Stardate 11538.6

Captain's Log: Stardate 11538.6
Last night marked our first Wednesday Night race of the 2015 season and with SailFlow showing anywhere between 12 and 30 in northerly breeze from Kings Point, I knew we were in for an exciting night. The only downside was it was cold. Really cold. Layers of fleece jackets and foul weather gear cold. It was so cold that....

Wait for it....

Dave wore pants.

We had a total of four boats in our division show up, including the Enterprise. And, after looking at the scratch sheet, this level of participation would seem to be normal now. But, once we unfurled the genoa and accelerated to Warp 6.8, none of that mattered. The crew were back in their positions and the Enterprise was humming with life! We were back, baby!

The course was C-L-C-L, which would provide us with three upwind legs and two downwind legs, along with several maneuvers, but the marks were so close that it felt like the bow was reaching C while the stern was still rounding L.

Our start went well -- right on time at the line, but we had trouble obtaining acceleration. I had wondered if the winches were lubricated well enough, but apparently Lt. Kurt was not. Ceaser maybe could of been faster. Maybe.

"C'mon Kurt! Get that sail in. You had all winter to bulk up!"
"I did. On donuts."


The wind shifted a bit around the first mark, so I thought winging the sails would not be necessary, but when we sailed out of that puff, we should have changed the sails. We thought about it, but we were so close to L, that it wouldn't matter all that much. But it did. We could have gained some more ground.

We rounded the second mark behind the Romulan Battlecruiser Wuestwind and worked our way back upwind again. A few of our tacks were good, but the donuts were beating us.

After the third mark, we wasted no time winging out the sails, thanks to the quick work of Lt. Ellen and Foredeck Captain Dave. The Enterprise accelerated to Warp 7.1 and all was good on board.

Until the jibe.

As we approached the fourth and final mark before the finish leg, the plan was to jibe the main and harden up around the mark. Commander Richard was having trouble pulling the Enterprise's main over and asked for help. So, Ceaser grabbed the boom and gave it a tug as I turned the Enterprise further to the left. The main jibed, and even though that was the plan all along, it somehow took Ceaser by surprise, resulting in what could only be explained as a human catapult situation.

For a moment, Ceaser's body was ignoring gravity. Just for a moment though.

Seeing Ceaser's feet soar above my line of sight and hearing the aerodynamic "whoosh" of a body moving swiftly through the air, it reminded me of the 1978 advertising campaign for Superman: The Movie where they simply stated "You will believe a man can fly."

Except this was the end result:


Most able-bodied, experienced crew persons would come out of this situation doing a reverse tuck and flip, landing on both feet in a crouched position, followed by grabbing a winch handle and grinding in a sail. But Ceaser's un-cat-like reflexes left him on his back and immobile, almost to the point where the rest of the crew considered to chip in and buy him a LifeAlert System.


We eventually got the sails in and Ceaser back to his feet. But, it looked like any chance of catching Wuestwind was now gone and we were destined to finish second across the line. We made our last tack and headed for the finish, with Wuestwind to windward.

And then, amazingly enough, either Wuestwind thought we had to go back to C again or the helmsman was not looking at the committee boat, Wuestwind went windward of the committee boat, completely missing the line! They realized their mistake and turned down to go around, but by then, we were way ahead and the Enterprise crossed the finish line first!

They would correct on us anyway, but it was enormously gratifying to cross first on our first race. Sweet.

As we got the 'gun', we yelled out "Thank you Race Committee!.... And thank you, Wuestwind!"