Saturday today and back at sailing. I arrived early, rigged my boat changed and got ready for racing. Today I tried my new winter gloves. They have leather palms for grip and the outside is 1.5mm neoprene. When dry they feel warm, but when they get wet, things are different. In the beginning they are cold but soon they warm up. They really work like a wetsuit.
First race, good start but soon enough I started falling behind. Medium wind, a bit gusty and not being able to hike. The downwind leg, started as a reach, then turned to a run and a few meters before the gybing mark it turned into a beat. I was trying to catch Brent but eventually I gave up. I finished 5th out of 6 but it is what I was expecting.
On the second race the wind was slightly stronger. I had a good start but as I was beating I couldn’t pull the kicker in as much as I wanted. I felt that I was weak or something. As soon as I tacked I saw what actually had happened. The top block of the kicker, where the key is, that attaches to the boom, had bent sideways and the line had fallen off the sheave. I let my main out, and moved to the front of the cockpit and with both hands tried to sort out the kicker. By the time I had done it, I was last. I continued the upwind leg and as soon as I rounded the beating mark, I let the kicker off and the line “fell” on the side again. I sorted it out very quickly but as soon as I started the downwind leg, it happened again and I went in. There is no point in continuing the race because it was getting too frustrating.
As soon as I de-rigged the boat I called the guys at the Welsh Harp Boat Centre to see if I had time to get there before closing. They were just closing, so I asked them if they could bring another block tomorrow morning. Rob, helpful as always, said he would sort it out. As I said before, nothing beats a good service.
While we were rigging, Brent was admiring and commenting on my new kicker. According to a Greek custom he put a jinx on it. Basically we say that if someone is jealous or envious of you, he gives you bad energy. This bad energy results in bad luck or even sickness. I am glad I am not superstitious.