Thistle Midwinters East Report: Fortunes Swing With the Breeze

On the second day of racing, shifty conditions made for a level, if rotating, playing field.


Jim Tomkins

One-design parity was alive and well on Day 2 of 2007 Thistle Midwinters East. A thick fog postponed racing in the morning, followed by threatening storm clouds, but when they passed, the ensuing light and shifty conditions put Race 3 within anybody's grasp.On The Sled, we enjoyed the distinct pleasure of letting the race slip through our fingers. After making a good start, hitting the first shift, and benefiting from a few lucky oscillations at the top of the beat, we found ourselves in first place rounding the top mark. Our lead management skills proved to be lacking, however, as we sailed too low on the run and watched helplessly as the pack rolled us on both sides.Steve Lavender was skippering one of passing boats. An inland lake sailor from Worthington, Ohio, Lavender excelled in Tuesday's conditions, playing every shift to his advantage and sailing away with a bullet.Greg Fisher demonstrated impressive consistency in the fluky breeze, finessing his way to a second place finish. His 1-2-2 score puts him nine points ahead of Paul Abdullah in second. Local ace Robby Brown, sailing for the first time with crew Patrick Wilson, sits in third. Sometime Sonar sailor Eric Goethert, also sailing with new crew, is in fourth.We're in fifth, having managed to preserve a ninth place finish after squandering our early lead. With another weather system moving through on Wednesday, and 15- to 25-knot winds predicted for Thursday, this underweight crew is soaking up every ounce of fifth-place glory while it lasts.