David Hein and Arielle Darrow team up for the first time before the ISAF World Cup in Miami, FL. They were able to connect through mutual F18 sailors before the event started. Arielle just came from a first place finish in Islamorada for the F18 Midwinters. After a nice flight, they set on their adventure to go pick up the Nacra 17 and tow it over to Regatta Park. We then hit the water for our first day of practice. This was Arielle’s first time in the Nacra 17, but she had prior experience with the curved daggerboards from racing the Nacra 20 Carbon based out of Pensacola, FL. The first test ride went well, we had some issues with the port daggerboard not going all the way down but we survived. We finished off our day hitting up a great restaurant called Mashed Potatoes.
Nothing like waking up and being in a gale warning and small craft advisory. We looked at our NOAA buoy app and it said it was only blowing 25 knots out there. We still rigged the Nacra 17 and figured they raced the sailors in winds like this before, so we should go out and practice in this. We get off the dock in style while everyone is watching from shore. We get around an island that apparently was protecting the harbor and the NOAA buoy from what the wind really was (a nice 40 knot breeze) and all hell breaks lose. We are heading dead down wind and still submarining the front hulls. After our third submarine, it turned into a pitch pole and over we went. We quickly got to the boat and realized we were very quickly drifting into a mooring field. We cool and calmly used our body weight to dip, dodge and duck all moored boats. Luckily Arielle carries her cell phone on the water and called a friend on shore to come give assistance. We righted the boat and waiting for a safety boat to tow us back in. We were towed in and everyone thought we were very hard-core for trying to go sailing in that weather. After the adrenaline rush was down, Arielle realized she sprained her ankle. So David and Arielle headed over to Jaguar Therapeutics for some PT time. Once that was over, we treated ourselves to Robert’s Key Lime milkshakes (literally the best thing since sliced bread).
Last practice day before the start of ISAF World Cup Miami and we did some more work on the port daggerboard to get it working properly. We met up with our coach, Robbie Daniels, and our Canadian friends/training partners for the week, Maxime Loiselle and Justine Antaya. Had an okay day out on the water before our spinnaker decided to get so tangled that we had to cut the halyard and capsize to fix the remaining halyard. Nothing like a hard day of making sure everything is working right so we can perform 100% during the regatta.
After 3 hard days of practice, we know that the boat and team is ready to go for the 2016 ISAF World Cup Miami.