Short Tacks – March 2010

Who Dat? Rumors that the Marblehead police had to be called in to contain the enthusiasm of a New Orleans woman after her Saints beat the Colts in the Super Bowl were greatly exaggerated. Neighbors of the West Shore Drive couple seemed to take it all in stride, wondering aloud, “Who dat crazy woman screaming?”

Measurement Certificates The class has proposed amendments to the bylaws that, for the first time, would introduce measurement certificates to our class. You can review the proposal at the class website and comment at Measurement certificates are long overdue, and should serve to keep compliant all of our boats and not just those who sail Nationals. They also will vastly streamline the measurement process at Nationals. Class members can vote online or by paper ballot, and voting will close on April 30th .

Pre-Launch Measurement In case you missed it, Nationals will be sailed in Marblehead this year, and every boat that plans to compete will have to be measured. As in years past, the measurement process involves measuring rigs, which can only be done while the rig is out of the boat. As none of us will want to pull our rigs once they are stepped and tuned, measurer Jerry Blouin is offering to measure our boats in the spring before we launch. Because the class’s measurement certificate proposal is still in process, we might still have to repeat a portion of the measurement prior to the event. But measuring in the spring before we launch should prevent us from having to pull our rigs mid-season and dramatically facilitate the nationals measurement process. So do yourself and your friends on the Nationals committee a favor and give Jerry a call this spring before you launch. He can be reached at 781-990-3548. Update From The Technical Committee The Technical Committee has issued a FAQ regarding electronic compasses, specifically the TACKTICK product. They are a no-no. Some of these have been used in recent years and their use has been questioned. The class rule does allow an electronic compass but only if it only provides real time heading information. The TACKTICK product can do more than that. If you find a simple digital compass with only heading information that would be okay, but no one seems able to find one. Analog is us.

Fleet 5 Web Site Getting A Facelift We all owe a tip of the hat to Rick Berliner, who has taken it upon himself to upgrade our fleet’s web site. But to get the job done, Rick needs our help. He wants to build a permanent archive that includes photos, historical racing results going back as far as we can, and historical newsletters. So search your archives, and if you have anything that might help, please forward it along to Rick at

MRA Update MRA continues its winter work of preparing a robust season of racing for us and the other Marblehead fleets. Three Fleet 5 members serve on MRA; Mike Lane, Charlie Pendleton and Kim Pandapas. In addition to their MRA contributions, these three also keep an eye out for the collective interests of Fleet 5. So you can direct any questions, comments or concerns you have about the MRA schedule to any of them. The next MRA meeting will be held on March 3rd and will include fleet reps, so if there is an issue you’d like to raise, please contact one of them before that meeting.

Three Races on MRA Days We’ve sailed two races per day for MRA for at least 15 seasons. However, there has been escalating interest in sailing a third race, as do several other fleets. This issue is again on the front burner, and we suspect that the majority now favors three races over two. So expect the question to be raised for a vote at the registration meeting on April 15.

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