Thursday, 24 February 2011

Extreme 40: Artemis Racing Excel on Day 3 in Oman

Artemis Racing and Emirates Team New Zealand. Image copyright Sander van der Borch/Artemis Racing.

by Morgan Trubovich

Wow. What a day! This was our first ever day racing an Extreme 40 in "Stadium Format" racing. We were told to expect a lot of very short races in very close proximity to shore. They were right. The racing was really short, sailing on tiny little loops around a bunch of different marks that didn’t really seem to fit any pattern. It was awesome. Like freestyle sailing.

Our first day in this sort of racing couldn't have gone much better. Our results in the 5 fleet races were 2,1,2,1,1 (out of 11 teams) and then we followed it up by winning a single match race at the end of the day. Basically, the story of the day was that Terry was on fire. With such short races it was critical that you had a good start and a good first beat. We did that every time. Start after start we were right on the start line, at full speed, going in the right direction.

But really, our performance today had in fact started last night. Yesterday, we had had our first bad day in the Class. We came ashore feeling very disappointed and frustrated with the way we had sailed. It was clear that we were going to hang on to this frustration, unless we did something about it. So, Terry called a compulsory meeting at the rooftop bar of the hotel. We talked it all out over a beer and came to the realization that the worst thing that could come out of the day was that we didn't learn from all the lessons we had been taught that day. So we talked about all the processes and the little things we could have done better. But mostly it was just a really good example of how well we get along...that we could all get together and say what we thought without fearing the consequences. We went to bed knowing that the next day we would get another chance to do things the right way and learn from our mistakes.

That is what we did. We just had good race after good race and took ourselves from 5th place to 2nd place, just a few points behind the leader. What a difference a day makes! So, we will go into tomorrow focusing on the processes, not the results, as the results will come if we keep doing things the right way.

Our best day together on the Extreme 40. But, we also want to mention the people of Christchurch, New Zealand who are battling the disastrous effects of a terrible earthquake today. Our thoughts are with all of them as a lot of us have friends and family down there.

More stadium racing tomorrow and the next day. Wish us luck!

Artemis Racing
Extreme Sailing Series