Lightning Pymatuning Spring Classic
Posted by on May 19, 2015
Recap by Skip Dieball
Twenty-two boats showed for this year's Lightning Spring Classic at Pymatuning Yacht Club. This event is a midwest tradition as a season opener and as it attracts top talent. With a number of conflicts this year (CAN Pan-Am Trials, Graduations, Proms), the attendance was about half of what they've expected over the years. The talent, however, was not diminished.
The forecast was for light winds on both Saturday and Sunday, so every attempt was made to get a race in to try and beat Mother Nature. Two races were completed on Saturday, while Sunday's racing was skunked with no wind.
Winning both races was the team of Matt Fisher, Skip Dieball and Mallory Dieball. They sailed 15470 with M5 Mainsail, 5A+ jib and MAX-O/R spinnaker.
The first race saw some big wind shifts that favored the boats that sailed to the edges. Timing on the return was critical, but those that picked the right shift to cross back were greatly rewarded. Our team played the middle and bounced between 3rd and 5th most of the race. A last leeward mark split had Team Fisher/Dieball making the most of lefty pressure to squeak a win in front of Ryan Ruhlman and Rob Ruhlman.
The second race was a wire to wire win for Team Fisher/Dieball. A lot of position changes behind. Geo Sipel's team pulled a strong 2nd. Rob Ruhlman's team 3rd.
A 3rd race start was attempted after a lunch break. The wind died with inbound storms. The fleet was towed back to the harbor for a great party.
Sunday there wasn't a ripple on the lake. After a few hours of waiting, everyone hit the road.
It was a great event, as we've all been accustomed. Pymatuning is one of the most hospitable fleets.
On a personal note, I think it is pretty cool to be able to team up with a World Champ and my 9 year-old daughter for a fun, competitive weekend event!