by Cushla Hume-Merry
Report of the Open Womans worlds
• Found the light weather challenging with the wind often shifting throughout the race. What seemed to be the favoured side in one race didn’t pay in the next. The tide played a big part in the race and it was important to know what the tide was doing and its time of change, using it to your advantage up and down wind. The experienced coaches were constantly doing tide analysis on the start line.
• The starting was very competitive with the fleet generally packed on the favoured side to the tide more than the wind. I found this very good training for the upcoming Youth Worlds. My starting progressively got better towards the end of the regatta but the 1 minute rule on not being able to be over the start line in the last minute (similar to the Black flag rule) caused a lot of general recalls and most starts ended up under the black flag.
• In the light air flat water, my speed has improved but I still need to work on the light air and chop as was the conditions on the 1st day of the finals where I struggled for boat speed.
• I was happy with getting into the gold fleet as it was predominately a light shifty air regatta with an average of 6 knots while my preference is wind coming from Wellington.
• The second day and last day was breezy which enabled me to test my heavy wind techniques against the overseas competition and in one race I got a seventh.
How I am feeling going into My Youth Worlds:
Energized, happy and looking forward to another week of challenging competition and weather patterns which from the forecasts can only be known at the time.