Thursday, January 24, 2013

Wednesday at Sea: Regatta Time in Key West

     Yesterday was one of those fabulous days at sea down here in the tropics.   The winds were blowing around 20 or so and the sun kept coming in and out of the clouds making it warm enough to be comfortable without getting burned.   The crew of the America 2 did a wonderful job of keeping us close to the action all day long, making the action exciting to watch.

     We set sail about 10:00 am and headed out to the race course along with all of the boats in the competition.  This was a very colorful trip out watching the crews readying their boats as they worked their way out to the course area.

    Marta and I were enjoying a glass of Mount Gay XO with a couple of cubes on the way out, the perfect was to start the day on the water.  Mount Gay XO is one of the flagships rums, and has earned its stripes as a fine sipping rum.   By the way, a heart felt thank you to Karlene Palmer - Mcleod, the regional brand manager at Mount Gay for the invitation and the kind treatment as their guest aboard the America 2.

    The races were divided into to two divisions, The very large boats and the smaller boats.  The larger boats were on the westerly course and the smaller on the easterly course.   Both classes provided some very exciting action throughout the days races.   In the big boat classes, the 72 foot boats really put on a great dual as the came down wind with full spinnakers flying.   The dropping of the spinnakers to make the turn up wind is always an exciting time in the event and critical to winning the race.   The boats really put on a show today with the good winds.  They had all the power to go fast and make the action even more exciting.

     Over in the division 2 area, there are a lot more boats and the action is a lot closer.  There is a lot of moving around trying to keep the sails filled with clean air in order to keep the speed up.     This close in racing and pushing the limits sometimes ends up in a blow over that can really slow you down approaching the gates.  This makes for quite the traffic jam as well.

    Headed back to through the channel to the marina you could see the big 72 foot yachts making their final turn to down wind and their spinnakers filling with the wind as they accelerate away from the turn buoy.   This was a really wonderful day filled with good food, great racing and some really enjoyable Mount Gay XO Rum.   I don't know how it could be any better.  ;o)