2022 RYC Midwinter Wrap Up

This years Richmond Yacht Club Small Boat Midwinters was another great midwinter series hosted by RYC. The Mercurys sailed on the “outside” Southhampton Course along with the U20’s, Wylie Wabbits, Laser, I14’s, and an Open Class.

For the most part the weather was beautiful providing just enough wind to sail well, lots of sun to keep things warm, and flat water for a great series. The RYC race committee seems to manage this chaos really well and for the most part there was very little fleet to fleet interference.
This year saw several new members racing as well as some established sailors. Except for Dave West all of us are among the newer crop of owners since late in 2017 when Lyn Hines purchased a Mercury and started racing. I met Lyn at RYC soon after he bought his boat and he convinced me to sail with him in the Nationals in Monterey that year. Our last race in that series was pretty good and I bought a boat soon after. Kurt Lahr, Charlie Mckenzie, Richard Jepsen, Scott Jenson and Mark Adams sailing a loaner (563) fresh from the beach in Monterey rounded out the RYC group.
Day 1 & 2 Sound like carbon copies of each other. The wind was gentle and in the 4-8 Knot range from the North and slightly East; the water was flat and the sun was out. Really beautiful conditions and great competition and participation. At the end of the first two days Shawm and Dave were within a few points of each other. Apparently, the social climate at the club after racing was excellent as well! Good riddance to Covid!
Day 3 was another gorgeous day. Just enough wind in the 5-8 knot range from the Northwest with flat water, and there turned out to be some very interesting tide activity and wind shifts. While this was all very subtle there definitely were some gains and losses to be had as a result of Mother Nature. Four races were sailed by Sinawi, Jensen, Mckenzie, Adams, Lahr, Hines, West and Bacci. Lyn had a crew mixup and ended up recruiting a very nice lady to sail with him although she had never been racing before! They had a very successful day. David West experienced a breakdown and missed one race and did very well in the other 3 races. Shawm, Dave and Lyn finished at the top of leader board.
Day 4 was a gorgeous day that promised a little more wind. The wind was from the Southwest, more or less the normal direction by Southhampton, and the tide was flooding all day. With a little more wind there were small square waves that developed which occasionally got us wet, but just enough to add a little challenge to sailing. Unfortunately Lyn was absent and I think that all of us felt his loss on this day. It was poignant to miss and remember Lyn on this beautiful sailing day in The Bay.
Four races were sailed by Sinawi, Bacci, McKenzie, Adams, and Jensen. Mark Adams was sailing the loaner and we realized that none of us knew that 563 had
a drain hole! Oh no. From the beach to the bottom! Well, we figured it out in time and got her bailed and sailing.
The results and Prizes were given after the racing and the beautiful buffet put on by RYC on the dining room deck. First place went to Shawm who sailed a great and consistent series. Second place, despite missing one day, went to Dave West, and third place went to Lyn Hines.
I hope that more members will consider the RYC Mids for the next round. It is a great series and beautiful sailing weather most of the time. The courses are much wider and the legs are full size for the Mercurys. See you there!

Report by David Bacci

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