders Dave and Jory, along with Lt. Mitch, did a superb job of getting the chute under control and down before it hit.

And hit it did. We were doing Warp 8.2 on the main alone. Just slightly ahead was USS Tolo, who surprisingly kept their chute up during the initial blast of wind, only to broach and lose control a few seconds later. In fact, at least two other boats broached. At least three spinnakers were ripped. -- “Boy, am I glad I did that.”

And, as I learned later, a crewperson on USS Excalibur swears she saw a tornado funnel down from the skies to the Northeast of us. (There was a confirmed report of a small twister in New Jersey on the evening news.)

Winds clocked back down slightly and we put up the Number 2 on the primary track. Screaming along at Warp 7, we made our way towards the finish line. Unfortunately, the wind clocked down a little more in the last mile of the race to the point where we could have successfully flown the Number 1 – which can’t go up on the secondary track. “Damn, I wish I had did that.”

We crossed the line first and corrected into fourth, which wasn’t much of a surprise as Time on Time is meant to work on dying wind conditions, not increasing ones. We returned home with nothing broken and, more importantly, nobody hurt.