The all-powerful team of Polka Dot Racing achieved its goal, we were not DFL. We were 8th out of 9 loosely translated to "not DFL". That's right, we rock.
Now, I know people scoff..."how can you be satisfied with such a result, you slow swine". I've heard that said but it's OK we have a plan. Two minutes. We're going to improve by two minutes at a time, closing the 8 minute delta with the leaders incrementally. Two minutes faster and we'd have been in 7th and in the hunt for 6th.
Where can we get two minutes. Wow, all over the place. I'd guess 30 seconds if I'd had a better idea of the start time (they had some mysterious rolling start that was 20 seconds after the published time) so we were confused enough that we luffed a bit longer than we should have. 60 seconds if we'd had more practice time in that configuration (Kathy at the helm, Laura on main, me on jib). 60 seconds if I'd had an actual Genoa, but this isn't about equipment it's about human fixes we can make. 15 seconds if I had the bottom scrubbed monthly instead of quarterly. 10 seconds if I'd had the outhaul set better. You get the point, we can make up this delta with a bit more practice as a crew.
What I like most about Polka Dot Racing is that we're casual and enjoy sailing. I'm not changing that. What we're experiencing is growing pains of taking one experienced sailor (but novice racer) and a bunch of novice sailors and trying to make a race crew out of this mix. We don't race a race boat, we're not racers, but we're going to have fun racing anyway.
By the end of this season, I anticipate we'll make up those 2 minutes, possibly 4 and start seeing some middle of the pack results.