We did what we could to optimize the boat, new sail, some new running rig, all extraneous gear taken off and the crew size carefully chosen to suit the wind conditions. That last part was tough as the weather liars seemed determined to keep their options open. We had our techy stuff up and running with a young respected navaguesser monitoring them. We had expertise out the whazoo but even better we had a crew that formed itself in a team very readilly. Molly got the starts and she was brilliant, Silent Maid took on the role of brave little rabbit as Molly pushed some large boats up to the committee forcing one to peel off and the other to foul. By large I mean 70'. Molly also gets credited with the term navaguesser. There was no one helmsman but a round robin of people seeing what they could get out of the boat. Most had deep experience with A cats and Maid has much in common with those boats. The wind seemd to hover around ten and better for most of the races, meaning full canvas. We did reef for one leg, which was succesful.
The hard thing to get used to is the handicapping thing. In one design racing the competion is very straight forward, this was more like a track event against the clock. We did find one boat to compete with though.
Fidelio is a sister to Finisterre, a well known Sparkman and Stephens racer of the 50's and 60's. When the wind was up Silent Maid could move on her but when it dropped Fidelio had the edge. Why this was I could not say as Fidelio represented 30 significant years of development over the Maid.
Now the parties and the prizes are behind us and it is back to work. Maid is at a yard where a haulout will happen. It is time to shine her up for the boat show and also time for a short break.
I was the lead boat builder at the Independence Seaport Museum where Silent Maid was launched in June of 2009. After the adventures and misadventures described in the Blog of the Catboat Silent Maid I returned to Philadelphia to resume work on the banks of the Delaware.