White Bear Sailing School-based Mahtomedi HS sailing team finished 2nd in the first high school sailing event of the 2013 spring season. Sailor’s Will Crary, Maria Markoe, Peter Brady, Thor Hsu, and Claire Clark arrived to Belmont Harbor near Chicago on Saturday morning, greeted by a shining sun and a light brisk breeze, but also a coating of ice that had set on the harbor overnight. After a few hours of sunlight and some icebreaking crews that were sent out midmorning, the racing was able to begin just before noon in a 7 knot northerly breeze. Temperatures hovered right around 32 degrees with an even lower wind chill. Racing continued through the afternoon in light patchy wind, with Belmont’s characteristic unpredictable puffs continually mixing the fleet and forcing the sailors to remain patient and on their toes. The temperatures began to drop as the sun went down, but the race committee pushed through to 6:15pm to finish the rotation with 10 races in each division.
Though the chances of racing on Sunday looked poor, the conditions actually proved fantastic through early Sunday afternoon. The breeze had shifted to the east overnight and though blowing pretty hard out on the lake, the conditions inside the harbor proved to be great! The temperatures were what really challenged the sailors with wind chills in the 20s. The wind started around 7-9 knots in the morning, with gusts a bit higher, and built throughout the day until 1:30pm when racing was called. The hearty race committee did an awesome job keeping the races moving and getting a total of 17 races off in each division. Close racing at the top of the fleet, and a lot of lead changes throughout the day!