SERTL'S theory was seriously tested in the second race, when a so-so start made it necessary for her to tack six times in the first minute to get a clear lane. It was a struggle to finish ninth in that race, and the combined scores for the day left her in third overall, while Sally BARKOW (Nashotah, Wis.), sailing Team Seven, moved to the top of the scoreboard.
BARKOW, who had finished third in the first race, took off like a bullet in the second. The span between her boat and the fleet at the finish was many times over what SERTL had accomplished. 'Our start was good in the first race, at the boat end, but the boats that got to the right of us made out. In the second race, we were halfway down the starting line and pulled the trigger at the right time. We had good speed off the line and better wind in that race.'
BARKOW, who is defending champion here with the same crew that sailed with her in 2003, said she is more relaxed this time around. 'That's because we have more confidence in our talent. That comes with sailing full time as a team since then. Phenomenal crew work is what it comes down to.' BARKOW and crew are aiming to be at the Olympic sailing event in Beijing in 2008 and just flew in from France where they dominated 11 top-ranked international teams at the St. Quay International Women's Match Race.
Experiencing the most consistent day was Jody SWANSON (Buffalo, N.Y.), who posted a 2-2 for second overall. 'We'll take two seconds any day,' said SWANSON. 'In both races there was someone who punched out for a good lead; then there was a group behind, and we were just ahead of that group both times.'
According to SERTL, 'everyone's going to love tomorrow.' The weather forecast is saying that it might be the windiest day of the regatta, with a chance of thunderstorms late in the day. 'We were here last week for the J/22 East Coast Championships and it was a lot like it was today.'