By Craig Perez
I want to give a loud shout out to Ryan and Berkeley for participating in Richmond Yacht Club’s Sail-a-Small-Boat-Day. Berkeley traveled up from Newport Beach and Ryan came in from Half Moon Bay. The event started with a sunny day, light winds and over twenty different small dinghies all ready to show off their boats and go sailing. The Aero was represented nicely as Ryan (7rig) sailed around the harbor and channel while I Invited three prominent Laser / Byte / Toro sailors to take a spin on my boat (9 rig); they were all impressed. In fact, as the breeze filled in (its normal 1pm) to 8-10 kts, the test drivers got a good feeling of what an Aero can do in flat water and light air. Their first impression upon launching the boat was “how light” it was and how fast it accelerated.
Two larger men (both at 190ish) as well as two women (one 160ish and one 110ish) went out in my boat (9). They all had big smiles and big eyes when the boat easily jumped up on a plane in these beautiful conditions. FYI, these sailors are all Fleet, Pacific Coast, and or National champions in Bytes, Lasers, and Toros; the very sailors we want to jump to our Aero Class. If you are wondering how the small woman (110lbs) did in my (9), she did great! Her skill level was top notch so with some board up, Cunningham down, and hiking hard she was off like a rabbit. When she stepped into Ryan’s boat(7), she did even better and would clearly be a threat on the water out of the box.
Again, thanks Ryan and Berkeley for making the effort as this type of event is how we show off our boats! Active fleets don’t happen by magic. It takes enthusiasm, promotion, and people showing up.
Next Sunday is the last of the Richmond Midwinter Races: it would be nice to see a good showing. Hopefully the weather will cooperate with nice weather. The last time the Midwinters were held, (Races 2,3, were canceled due to storms) the prediction for winds were very light and it turned out to be a perfect day for racing with winds 8-12kts. Remember, those who show, are those who go (sailing). Trying to second guess winds in the winter months is a fools game.