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Old 27-07-2011, 21:15   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Heath, TX
Boat: 1978 Pearson 26 One Design
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Beer Can Racing and Texas Weather . . . Yikes !

Wednesday night beer can race tonight. Temperature 102 at race time..7pm. Wind out of south at 5-7. The wife said it was too hot so I went by myself. I was 15 minutes late for the start so I took off chasing the fleet in a southerly direction. Mainsail full and hanked on 150 genoa. After the fleet rounded the second mark they were headed toward me on their run so I tacked to their leeward so as not to get mixed up in the midst of them and spoil someone's air. The wind was getting better all of a sudden and I picked up some speed. I was approaching the lakes shoreline maybe a quarter mile out. There was a sizeable gap in the group which allowed me plenty of room to tack back through them and not mess anybody up. Just as I made my tack I saw the wind coming down the hill, blowing the hell out of the trees as it reached the water and headed my way. I was like...uh-oh. It hit me so hard I was completely out of control. I don't know how hard it was blowing. All I could think of was "boy you better do something fast". I let the mainsheet way out and dumped both genoa sheets. They were whipping around out over the water on the starboard side...barely getting wet. Genoa flailing like crazy. I loosened the halyard faster than I ever have, quickly eased out to the bow pulpit and jerked that damn genoa down, piled it into the pulpit and secured the clew to the deck cleat with the sheets. I got back to the cockpit and trimmed in the main a little but the wind was howling even more. I looked at the fleet and they were all scrambling trying to get their spinnakers down. After about 5 minutes the wind started dying pretty fast. Fifteen minutes after the whole thing started it was over. My heart rate and the wind was back to normal. When I got home my wife said a big storm hit a town about 20 miles to the east. I remembered seeing the cloud but it didn't look like much and it was not coming my direction. What did I do wrong...if anything?
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Old 27-07-2011, 21:31   #2
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Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: DFW Metroplex
Boat: 1982 Catalina 25 Yacht
Posts: 164
Re: Beer can racing and Texas weather...Yikes!

Bunch of big storms southeast of the metro mess....

The gust front that blew off of them as they died out was so strong it showed up on radar, the weatherman talked about it....and I felt it pass through up here in North Richland Hills!

It was a doozie....even if you had checked the weather and seen the storms spinning off to the southeast, and died out.....well, could not have predicted that gust front as one of the stronger storms brushed against our high and blew itself out.
1982 Catalina 25, #2897; SR/FK/Traditional; Eagle Mountain Lake, Texas.
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Beer, texas

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