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2022 Puerto Vallarta Race at San Diego Yacht Club - Day 8

by San Diego Yacht Club 17 Mar 19:03 PDT March 10-18, 2022

Friday's recap will feature a brief of tactical and class specific choices made during the regatta... all the stuff you'll want to know to do well in the 2024 PV Race.

But tonight in Puerto Vallarta there are a lot of crews celebrating camaraderie and the conclusion of a great experience. Some years are faster (better?) then others and this will rank as a really good one.

The OA believes whether you enter to win, or just to participate - you still have to sail the miles and cross the finish line. They also believe winning comes in a variety of forms. If you don't sail all the miles - and if this event had a Secretary of the Navy award for fortitude and effort, it would go to BlueFlash. They had a crew injury and put them ashore in Turtle Bay. A crew member sustained broken ribs and a stable spine fracture from a fall into the cockpit during a sail maneuver, but toughed his way through an overnight bus ride up the Baja peninsula to Tijuana to walk across the border and a trip to the emergency ER while the skipper solo-delivered the boat 400 miles upwind back to San Diego.

To set an elapsed time or overall record you start with a big boat and a lot of highly experienced crew. Then you go fast. Do you sail the shortest course? For 2022, First to Finish and new Monohull Elapsed Time record winner Pyewacket V70, actually sailed the greatest number of miles (1223) in the 2022 fleet to do it. Rio100 sailed 1136 total miles, only 10 less than their record run in 2016, while breaking her own time record this year.

By comparison in Class 6, 2nd place finisher Akaw! sailed the least total number of miles in the race (1075).

And while we're looking at numbers:

Average Miles: 1,153
Median Miles: 1,148
Total Fleet Miles: 33,425

Back to winning: For the organizing authority to 'win', it takes a village doing a lot of work around the clock and some luck. Kudos to Regatta Co-Chairs Ben Mitchell and Karen Busch for their 2nd tour at the regatta helm, and 5th running as critical support persons. Supporting Ben and Karen is a small group of dedicated members; Joanne O'Dea to assist with anything, Greg Stewart helping with handicapping and boat information, SDYC Commodore Jeff Tadder, Vice Commodore Jack Leer, Jr. Staff Commodore Mike Morton, and Director Alli Bell all to greet boats and run errands. And then there's Gabby Pacheco. As 30+ year San Diego Yacht Club employee, Gabby is a PV Race secret weapon, like the "Whomper" (#WindTheMovie, Google it if you don't know). He is the consummate SDYC ambassador, but his genuine character and natural ability to warm people up deserves high praise. This manifests as event support, diplomacy and energy on behalf of SDYC and all the competitors. Whether he was building goodwill with the harbormaster or helping the Immigration Officials locate competitors, translating conversations with a yelling port pilot at 2 am, or finding food at 7 am for a tired dock crew, he deserves the MVP award for making this event happen.

At the dock, the OA caught up with racers as they were arriving to give us their impressions of this year's race and life onboard.

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