Lincoln Sunfish Open Regatta—lake racing at its best

Posted August 14, 2017

Lincoln (Ne.) The Lincoln Sunfish Open held on August 12, 2017 was one of the best days for racing Sunfish you could ask for. Winds were steady 8-10 mph out of the southeast, with oscillating shifts coming down Branched Oak Lake regularly as pressure from large cumulus clouds brought continual changes in wind velocity. All competitors had to focus on upwind strategy and tactics. It was quite simply a perfect Sunfish racing day. 

Branched Oak Lake and the Lincoln Sailing Club boast an outstanding venue for dingy racing, and sailors soaked up the glorious expanse of open scenery. The club permits camping on site on a large bluff overlooking the racecourse set in a large bay for racing. From shore, spectators had a tremendous view of the racing. The camping facilities were excellent both at the club and at the state park surrounding the lake where sailors had access to running water, showers and RV hookup.

Winds are nearly always steady at Branched Oak Lake, and Saturday was no exception. The lake water temperature was 67 degrees. With abundant sunshine the day started with air temperatures in the low 60s and never rose higher than 78 degrees. Beautiful high pressure and large cumulus clouds made for outstanding racing weather. 

The Race Committee took full advantage of the short 4-minute sail from the club sand beach to the racecourse starting line. In these conditions the Race Committee was able to run 7 races on the day--varying between 2 Olympic courses and 5 Triangle courses. Sailors came from Nevada and Wisconsin, joining local Lincoln sailors for the day of competition and camaraderie.

Mark Kastel from Wisconsin won the regatta with six bullets after an opening race with an equipment failure. A group of sailors provided Kastel with great competition throughout the day. Jen Lee, a recent graduate of the University of Connecticut and a member of the Huskie sailing team, currently a University of Nebraska graduate student, won the first race and placed second overall in the regatta. Vicki Albert from Lincoln Sailing Club got faster with every race, finishing the regatta with three second-place finishes and pressured Kastel at every mark rounding.

Best of all several beginning racers completed every race they sailed and stayed with the fleet.

The Lincoln Sailing Club members generously hosted a delicious lunch and an after-races social party complete with locally brewed beer, and tortilla chips with a selection of fresh, homemade salsas from mild to hot. The club hopes to run another major Sunfish open next year--don't miss it!

Will Thomas PRO

Results:

Skipper

Race 1

Race 2

Race 3

Race 4

Race 5

Race 6

Race 7

Final Points

Kasel, Mark

5

0.72

0.75

0.75

0.75

0.75

0.75

9.5

Lee, Jen

0.75

2

2

3

4

2

4

18.75

Albert, Vicki

4

4

4

5

2

2

2

23

Benham, Dale

2

3

5

4

3

4

3

24

Thomas, Guy

3

DNS

3

2

5

5

5

31

Smith, Steve

DNF

DNS

6

6

6

6

6

46

Zabel, Marnie

6

5

7

8

7

DNS

DNS

49

Rico, Amber

7

6

8

7

8

DNS

DNS

52



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