Racing 5-20-2017

more photos                                                                                                                               by Cathy

Jim's first ever 1st in the Butterfly races. Woo hoo!
The weather didn't look so good for sailing and then it did. It's been that kind of May. It was cloudy and cool which was nice after all the humidity and there was a steady breeze from the northwest at about 7-12 mph.

I got to do race committee with Gary which is an excellent way to learn . . . about everything! He let me practice driving and then gave me a play by play account of the racing - who should be doing what, when. That made it so much more interesting.

Burton, 1st in the first two races.
With only 4 Butterflys it was easy to keep an eye on everyone and really see what was happening. Jim led in the first race and for several legs on and off during the day - plus I think Gary pointed out he got a really good start in that 2nd race. For the last race which Jim won, he led around the jibe mark but at some point going downwind, Burton caught up and passed him. On that last leg, Jim played the east side and went from looking like Burton and Sandy might beat him - to crossing the finish line with a wide lead. Way to go!

Start of the last race on a cloudy, cool day in May.
Everyone looked like they were enjoying the mild temps and steady wind. No capsizes and smooth sailing.

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2017 Wrangle Registration

                                        ***** NOTICE OF RACE *****

                            The Wrangle Regatta (A Single-Handed Event)
       Butterfly Fleet 20, White Rock Boat Club, White Rock Lake, Dallas, Texas

                                                June 10-11, 2017

Click here for online registration: Registration

The NOR is posted on the CSC website and copied in below: Notice of Race

Rules: The regatta will be governed by the rules as defined in The Racing Rules of Sailing.

Eligibility: The regatta is open to all boats of the Butterfly classes. Skippers who are under 17 years of age as of 12/31/2016 will be considered juniors.

Registration: Registration is available online and prior to the races on Saturday morning. Competitors must register by May 29 to insure pre-order of regatta t-shirt. The entry fee of $40 may be paid at checkin. Fee includes continental breakfasts, Saturday lunch and regatta t-shirt.

Seven (7) races will be attempted. One (1) race will constitute a regatta.

Saturday – June 10
   8:30am – 9:30am Registration and continental breakfast at WRBC
   9:30am Competitors meeting
   10:15am Warning signal for first start
   Lunch ashore
   Afternoon races to follow lunch
   After race refreshments

Sunday - June 11
   9:00am Continental breakfast at WRBC
   10:00am Warning signal for first start of the day
   No race to start after 1200 (Noon)
   Award presentation to follow the last race as soon as possible at WRBC

Sailing Instructions: The sailing instructions will be available at registration.

Courses: Courses will be as provided in the Sailing Instructions.

Scoring: Seven races are planned. One race will constitute a regatta. The low point scoring system, Appendix A of the RRS, will be used except that no score will be excluded.

Prizes: Trophies will be awarded to at least the five top finishers in each class.


Information: For further information contact Paul Miller at White Rock Boat Club - 340 E. Lawther Drive, Dallas, TX

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Racing 5-6-2017

                                                                                                                                                    by Cathy

Heading downwind on a beautiful day. That is Tom giving Shannon a sailing lesson on the far right. Photo by Sam.
Springtime in Texas has brought us too much wind to sail so when we finally had a nice 5-10 mph SE wind, ten of us showed up to race. It was a beautiful day. Sam and Bruce were on race committee and due to shifting wind they reset the course a few times and we ran three races back to back as the wind began to dwindle. I have not seen the scores and was pretty far back - but rumor has it that Larry was on fire and was sailing quite well, with many commenting that they were going to start following him. Amber and Tom were out and then Tom went in and took Shannon out for a sailing lesson.

Butterfly Wrangle coming up June 10-12

Amber, waiting for the races to start. 

Marshall, between races.

 Photos by Sam:

Look who Sam ran into after the Butterfly races. Come back Brad. We miss you! 
And from Sunday WRBC sailing class:
Trace on Sam's Butterfly. Hope he'll join us some Saturday.  

Bruce (hidden) mentoring some potential Butterfly sailors on Sunday.

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Stephen Nelson (5-26-1994 - 4-5-2017)

by Pam
Another young sailor gone too soon.  I first met Stephen when he and his brother came over one Saturday many years ago to sail double-handed against the Butterfly fleet.  They were quite young, had received coaching from Jim Young and were quite talented.  An eye opening experience for us all.  

Later, when Stephen was just 15 years old, he sailed in the 2009 Wrangle Regatta where we had 46 boats in three fleets on the course.  He showed up with that beautiful Butterfly with the Texas flag on the bow and he easily won in the Butterfly fleet against all the adults.  We saw him again at the 2009 and 2012 Single Handed Nationals.  He was a good kid with a promising future in sailing.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family.

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Racing 4-1-2017

                                                                                                                                                    by Cathy

Look at all the Optis, the next generation of sailors. 
The wind was from the south-east and in the 10 to 20 mph range. Nine Butterfly sailors dwindled to five in the last race for a variety of reasons. For me, it was just too much wind! The women made a good showing again, with Pam beating Nancy in the first 2 races. And both of them beating me and Laurie being the only one of us to make it through all 3 races. Go Laurie!

Meanwhile, before racing started we had a capsize. An empty bleach bottle at the top of the mast will help make it easier to self-rescue but even then it is not always possible. In this case, the bottle was missing so not much time to get the boat up and the committee boat had to help out.  But it went really well, they got the boat up and running very quickly and before you know it, we were set to start the first race again. Way to go - Jim and Larry!

Note: once the mast and sail are under the water, the sailor will likely not be able to get the boat up by pulling or even standing on the dagger board. However, holding onto the dagger board can keep the mast from digging into the mud which does make the rescue go much easier.

Below I describe what I saw but feel free to comment if something seems incorrect or if you have something to add. Let's make the capsize/recovery process as easy and safe as possible and share any tips that we have.

The start sequence stops since a boat has capsized. Since the mast and sail are under water - the committee boat will need to help.  

Committee boat gets the ladder ready, but the sailor decides to stay in the water.

Larry positions the boat while Jim grabs the fore-stay. 
Jim lifts the mast out of the water as Larry drives the motor boat alongside the Butterfly starting to point it into the wind.  
Larry drives the boat around and Jim stabilizes the boat so the sailor can get in.

Sailor gets in while RC continues to stabilize the boat until the sailor is ready to go again.
Otherwise, in racing Doug, Paul, and Gary all got one of the top 3 places in the various races with Burton getting some 4ths. It was a great day on the lake but the wind just kept picking up and after the Butterflys came in, the Optis stayed out and those kids are tough! Then a "fun race" began with some of the WRBC sailors. With that much wind hopefully the "fun race" sailors made it to the dam and back with no mishaps. It's springtime in Texas with great sailing in between the storms!

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Racing 3-25-2017

                                                                                                                                                    by Cathy
My sail is wet, but I am mostly dry - trusty bottle at the top of the mast saves the day! Photo by Laurie.
The last Saturday in March brought us good sailing weather with mild temps in the 60's and winds in the 10-20 mph range from the west and northwest. That meant shifty winds and gusty too. Between 9 and 12 Butterfly sailors came out for the 3 races, with the women being well represented between Pam, Nancy, and me, plus Laurie was on race committee with Burton.

The courses were Olympic and something about that windward mark made for some really big shifts the closer we got to it. One shift caused me to capsize in the first race, then I nearly fell out of the boat in the second race. It was that kind of day! Not only were there some unexpected "auto tacks" but when heading to the windward mark in the third race, there were some unexpected "auto jibes".

Marshall led the first race almost from the beginning and finished in 1st. His first 1st in the Butterfly! Doug took 1st in the second race, then Paul was 1st in the third race.

Thanks to Laurie and Burton for the great courses and to Laurie for all the pictures.
Yea for the women. Pam is back! 

Yea for the women. Nancy raced all 3 races w/o capsizing.
Yea for the women. I got lucky and kept the lead for a bit in the last race.  

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End of an Era - Racing 3-18-17

by Pam
Saturday marked the end of an era at White Rock Lake.  Bruce and Frank have officially retired from Butterfly sailing.  Although Frank sold his boat some time back to focus his sailing energy on the Flying Scot, when Bruce recently called it quits, it sort of became the official retirement from Butterfly sailing for both of them.  

We had a small gathering after sailing to honor them but it was sadly inadequate simply because they have done so much.  Bruce and Frank, together with Tom, Gary, Sandy and Burton, are "my guys." I credit Frank with getting me on a Butterfly and Bruce, Tom and Gary with keeping sailing one.  Whatever I needed, they were there.  For me, they are, and will always be, the face of Butterfly sailing and sooo much more.  Frank put me on my first Butterfly and shoved me away from the docks to 'fly' even though I had expected him to sail double-handed with me.  He always made it a point to offer encouragement or instruction when I was near him on the race course.  Bruce has repaired my boat, lent me his, and on the rare occasion when I found myself in front of him on the course, reminded me which way to go and pushed me to get that thing moving and get out of his way.  The two of them were there to help me launch my newly restored 40+ year old Butterfly and they watched as I hit everything in sight trying to get out of the harbor.  I'm sure we'll still see them around but they will be greatly missed on the water.  Thank you both for everything that you have done for me.  You have had a bigger impact than you may realize.

Oddly enough, on this day that Bruce and Frank leave Butterfly sailing, some old familiar faces came out and said they intend to start sailing again (me included).  We even had some new faces that are interested.  Time marches on and it's great but it also sort of sucks.  

Three races today and the weather went from a little overcast to plenty of sun.  We went from a very gentle breeze to nothing with boats looking like they were frozen in place.  Here is a reflection of Cathy in the water.  Kind of cool!

We had 13 boats and John, Sandy and Gary each won a race.  Cathy had a 2 2 3 making her the winner of the day.  Gary had some lousy starts and some impressive comebacks. Here are just a few pictures of the folks sailing.  It's been ages since I posted on the Butterfly site so I'll have to figure out where to upload more pics later.

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Racing 3/4/2017

more photos                                                                                                                                by Cathy

Start of the 1st race. Photos by Kurt.
We've been pretty lucky for February. Paraphrasing Jim's comments from the last two weeks:  Two weeks ago we had very pleasant weather but the wind died during the first race, it was shortened, and there were no more races for the day. Last Saturday's weather was delightful.  Winds were variable in intensity and direction.  But, winds were generally light or moderate.  We had zero capsizes.

For today the prediction was about right:   Winds about 10 to 15 mph from the SSE.  Mostly cloudy skies and temperatures in the upper 40's.

It might have been warmer than that but sure didn't seem it. Paul even commented it was the coldest he'd been on the lake this year. In spite of that we had a great time but during a capsize and rescue in between the 1st and 2nd race, Jim and Gary went in.  That left only 4 of us and the wind had picked up quite a bit by then. Burton's boom vang arm broke during the 2nd race, leaving only 3 of us. It was that kind of a windy day and no way to sail out there without a boom vang. No one wanted to stay for a 3rd race so we all went in and warmed up! 

Joyce also came out for a while to get in a little practice. Warmer weather is coming soon so hope to see her and more Butterflyers out there next time!

Thank you to Cameron and Kurt on race committee and Kurt for taking the photos!

Jim after rounding the jibe mark. 
Sandy, impressively finishing the 2nd race, though a little wet! 

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