Although Tuesday was a lay day the boat park was alive with activities; teams finishing hasty repairs, others busy with minor tweaking, and discussion about Monday's decision regarding the tagging of the gate boat at the start by a couple of boats.
With the abandonment of Monday's race due to extremely light easterly winds it leaves the series two races short, thus reducing the given two throw outs to one. During the crunch at the one true start attempt two contenders for the championship were forced into the "rabbit".
International 505 class rules as clarified at the skippers meeting say that the "mounting" of the rabbit or the gate boat at anytime during the start is an instant disqualification. Redress can be requested but the Jury must be shown conclusively that the incident was truly beyond the sailor's control. In light winds it is the general rule that you go to left here at Santa Cruz. A third or more of the fleet thus bunched up near the committee boat for an early gate and with the reduced manoeuvrability boats were over early or unable to dodge the boat as the start began. The end result is two boats will not be allowed to start the first of Wednesday's two races.
With the idea of bringing the Championships to the 505-world audience the committee has provided real-time, live streaming video online. This off-the-shelf technology is being provided by Stagecoach Wireless's Beat Neaf and Jack Macdonald and is available during racing slated to start daily at 12:45 pm PST. Please visit the 2004 505 Worlds website at www.505worlds2004.com to see the action live this coming Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
While watching the racing look for the youth infusion in to the 505 class. The youngest this year is 15 with more than one team having skipper and crew younger than the legal drinking age in most states. Find the boat named "The Carter Administration" and boat 7095. These teams are being encouraged and guided by veterans in the park. 6230 is the oldest boat in the fleet at this world championship. The European Union united under sail number 8802 with Philippe BOITE (France) and Rainer GOERGE (Germany). Also from Germany is the all-women team of Melanie OESTERGAARD, skipper and Angela STENGER, crew in 8751, a green hull named "Le Vengeur Emeraude" (Green Avenger). There are women skippering in 7094 (Jennifer LAWSON, USA), 8081 (Carisa HARRIS, USA), 8696 (Debbie ASHBY, Canada), 8796 (Carol BUCHAN, USA), 8821 (Katherine LONG, USA). The fleet contains Olympic Medallists, America's Cup veterans as well as many national and world champions from other classes.
If you happened to have been watching on Monday you might have seen hull 8554 take off from the top of a wave to land on 8722 in the trough during a jibe. A German team ended that day with an interesting dog-leg to the right in their mast. At least one capsize is contributed to pintle or gudgeon failure and multiple crews went swimming in the blast at the weather mark or in the holes mid-course. Who knows what the rest of the week will bring forward.
The LightSurf 2004 International 505 World Championship web site is at: http://www.505worlds2004.org/. Complete daily results, photos and reports will be available on this web site.