Three Bridge Fiasco 2016 at Singlehanded Sailing SocietyJanuary 30
Jack won overall ! Clockwise.

With a little luck and some fortuitous calls en route, Jack takes the gun!

"This year's winner, Bill Erkelens agrees whole heartedly on the luck aspect. A 3 time winner in previous years with wife Melinda on a Mumm 30, A turboed Hobie 33 and a Moore 24, Bill and short notice pick up crew, Keith Stanke sailed this year on Bill and Melinda's Wylie Wabbit Jack. Bad luck for Melinda who was already hobbled with a foot injury, which was compounded when a nasty cold started coursing through her veins the day before the race. Keith has sailed with the Erkelens for decades and has done middle on various Wabbits with them in year past, and as luck would have it, Keith was available.

Start times for the 3BF can also play into your luck card, and this year Bill said " We hit the jackpot" Starting somewhere in the middle of the fleet, just behind a large contingent of Express 27's and Moore 24's, Bill and Keith saw enough pressure left in the dying northerly to get to Blackaller, staying in the stronger breeze and current and away from the masses which went to the beach and wallowed.

Catching "A lucky puff" Jack was able to round Blackaller and get to better breeze and ride the current up to Raccoon Strait where a gaggle of Moore 24's had stalled at the entrance. They were able to use the bad luck of others and navigate around them catching a couple additional puffs in the process, laying the eddies up to Hospital Cove before heading into the Richmond Channel.

Watching the boats ahead, mainly keel boats which were sailing close-hauled towards Red Rocks in a 5-6 knot Northerly, The Wabbit was forced to crack off a bit to maintain vmg, which as luck had it put Jack into the cone behind Red Rock and they were able to slingshot past a horde of boat riding the back eddie up to the western shore. The ebb was still in force at the Island at the time, and the breeze easing as many boats found themselves on a treadmill, attempting to round the rock. Another lucky break came in the form of a puff that gave Jack just enough pressure to slid up and over and into favorable current again.

Just after Jack began riding the Richmond Channel Current back south, the now transitioning breeze began to die, leaving many boats sputtering in its wake. Riding the remaining ebb for all it was worth, Jack slid slowly toward Point Blunt, noticing many of the boat ahead had sailed much lower to avoid the opposite ebb on the Berkeley Flats. Now higher than most other boats, Jack was in position to set the kite again as the new breeze from the south west filled.

"The timing was pretty spot on, as far the forecasts predicted" Bill said "And we were just lucky to get to where we could take advantage of the transition."
Bearing down around Treasure Island and Yerba Buena, Bill and Keith chose a tad closer route than some of the other boats then tacked up the City Front in 10-12 knots and we then able to lay the cone behind Alcatraz before tacking back to Gas House Cove for more current relief and the lay the X buoy with just one tack, crossing the line at 14:09:24, 7 minutes and 36 second ahead of the closest competitor, Stephen Bourdow and Nick Halmos on the Moore 24 Moooregasm."
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