2015 Thistle Midwinters West and Larry Klein Memorial Trophy
Posted by on February 03, 2015
Dieball Sailing Ambassador Mike Gillum recaps his success at Thistle MWW and Larry Klein Memorial Regattas.
This past Super Bowl Weekend’s 2015 TCA MWW & Larry Klein Memorial lived up to all of the usual expectations!
Sure MWW was lacking the usual big names like Brady & Wilson and at only twenty-three boats it wasn’t going to break any records but it sure beat the alternatives of sitting on the couch watching the “Game” and/or shoveling snow as we slathered on sunscreen trading rumors and gossip about our snowbound Thistle friends back east!
Thursday’s scheduled three races out in the ocean died with the morning onshore breeze with the fleet being towed back inside overcast Mission Bay where Past TCA President Kevin Arrow, Kevin Bradley & Cody McCoun won the first race in #3993, Dieball Sailing customers Dave Rumbaugh, Steve Fishman & Kiersten Vance in second in #3904 and long-time Dieball Sailing West Coast Representative Team Gillum (Mike, Mardi & Alison) #1010 sneaking in for third place.
The second race started with a pair of General Recalls in a decent breeze before the fleet was vacuum-packed in and around the weather mark leading to the cancellation of the rest of the day’s races.
The PRO wisely made the decision to run Friday’s races inside Mission Bay in on/off rain showers where we were able to finally get in three light-air connect the dots windward/leeward races finally starting at 1:30 pm as we all looked around for any hint of a breeze with Team Gillum scoring 1,2,2 for the day to move into the overall lead with Dave Rumbaugh following close behind with a 4,3,1.
The sun finally decided to make an appearance Saturday morning and while the forecast was again dismal the normal sea breeze decided it finally wanted to play allowing for four more races in fairly normal shifty 8-12 knot Mission Bay conditions. Team Gillum, Dave Rumbaugh & Eric Heim/Quantum San Diego #4009 found the conditions to their liking swapping the top three places most of the afternoon to eventually finish in that order overall.
Team Gillum and Dave Rumbaugh both used the proven D-Cut Mains, BA-2 Jibs & Cross Cut Spinnakers to excel both upwind and downwind all weekend.
Sunday’s Larry Klein Memorial ended-up being a six race fleet race series with a throw-out instead of the usual three race qualifier immediately followed by the single-elimination Match Races as Regatta Organizer’s weren’t able to find qualified Umpires.
Again all of the morning forecasts told us not to expect any breeze but a gorgeous sunny morning out of a San Diego Chamber of Commerce Brochure led to a filling sea breeze as ten of us launched on schedule allowing the two-manned Thistles to excel in the first two lighter races but then the sea breeze made itself felt as we experienced 12-18 knots the next three races making the three-manned Thistles smile instead!
Team Gillum’s consistent scores in the first five races allowed us to skip and throw-out the last race easily winning the 2015 Larry Klein Memorial so we could start packing for the 9+ hour drive home Sunday night/Monday morning.
Dieball Sailing customer Graham Vaughan, Doug Stumberger & Liesl Mordhorst in #3682 from Seattle had an mostly up day to tie for second overall but lost the tiebreaker to Mike Gillian and his family team in #3979 from Illinois who double-decked out with Kevin Arrow to settle for third overall.
Since all fourteen races were sailed on flat water in conditions ranging from drifter to fully hiking while depowering our rule of thumb included the pulling the Main Outhaul tightly to pull the foot shelf closed, hoisted the Main as high as it’ll go with the Tack Slug 2-3” above the Gooseneck, loosely hoisted the Jib Halyard allowing for crow’s feet between the Jib Snaps and the Barberhaulers slowly creeping outboard from 16” off centerline to approximately 19” off centerline in the bigger puffs to further flatten the entry of the Jib and open the slot between the leech of the Jib and Main.