Early Bird Regatta
Cedar Point Yacht Club – Fleet 126
Westport, Connecticut
May 20–21, 2017
Pos SailNo  HelmName  CrewName  R1  R2  R3  R4  R5  Total  Nett 
1 15507 Ched Proctor  Charlie Proctor, Meredith Killion  1 2 1 1 1 6 6
2 15215 David Peck  Nina Peck, Tim Milheiser  2 1 2 2 2 9 9
3 14719 Bill Bogardus  Grant Bogardus, Barbara Gold  4 3 4 3 3 17 17
4 15595 Josh Goldman  Paul Coudert, Eva Burpee  3 4 3 6 6 22 22
5 14706 Grant Ehrlich  John Erhard, Eitan Ehrlich  5 8.0 ZFP  5 4 4 26 26
6 15016 James Gardner  George Wiederman, Tye Whitman  7 7 6 5 7 32 32
7 15449 Eric Heller  Colin McGlynn, Drew Lambert  8 8 7 7 9 39 39
8 14631 Taylor Walker  Mike Chappel , Julie Chappel  9 9 8 10 5 41 .0  41 .0 
9 9811 Rob Dresses  Willie Dresses, Amanda Doolin  8.0 ZFP  7.0 ZFP  9 9 8 41 .0  41 .0 
19 14807 Rod Ratcliff  Laurie Delbene, Christine Lambert  11 .0 DNS  11 .0 DNS  10 8 10 50 50

                                                                                                  Champions: Ched Proctor, Charlie Proctor, Meredith Killion 

Runner-ups2nd Runner-ups
                                          Runner-ups: David Peck, Nina Peck, Tim Milheiser                                               2nd runner-ups: Bill Bogardus, Grant Bogardus, Barbara Gold 
                                                                                                                                                                               Son Grant sailed in his first Lightning regatta

On the weekend of May 20-21 Cedar Point Yacht Club held our annual kick off to the sailing season, the Early Bird which is held specifically for the Lightning Fleet. This year's event marked the return to a two day regatta after several years of running it as a one day event. Visiting boats from the Niantic fleet included Jim Gardner, Grant Ehrlich and David Peck while Rob Dresser came down from Hingham Massachusetts.  With our six local fleet members we had 10 boats on the line including new fleet member.Taylor Walker with, new to him, 14631 as his platform for his first time sailing a Lightning.

The weekend featured light South Easterly breezes and, although light, the direction was fairly steady. Good starts, good speed and lane management proved to be the key to getting good results.Three races were completed on Saturday before the breeze died. One of the races was abandoned after finishing in an unusual decision by the committee.Talk about redress request, after coming ashore, was quashed by some tasty h'orderves and the tapping of the beer keg. The starting lines proved challenging even with the small fleet as the leeward end tended to be favored and the line was short, even for the ten boats to all fit at once in the light air. In the second race, a general recall was signaled and the committee used the I over Z for the rest of the day. This served to keep most, but not all, of the fleet behind the line. We went back to restart after one x flag signal, but later found out we didn't need to. The second race was a  4 leg  windward leeward course. We had a close battle for first with Dave Peck's team all the way around the course. The lead changed between us several times, as the small shifts went first one way then the other. Eventually we were able to get the upper hand at the end of the second beat. In race three of the day, Dave Peck got off the crowded line first and held a comfortable lead all the way around. We battled with Bill Bogardus and just nipped him in the last 100 meters to finish the race second. The wind dropped out prompting an early cessation of on the water activities sending us ashore after three quick races.Saturday night's Italian dinner was enjoyed on the upper deck of CPYC as the sun came out and warmed us all up.

Sunday's start was postponed an hour as the Light Easterly forecast indicated it would be unlikely we could get a race off before 11:00 but we did manage to get in three more races. For the first race we observed that the starting line was again biased to favor the pin and that it was short. We started on port tack after ducking the whole fleet that was crowding into the pin. Dave Peck had a nice start near the pin and tacked to port. This left the two of us projected on the fleet with Dave 5 boat lengths to weather of us. We had a long drag race on port tack with the wind having shifted to the left about 10 degrees .We were able to sail out ahead and up in front of Dave by the time we reached the starboard tack layline. We lead to the finish and Dave was second.
In Sunday's second race we did win the pin and Dave was buried near the middle of the line. We all tacked to port and we were off to a lead and with very little in the way of shifts to play, had a comfortable sail around the course for 4 legs. The wind actually increased enough so we were starting to hike for a bit.

In the last race Dave won the pin and led half of the fleet out to the left while we were further up the line and tacked immediately to port. With a need to get a few boats between in order to gain points on us, Dave elected not to cover. We held port for while and eventually had a 10 degree knock. When we tacked to starboard, we seemed to be in pretty good shape relative to the part of the fleet that held starboard from the start. We sailed a while, feeling like we had more pressure, but less of a lift than the boats to the left. When the group from the left tacked to port the wind headed us about ten degrees and we tacked to port tack. They were looking good on the left of us with the left shift. But three boats out to the right were looking lifted on starboard tack. After a minute or so on port tack we got into this right shift. This let us tack to starboard and be up 15 degrees. Since the boats on the left were already near the port tack layline, they didn't have a lot of option to go back. We were able to get over them quite comfortably and tack back to port tack with a nice lead on that whole left group. Taylor Walker, came in from the right, with great breeze and angle, but overstood the weather mark which let us get in front of him. We rounded with a few length's lead. Taylor and Eric Heller came next with Dave close behind. We had a fairly easy time holding our lead to the finish, even though the wind had gone light, making the downwind angles quite wide. This left us a nice vantage point to watch the 4 way battle for second place. The three behind us held starboard jibe all the way to the layline. When Taylor and Eric jibed, Dave was able to jibe on top of them and gain the advantage to finish second in the race. Bill gained as he stayed just clear of the fray. Bill jibed short of the layline and had nice clear air. This enabled him to slip into 3rd ,pulled along by Grant's excellent spinnaker trimming

!At the finish, the committee indicated they intended to run one more race. But the wind became quite light and and we all sailed and towed home. The weekend wrapped with our team on 15507 hanging on to best the Peck team on 15215. The final podium spot was nabbed by Bill Bogardus and and team on 14719 in Grant Bogardus’ first invitational Lightning regatta as crew. Congratulations Grant The Early Bird provided the opportunity to get out the winter cobwebs with some pleasant sailing, good company, great food, ample beverages and the always exceptional CPYC hospitality. Next year, if you are free on the weekend before Memorial Day, come join us.

-Ched Proctor