First of all, choose your headsail based on the worst weather
you anticipate. This often means a No. 3 because it fits inside the foretriangle and is easy to tack quickly from the cockpit and doesn't (usually) need skirting at the lifelines
. Second, consider flying that No. 3 on a small tack pendant. This gives you better visibility forward and catches a bit more air aloft. You should be aware that flying a No. 3 on a pendant will worsen your pointing ability, but the reason is safety
and ease of use, not speed. If you want to race
fast, get a crew to work on the foredeck with the biggest sail you can safely carry.
Third, consider a jib
downhaul. This is a thin line running from the headboard to a block at the tack and then aft to the cockpit. It gives you lots of control at bringing down any foresail in an orderly fashion and helps to KEEP it there, particularly if you run shock cord to the toerails forward to create a "cradle" for the downed sail.
This is very helpful particularly when you want to get the No. 1 on deck without getting it into the water
, and in Lake Ontario
in the summer, you usually want the No.1 for the typically light, warm air we get. Once you've downhauled the foresail, tension that line and tension the sheets
. This is usually enough to keep the sail "tamed" without the need to go forward and bungee it down.
Hope this helps.