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Pat Broderick's Nancy in the Sausalito YC Midwinters. ©2016 Roxanne Fairbairn/
Sausalito Chili Midwinters

January 5, 2016

Sausalito Yacht Club's Sunday Chili Midwinter race attracted 21 boats whose crews challenged the rainy weather forecasts to come out racing on January 3. Sunday morning began according to the plan with a light sprinkle as crews donned layers of foul weather gear and prepared their boats for a wet afternoon. But the weather gods interceded, trumped the forecast gurus, and provided a delightful afternoon of racing. No rain and a nice northerly breeze along with the 2.5-knot ebb made for a wonderful intro to racing in 2016.

Greg Arkus' Tartan Ten Abba-Zaba. ©2016 Roxanne Fairbairn/

From their quiver of possibilities, SYC Race Committee selected a 6.8-mile course for the spinnaker fleets and shorter 3.5-mile course for the non-spinnaker boats. The spinnaker boats started near Little Harding Rock, rounded Sausalito Entrance Marker #2 as the windward mark, and ran before the northerly wind across to a temporary mark replacing YRA #6 at Fort Mason. The final leg was a beat back across the ebb to the finish at Little Harding.

The spinnaker fleets stayed high on the run across to San Francisco and even higher on the beat back, coming close to Alcatraz Island before tacking down toward Little Harding. An outgoing dry cargo ship and slowly moving incoming tanker helped make the beat back even more interesting.

Frank Lawler's Santana 22 Tackful. ©2016 Roxanne Fairbairn/

The non-spinnaker boats sailed the same first leg, but ended their wing-on-wing runs at Harding Rock before beating back to the finish line. Most non-spinnaker boats were safely back in their berths and their crews at the SYC Clubhouse enjoying the complimentary chili before the spinnaker boats finished their race.

La Mer
Randy Grenier's Newport 30 La Mer, sailing wing on wing. ©2016 Roxanne Fairbairn/

Twenty boats turned out, and those that didn't missed a great afternoon on San Francisco Bay. Series standings are available at The next race will be on February 7.

— Pat Broderick

Glenn Isaacson's Schumacher 40 Q. ©2016 Roxanne Fairbairn/

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