Frostbiting 2017-2018 Season Wrap-up

In Frostbiting by Caitlyn Ridgely

Currently at Courageous Sailing there are signs everywhere that the season has changed.  Gone are the snow shovels and bags of salt (hopefully).  Gone are the ice dams in the bilges.  And our boathouse, which in the winter can feel like an arctic outpost, is now full every day of high schoolers and smelly sailing gear.  

But we certainly haven't forgotten about Frostbiting and I wanted to take a few minutes to wrap up from the end of the season, and also let you know of some opportunities and events we have coming up soon.

Week 17, our last day, was probably the most challenging day we had all season.  It certainly wasn't the windiest day we had, that was Week 16.  But Week 17 had such crazy, shifty winds, you'd swear we were sailing on the Mystic Lake.  The wind died right after the start of Race 1 and it took almost 45 minutes for most of the fleet to get around the shortened course.  When the wind did come back it did not stay in one place for very long.  Races 1-3 saw frequent 70-degree wind shifts and speeds anywhere from 0-15 knots.  

During Race 4 the wind shifted a full 180 degrees on the first downwind (upwind?) leg.  Usually when this happens there is at least a 20 minute delay as the course has to be completely reset.  However, Jesse Hamilton, Bill Thompson and Martin Weissberger were so good, we were sailing again in 5 minutes.  They moved more marks in Week 17 than they did in Weeks1-16 combined.  

Despite all of the wind shifts and course adjustments, and tugboats and J24's all around us, we managed to get in six races.  The racing was exciting to watch and back-and-forth all day long.  Five different boats managed to get a first place finish.  It was hard to stay consistent when the wind was anything but.  But Steve Uhl was incredibly consistent.  He came in 7th in Race 1, and then finished 3,3,3,3 and 3.  Steve was our newest member of the fleet this year, but he's certainly no rookie.  However his 22 points on the day weren't enough to catch Chip Terry and Kyle Jachney who finished with 18.  The top 5 finishers on the day were...

  • Terry/Jachney - 18 points
  • Uhl - 21 points
  • Marston/Brand - 27 points
  • Gallagher/Gordon - 33 points
  • Veenland-Lee/Goldman - 35 points.

Week 17 was also the end of Series 3.  Congrats to our prize winners for Series 3 who were...

  • Chip Terry and Kyle Jachney - 0.819
  • Steve Uhl and Rebecca Mount - 0.744
  • John Pratt and Bob Coyle - 0.597

And finally, we awarded prizes for our overall Season standings.  He wasn't able to be here for the last day, but Mark Lindsay had an incredible run this season.  He finished in first place on 5 of the last 8 days that he sailed, and there was no way that anyone was going to catch him on the last day.  A big congrats to our Overall Season Winners who are ....

  • Mark Lindsay / Jim Watson / Jaime Chicoine - 0.803
  • Matt Marston / Cheney Brand - 0.759
  • Angus Macaulay / Kyle Jachney / Chip Terry - 0.730

I also want to give the Ironman Award to John Pratt and Bob Coyle.  This season we raced a total of 80 races, and they were the ONLY team to sail all 80 races.  Well done!  Also funny enough, last year we also did 80 total races.  Next year we'll shoot for 81.

I wanted to make one last call for nominations for the Paul Elvstrom Sportsmanship Award.  If there is someone who you feel has consistently exhibited good sportsmanship, and who deserves to be recognized for it, please let me know. 

Now that the season is over, I'm 100% certain that you are all incredibly sad due to the fact that you are not at Courageous Sailing as much as you previously were.  However, there is a cure for that.  If you miss us terribly, or would like to give a hand, we would love your help.  Sunday, April 15th 10am-4pm is our Volunteer Day.  It's time to purge, clean and organize!  It's a great opportunity to help give back to Courageous and a good chance to meet other sailors and possible future frostbite crew.  There are a million things to do before the season starts, so regardless of ability or availability, we need your help.

We also have an Open House running on three different days, April 21, 28 and 29 from 12-3pm.  During the Open House we offer free sailboat rides and Nate's Famous BBQ to the public.  As you can imagine, this is usually very well attended, especially if the weather is nice.  We need skippers to take people out for 15-minute sails around the harbor and talk about their relationship with Courageous.  It's always a great time and did I mention Nate's Famous BBQ?

Courageous is always looking for more sailing instructors.  We need certified US Sailing instructors to teach classes almost every weekend.  If you're not a certified US Sailing instructor, that's okay.  We will be running a US Sailing Keelboat Instructor Certification course.  If you know of anyone who might be interested in this, please let us know.  This is a great opportunity for kids coming back from college for the summer, or anyone looking to do a little teaching on the side.

If any of these opportunities interest you, please let Caitlyn or myself know.  

This email is long enough already, so I'll keep it brief, but I wanted to say one last thanks to the fleet for your support this year.  The Frostbiting fleet is incredibly important to Courageous on many levels.  You are all such great ambassadors of the sport, and especially for Courageous itself.  The reason is because you love sailing.  You love it more than just about anyone in the world.  You love sailing so much that you are leaving the house on a Saturday morning when it is 20 degrees out and also somehow raining.  You love sailing so much that you don't mind chipping ice out of a bilge or going through 6 pairs of gloves.  You love sailing so much that you pass that love on to everyone that you can.  And that's what Courageous Sailing is too.  So thank you for your continued support.  It was a great season, I hope you all had fun and I look forward to seeing you all again soon.


Nate and the Courageous Frostbite Team