Last night we pulled back into Driscoll Boat works in San Diego after a successful week of sailing. The aim the week was to look at our new A4 sail, do a full system check, and look at sail crossovers and boat prep. Lots of discussion was had about just about everything you could imagine and it was good to have all of the race crew together for the first time.
Unfortunately the wind was fairly light for most of the week but every day it filled in just enough in the afternoon to achieve our goals. The A4 looks like a great sail and I think it will get a lot of use on the way to Hawaii in a couple of months. All communications were tested and functioned perfectly. Our C Zone control unit has been giving some bizarre alarms recently and I now think I have figured out the glitches and it is working much better now. The configuration between the C Zone and the Zeus is the problem but I know how to fix it now and feel like we have learnt something important.
On Wednesday we sailed from San Pedro to Catalina Island and picked up a mooring for the night at a town called Avalon. We got a taxi ashore for dinner and it seemed like a very nice place that I would like to go back to one day. Anyway we had a mission to get back to San Diego so at 0600 we dropped the mooring and headed on our way. The wind gradually filled in as the day went on and by the time we reached point Loma we had a solid 20knots of wind and Dorade was screaming along nicely. I think the top speed was just about 11 knots under the S2, main, mizzen and mizzen spinnaker. It was getting a little fruity towards the end pushing her hard on a beam reach we had to bear off in some of the gusts and I was glad when we got the sail down. It was a good test to push her hard and build confidence in ourselves and the boat. Big smiles on everybody’s faces!
Goose neck in action
The crew departed this morning and now I am getting ready for a period of painting and varnish which is well needed after a busy year of sailing. Sailing definitely gets in the way of my jobs list but I know which I would rather be doing. My varnish team arrives in a couple of hours and then I have Max the apprentice starting next week for the summer which is going to be a big help getting ready for the Trans Pac.
There are still lots more preparations I want to get done so I want to get this Varnish work done quickly so I can focus on making the boat go fast and being prepared for every eventuality.