If you've been sailing around City Island for years, you know the local waters inside and out. You could navigate around Eastchester Bay in your sleep, and have every little eddy and geographic wind shift burned into your memory. And if you feel like leaving the bay, you habitually turn left at Big Tom. Boring.
This year, we're going to try something new. Instead of turning left, we're going to turn right and head down the East River. But, that's crazy, you say. There's no good sailing down there. And the currents are insane. Time it wrong, and you'll get flushed down the river and out through Hell Gate. Well, the first part is just plain untrue; there's lots of great sailing between the bridges, and beyond. And, while the flushing part can be true, we've done our homework with the tide tables to ensure favorable currents for the race.
From Cuban Ledge, it's a short (and familiar) leg down to Throgs neck, then hang a right. But don't just plug the right bouy into your GPS. If you want to be fast, you'll need to play the current for all it's worth. Moving water is free speed. If we've crunched the numbers right, the current should be turning just about the time you get to the turning mark, and then you get to play the current back the other way. We're running a pursuit start. That means we pre-calculate your PHRF time-on-distance correction and give everybody their own start time. If everybody sails to their rating, and we've done our math right, and picked the right turning mark, and the wind and current gods smile upon us, the entire fleet should finish together.
We're aiming to get everybody finished by mid afternoon. Then, it's back to the clubhouse for a party on the deck.
Watch this space for Sailing Instructions and registration information to be posted soon.