On the 29th we took a Shields 88 "field trip" and sailing our friend Aaron's Etchells for the memorial day regatta. It was really fun, although we didn't do great, we did get a good feel for the boat and improved, with a 5-5-2 scoreline.
Thoughts on the boats: the etchells feels similar to drive upwind, although the sails are a lot more developed so the boat has a super narrow groove upwind, where you're trying to seek out that angle where the inside tells are straight up, but not too high or the luff of the jib starts to go soft. Was kind of 70% on this, but got it pretty well in the last race. Downwind is a little more fun than the Shields in the light, as the boat accelerates better. Niki likes the Shields bow better. Both cool boats, if I lived somewhere where there was no Shields fleet an Etchells would probably fit our style of sailing.
The races were sailing in 4-10kts, light chop. We had this great plan to commit to the right side early, which meant in the first 2 reasons we kept finding reasons to go left! Got in some trouble figuring out the boathandling early, but still felt decent on speed, with one exception. Rick sailed 2 up, at probably around 290lbs crew weight, and was pretty much uncatchable downwind. We were a bit illegal on weight, being somewhere around around 730lbs, which did make us a bit pokey downwind. Still had fun in the last race leading a bit, and the 2nd felt good in that fleet our first time out.
Racing wednesday (I hope) followed by our first series race next sat (as last sat was cancelled due to fog/no wind)