SD to PV Race Report – Hula Girl – Nowhere Slow

My head hurts. This stuff is grueling.

It’s a drifter out here as we dig into day five of the PV Race. By our math, we did something in the neighborhood of 92 miles from 7am to 7am yesterday… by race committee math and distance down the course figuring, it was shy of that by a dozen or so. Either way you slice it, it was a slow day. And today is no different… worse, in fact, if the first 12 hours is any indication. We’ve been upwind and downwind on both port and starboard tack. Every puff brings a sail change, then hope (for persistence), then disappointment. Kids, it;s a primer for life! But we know that there is an end to this, and it’s all gonna be all right… the wind will blow again!

I think we are still sitting ok. Good shot at second, and in this stuff, no lead is safe, so we’ll keep chomping at the J/125 Timeshaver. Looks like they jibed/tacked/drifted/teleported (whatever the fluky conditions would permit) south with us to defend their substantial lead… Blue Blazes caught a bit in terms of straightline distance, but we have still been working south when the opportunity presents itself, so I think we sacrificed mileage for positioning and I’m ok with that. Not sure what happened to Ocelot… they have dropped back, while Miramar has actually scooted up… with all the time we all owe them, they will benefit with the light stuff in this time-on-time scoring (as will the J125)… when we are all stopped, they are both kicking our butts!

In the meantime: house (boat) cleaning, drying out, repacking sails, showers, and general reorganization. Lots of sea turtles. Sea lions. Some small dolphins, bored with us ’cause we are poking along so slowly. The little red crabs came back for a bit. And one friendly big yellowfin who followed our rudder all morning. Got right up next to it with the waterproof camera Were there wasabi aboard, that fish wouldn’t have stood a chance, but in the spirit of oneness with our environment (Grasshopper), we simply admired it and welcomed it’s company, and aquatic Albatross, we hope. Plus, would have been tough to filet with a rigging knife. And as Joel was saying today, all this stuff we would have missed had we come flying thru here at 10, 15, 20 knots, so there is a positive side to this light stuff, this slowing-down-and-smelling-the-roses thing….

But enough already. We want the breeze back. It would have been a looonnnggg day, but for the company aboard. Seriously having a great time with this crew. It hurts from laughing so much. That’s one of the fun things about doing so many events with new crews… getting to meet and get to know all kinds of sailors from all over. This team is mostly from San Diego, my home town, so it’s been particularly fun.

Almost 8pm now. A couple hours ago it shifted to the NW and started to fill ever so slightly… 4,5, occasional 6 now… but the really good news is that this, finally, is the prevailing direction and we hope it will stabilize now. We’re not supposed to see much build over the next couple days, but slow and steady is a far cry better than what we’ve been doing.

That’s all I got, for now… have a good watch, and see you in the a.m.

Wayne Zittel and the Hula Girl Team

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