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Thought for the day - Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose

Thee are days when you look at a sailing venue and the wind patterns on the water enter your mind and you know exactly how to play then. Today at Emsworth was one of those days.

It was a gloriously sunny day with a gentle SSW breeze of around 3-8 knots. Because there was some training going on on one half of the Slipper Pond, we were pinned back onto a short course at the southern end. My compliments to the race officer Chris who set up a challenging short course under difficult circumstances.

This was a day when I could get a mediocre start and pick a line through the shifts to get to the front of the fleet. 12 starts and all bar two races, great results. Today I avoided trouble, no turns, no collisions. The more I practice the better my results. The blue home build was on fire.

It proves that in fluky conditions it is not boat speed that counts, but sailing fast and free to keep the boat moving and picking the right lines. The secret - watch the patterns on the water to help predict which way the wind is likely to shift and position the boat accordingly, stay out of trouble and sail fast and free.

There was one dilemma. The starts were generally port end biased but the dilemma was if you started at the port end and were forced to carry on too long on starboard, you would overstand the windward mark. Starting in the middle of the line and tacking onto port as soon as possible usually gave a good line to the windward mark and has the benefit of being surrounded by only one or two boats at the start.

A fabulous day. Maybe time for a change of colour.

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