WASZP Report from our Vice President

Our Vice President, David Loring competed in the Waszp Americas Championships March 18 – 21 at Richmond Yacht Club in San Francisco Bay. Below is his first hand report from the event…

Three of us from Charleston sailed the event, Otto DeMuth 21st, Reed Baldridge 5th and myself 13th.

Wow, what a regatta and a show of force from the top 3 sailors who found a wave to navigate the large chop in San Francisco Bay. Can’t say enough about the young talent in the class as top three were all under 21 and of very different weights ranging from 135lbs to 170+. This shows the versatility of the WASZP for sailors of sizes and age – like me at 48. Watching the women kick butt around the course was fun to see,  Pearl from Hawaii – at maybe 100lbs finished 17th with a bullet in one race.

Great article on Women in Waszp! 

Pearl and JP from Hawaii have qualified for the SailGP INSPIRE Grand Final during the WASZP Americas Championship 2022 photo copyright Bryan McDonald taken at Richmond Yacht Club, California and featuring the WASZP class

We raced in the Berkley Circle area of the Bay, which is about the best sailing venue in North America, if you have a chance – go to a regatta out of the Richmond Yacht Club ( amazing club and sailing waters ).

For me I was extremely challenged by the sea state, the waves in San Fransico Bay were larger than I have sailed in the WASZP. I loved those waves in the laser a long time ago when I spent a summer in San Fran training for the Olympics ( at 21 years old ), but in a foiling WASZP completely different. Foiling boats like the Moth and Waszp sail very easily in flat water and is where we sail our regattas in the US, so none of the US sailors had experience in waves including myself. I had put a ton of time in the boat here in Charleston and felt ready, but the waves added an entirely new challenge that I was not prepared for.

When I say challenged, I did not finish a race without pitchpoling until Sunday!!!

This is normally not something I do ever in a regatta due to our flat-water venues. I learned something every day and took those learning to the water, mostly in boat setup. Key for these boats in making sure the wand is working very hard to keep the boat from exploding out of the water causing the pitch pole. In hindsight maybe I should have been swimming in the pool for physical fitness due to the amount of swimming I did. 

Key learning for all to take in:

  • Practice makes perfect and the practice needs to be in the conditions you are getting ready to sail in ( wind, current, waves, temp etc )
  • Learn all the time ( “quote from my dad, if you are winning everyone else is getting better, when you lose make sure you are learning from the loss” ) Losing makes you better, winning make others around you better! Well it feels good to win, but losing is better for your sailing in the long run.
  • Have fun – I had a great time and enjoyed meeting these young incredible sailors from around the globe, excited to see where they go in their careers.

What great about sailing is at 48 I can still compete against kids my daughter’s age in a high performance foiling singlehanded.