Yesterday North Sea hosted the FINALS for the S4L TWELVE METER REGATTA, sponsored by SAIL4LIFE.
Four outstanding teams had each earned the right to compete by winning their Qualification Rounds on June 20. The Final Foursome included:
FLORIDA SAILS, and
Yesterday they raced a carefully thought out, no-frills Olympic course designed by Ldewell Hawker; Hawk also served as uber Race Director for the Finals event.
Silber Sands and Joro Aya were the principal judges, ably assisted by Iteke and Rolf80 Titanium, and Taku Raymaker and Jane Fossett served as Appeal Judges.
The race conditions were overall excellent, thanks largely to Elbag Gable’s careful attention to sim performance issues for the event. Sadly however, FLORIDA SAILS had to withdraw from the competion when skipper James Munson developed computer problems that resulted in repeated crashes. This was particularly unfortunate, since FLORIDA SAILS was leading the pack in Race #1 just before James crashed out. 😦
The remaining three teams were remarkably well matched. In the initial heats, WYC-1, WYC-2, and PENGZILLA had each earned a first place win. At that point the whole regatta was still a toss-up, anyone could win! It all came down to Race #4.
I’ll have a great deal more to say about the FINALS, but let me now comment that heat #4 turned out to be the most exciting, best-sailed race I’ve ever seen in a decade of SLSailing. When the teams finally roared over the Finish line, I wanted to jump up from my computer display and applaud! They were all winners! 🙂
Of course, things don’t really work out that way. The whole idea of a regatta is to pick winners and losers and to shine a bright light on those sailors with stand-out skill and technical prowess that can bring them to victory against the best sailors in Second Life.
In that Fourth critical race, each boat flashed evidence of unique sailing skill and champion style. My heart stopped a dozen times as I watched the fleet make hairpin turns around marks and execute tacks that forced boats within pixels of major collision.
The Finish turned out to be extremely close, but as the salt spray cleared at the end of race #4, the judges were unanimous: Team Waypoint – 1 was the regatta champion (skippers: Bunnie Mills, nozomimi Karu). In an amazing demonstration of WYC’s ability, the Regatta Second-Place Award went to their sister WYC boat: Team Waypoint – 2 (skipper: io LittleBoots).
You might ask: There were three boats! How close was that last race? How epic was the competition?
Well kids, here’s ‘how’ 🙂 : Team Pengzilla (skipper: Chaos Mandelbrot) made a series of smart tactical moves during the race that allowed him to break ahead, and PENGZILLA actually crossed the Finish line in front of the Waypoint boats. Unfortunately (at least for you Penguin fans out there), it turned out Chaos made a serious, split-second error when timing one critical tack. The judges witnessed the event, and all agreed to DSQ the Mandelbrot-Boozehound Duck Dynasty Team from that heat. 🙂 This was an important decision that determined the outcome, so Jane, Taku, and Hawk all chimed-in too, agreeing 100% with the Judges’ decision.
Chaos and Benny took their loss with typical grace, charm, and lots of laughter. They were happy with their performance, and were the very first to loudly congratulate the two incredible Waypoint winning teams!!
Here are the numbers as they played out:
1: Bunnie Mills IDWYC1 — 00:19:28
2: io LittleBoots ID444 — 00:21:42
3: Chaos Mandelbrot IDPZ09 — 00:22:09
4: James Munson IDJM58 — not Finished
1: io LittleBoots ID444 — 00:19:25
2: Bunnie Mills IDWYC1 — 00:20:46
3: Chaos Mandelbrot IDPZ09 — 00:27:58
4: James Munson IDJM58 — not Finished
1: Chaos Mandelbrot IDPZ09 — 00:20:57
2: nozomimi Karu IDWYC1 — 00:21:42
3: io LittleBoots ID444 — not Finished
1: nozomimi Karu IDWYC1 — 00:20:53
2: io LittleBoots ID444 — 00:21:27
Chaos Mandelbrot IDPZ09 — 00:20:39 (DSQ)
And here’s the analysis from SailWave:
As I said, I have much more to tell you about these wonderful races. Give me a couple days to edit the video, and then let’s talk about it!!!
WOOT!!! GO WAYPOINT!!!