Sometimes the fastest route is not a straight line

For anyone relying on the weather to reach their end objective knows that nature always has the whip hand. This was evidenced yesterday during the Wakatipu Yacht Club race to Walter Peak. Although we had a glorious day with a light southerly there is never a straight forward course when you hit the water. Certainly life is made easier when you can see the breeze line and how the opposition is faring across the race track but sometimes the decision is made to go right when the fleet has decided to go left. Observation and experience, communication and graft do help with those decisions and at times you do need to split from the pack to reach the finish line first.

Course setting and routing are at times counter-intuitive. For those who are following the Volvo Ocean Race can observe this first hand. The grand circle routing means that the fleet spends a lot of it’s time sailing away from the destination to get into the better sailing conditions – further means faster in this case.  Deciding to take a longer route rather than pulling the trigger to sail straight to the finish can take a strong nerve and many a navigator has lost sleep over the ‘what if’ scenarios.

Regardless of the outcome, there is nothing quite like messing about in boats. Should nature turn too fickle there is always the option to drop the ‘iron spinnaker’ and motor home before the beer and food runs out.

For those who are results oriented-  yes, the good ship Chaos took line honours on both legs of the race, outward and homeward.

Lunch was a delicious chorizo and cheese pita bread with wholegrain mustard and home grown rocket washed down with an ice-cold Heineken. Happy 50th Stewie.homeward walter peak 1711

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