Blogs for two days’ together:
RACE DAY, and Team Andiamo is ready…….or as ready as we’re going to be.
Given the widely varying levels of blue water racing experience amongst the crew, our objectives are sensible - race well; ensure a safe passage; and have as much fun afloat as we’ve had ashore.
With have world class racers amongst us, complete with many grueling races including trans-Atlantics, Fastnets, Sydney-Hobarts, Newport/Bermudas, and Saunderstown Sunday regattas. We have world champions from various grueling race & transits, including Michael Broughton, Romain Mouchel and Clarke Murphy. We have the single best aft deck crew ever with Ben Chafee, and Avery, Cara & Morgan Murphy, and a foredeck crew found in the local watering holes, starring Bill Hitchens & Andrew Lis. In keeping the with family tradition, owner Byrne Murphy is also aboard!
We’re ready. We’ve practiced. Lets go!
It is 27 hours and 200 miles into the race and all has proceeded reasonably well aboard Andiamo. Sail changes have been smooth. Boat speed has been well maintained despite lighter-than-optimal winds. Spirits remain high. A sense of humor runs rampant.
Andiamo may just be the most cruiser-oriented boat in the fleet. As global racer & renown navigator MIcky Broughton quipped 30 minutes into the race, “Congratulations team. I feel fairly certain Andiamo is the first boat ever to be in 2nd place after the start while sporting a full bimini!”
Notwithstanding that stellar distinction, we held our own on the initial windward legs. Though we were in lower middle of our class after those initial legs, we made up time sailing off the wind with our board up, with the race’s YB Tracker projected to be in approximately the top third of the 41 boats in CSA fleet on corrected time. When after sunset the air tuned light, followed by no wind at all, then swirling squalls we found ourselves on the wrong side of a wind shift and fell back again. Perseverance (and good luck) paid off when a front came barreling through in the early morning hours with winds in the 30 – 35 knots range. Andiamo was in her element. She charged back up in the fleet, posting 14.5 knots at her fastest, and by the time the rain and clouds cleared she was in the top third of the pack again, surprising ourselves more than others.
Clearly the high point of the adventure is witnessing my two daughters Avery & Cara sail in their first blue experience, much less blue water race. They are soaking it all up – asking questions and volunteering for more. Joined by my brother Clarke, a very accomplished ocean racer & godfather to one of the daughters, the whole event is a memory maker.
Great weather. Great sailing; Great race.