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SOL Poetry fans - Here's my first contribution to the PSfP forum, from the Buenos Aires to Rio race. A running narrative of events as my race progressed. Apologies for my verbosity - it's a bit lengthy...

Sunday March 13
A virtual race is now calling to me
With virtual boat on a virtual sea
And virtual crew who all trim to perfection
But all-too-real skippers, yes quite the collection!

We're sailing a race from yon BA to Rio
La Plata, Atlantic; there's so much to see-o!
The start wind is ugly, upwind we must go
In light fluky air that will challenge us so.

The race has begun, and the split is emerging.
Some starboard, some port. The Porters are surging!
But better breeze teases we boats going north;
We'll see if it works as the fleet sallies forth.

The port tackers hug the shoreline to the south
We northerners crack to speed up toward the mouth
Who has the right plan? We will know soon enough;
We northerners reach while the southerners luff!

I'm seat-of-the-pants, for short SOTP.
qtVlm is too complex for me.
That means that I pick my own courses and turn points
But often get schooled with some too-painful learn points! 8^O

Tuesday, March 14
Punta del Este shows quite the division
The northerners tack for their inside course vision
The southerners look for a much bigger breeze
Who will be right? Who will win this with ease?

So many great SOLers QT sent far south
Then mischievous WXes punched them in the mouth.
Still, 'twixt here and Rio there's lots of blue goo,
And Southers are charging. Who knows what they'll do?

With Este behind us Satori is first
The Southers are looking like they got the worst.
I'm sitting in second, with Zorba behind me
I'm hoping his magic will not ever find me (yeah, not bloody likely!)

As SOTPer I'm seldom up front
So in this race I'm glad that I'm in the hunt!
With Satori leading and showing the way
I'm hopeful that I can keep Zorba at bay!

The Southers have finally found a nice breeze
Their maximum boatspeed is now theirs to seize.
And look! A nice lefty is lifting them nicely
As long as they sail a fast course quite precisely.

Wednesday, March 15
On starboard, on port, all the crossings await;
We all stand awaiting the sign of our fate!
The early advantage of Porters is easing;
The Starboards are finding their lift to be pleasing.

The South Atlantic must be lovely to see
But it's been all upwind from Aires of B.
I'm grateful that rather than being at sea
I'm toasty, warm, dry, and I'm sipping some tea!

Satori flopped over, to starboard he tacked,
And Zorba did likewise. That board is now packed.
My DC agrees. Oh yes, I'll do the same,
I really do love the intrigue of this game!

OK - I flopped over, and Zorba's quite handsome!
I know 'cause he's only 10 feet from my transom.
But now he tacked back. Oh my no - do I cover?
You bet I do, else my success might be over...

The darkness has fallen. We sail through the night.
So what will transpire between now and first light?
The WXes will vex us, no sleep will we see,
But bourbon in hand I will steer my SC. (70, that is.)

The hunt pack is sniffing, they've hit on a scent;
We leaders are feeling the heat that was pent.
The blue goo is looming; who'll play it the best?
Should we stay east? Or should we head west?

A lifty I'm feeling. O glorious day!
Until the next header should wander my way.
I'm in good position, my foe in my lee,
Will he pull ahead? Or will it be me?

A long tack on Starboard is now in our sight
There may yet be time for some sleep this good night.
But who knows what nonsense the next WX will muster?
Will wind drop to nothing, or blow a big bluster?

Satori continues to maintain the lead
And Zorba, Great Zorba, he makes me pay heed.
The fleet charges forward, our heels they are nipping,
Are we holding distance? Or might we be slipping?

The beaches in Rio I hear are the best
And getting there quickly is this week's SOL test.
My crew is a-trimming like they've never seen ya
So they can be first for a sweet Caipirinha!

Satori, me, Zorba, we're still in the lead
Then Happy and Andy and Brandy, indeed!
Pit and Sir Mirek contend yet again,
Musigny and Freyja round out the top ten.

Porto Alegre is off in the west
We're 100 offshore, with no time to rest
A big blue goo bubble is forming ahead
Oh crap...

Thursday 3/17
So, last night my crew grabbed a few hours of snooze
But ere now this morning I'm feeling the blues
'Cause Zorba, great Zorba, reached off and left me
And decreased my standing from second to three.

Now HappyHour's threatening, he's nearly abeam!
The hunt pack behind him, a phalanxing team!
450 remaining. The wind's looking iffy.
Here's hoping we get to Rio in a jiffy!

Criciuma's abeam now, a long ways away.
The wind? It has backed to the northwest today.
We're reaching up northeast to miss the blue goo
That reaches from shore to slow down you-know-who.

Satori has legged out, now 2 hours ahead.
I wish that he'd taken a bad course instead!
Great Zorba continues to sail fast and flaunt me
My snooziage from last night continues to haunt me.

120 True Angle, fat part of the polar
It's good to sail fastest if you are a SOLer!
We Easters are reaching to pass the blue goo
And hold tightly onto our race standings too.

The folks who went inside are toughing it out;
Their squirrelly winds turning them all about.
They're close to the rhumb line, of that I am certain
But in flukey air they are sure to be hurtin'.

Our pressure's decreasing. Blue goo comes our way.
How much will it hurt us? Well, that's tough to say.
The wind's also veering; more forward it goes.
Soon hard on the wind as the northerly blows.

Satori heads up. And then Zorba does too.
On port tack, just one degree or maybe two.
Makes sense with the wind going right in a bit
And we are now passing the worst blue goo...uh, stuff.

380 to go, and the blue's almost done!
The hunt group is pressing - I'm under the gun.
I'm on Zorba's quarter, I have to stay close!
If he gets away, I will be quite morose.

I'm worried; my 3rd is at risk, don't remind me!
'Cause SOL superstars are right behind me.
My mantra is cover, and cover some more,
And never do dumb stuff that opens a door.

Happy, Sir Mirek, and Pit - I must mind them!
With Brandy, and Rafa, and Rumskib behind them.
True SOL royalty, race wins galore.
I'm wondering: can I indeed grab a score?

The green breeze is teasing, then drawing away.
I still hope that we will get to it today!
We're close reaching parallel to the rhumb line
The miles are passing. We're doing just fine.

350 to go. Yes, a marathon race!
Sailing along, the wind's now in my face.
Nighttime is here, and my crew wants their rum.
I'm worried; what challenges will tonight come?

Satori and Zorba, I sail in your wake.
I'm yearning to pass you though, for goodness' sake!
The three of us now have been leading for days.
Please, wind gods, ensure that our nighttime course pays!

The die is now cast, I must mind my DCs.
No sleeping for me lest my fast steering cease.
My workday tomorrow will be a disaster
But worth it if it means that I can sail faster!

Friday 3/18
A straight course we steered as we sailed through the night
But now the wind's veering, that is, going right.
So now we all steer a new course slowly arcing
To make sure we keep sailing fast and not parking.

The veering continues, wind now from northeast.
I tell you, this upwind-y slog is a beast!
At least we're in fast boats that sail well to weather;
Before long we'll all be in Rio, together!

Except those inside. They have fallen behind.
I feel for them, but truth be told I don't mind.
Their light fluky air has made progress quite slow
We'll save them a space at the bar in Rio!

Staying in phase is the name of the game now
Taking a flyer gives no claim to fame now.
Nothing to gain now by splitting away
And lots, LOTS to lose should I go my own way.

I may have been hasty re those boats inside.
They fell behind, true, but that may be belied.
They're lifted, and sailing straight toward Rio;
Do they have advantage with not far to go?

As our new breeze strengthens, it keeps going right
A mixed bag for sure but I think it's all right.
We'll tack in a bit, when the layline we reach
And then point our bows toward a white Rio beach!

Tack "in a bit"? Well yeah, 10 hours away.
It's not going to come till the end of the day.
Patience, my son! Ah, the finish is nearing.
And when we get there there'll be wine-ing and beer-ing!

Satori continues to lead us to Rio
Two hours ahead of Great Zorba and me-o
Will he make a slip? Do I have any chance?
I'll gladly accept anything fortune grants!

Zorba's ahead and to port of me now
I'm seeing his stern and he's seeing my bow.
We're pretty close by, neither one is yet gone;
"Excuse me, do you have any Grey Poupon?"

Happy's abeam and to starboard, oh dear.
If I should screw up he will pass me I fear!
So my Ps and Qs I will mind like a hawk
Until in yon Rio we're safe at the dock.

And then there's Sir Mirek, behind just a tad.
He'll pass me for sure should I do something bad!
Again I must ask, lest confusion arise;
How in the heck am I here with these guys?

And let's not discount our friends Pit and Rumskib
Who've capitalized on each newly sent GRIB.
They're in the lead group, yes they're not far away.
One wonders what magic they'll work up today!

On Dasher! On Dancer! On Donner and Blitzen!
My genoa's up, my code 0 is fritzin'.
We're hard on the wind once again, more's the pity
This northerly wind at this point is quite - um, unfortunate.

I'm thinking about all those boats way out left
If they get good breeze they could leave me bereft.
We easters enjoy this amazing right shift
It sets us up for a starboard tack night shift.

Rio on Saturday! Party time truly!
Though after this upwind, we'll be black and blue-ly.
This beating upwind makes me yearn for Montana
Or better yet - drinks on the Copacabana!

We're into the green now. My boatspeed is rocking!
250 to go and the wind is still clocking.
Just 6 hours to tack time, and whee! We're about!
Who'll win, place, and show? In mere hours we'll find out!

175 and we're all heading north.
We're all now on starboard. We're all going forth!
The final leg into yon Rio we're on.
We're striving for speed - but Satori is gone!

Satori is way out in front, don't you see,
And Zorba, great Zorba, is ahead of me.
Happy is crossing my wake on a reach
He's hoping that he will beat me to the beach.

We're all cracking off since there's blue near the shore
Big shift to the right, up to 90 and more.
We're keeping it low, we will heat at the shift
We'll capitalize on the gigantic lift.

Hey Happy, I see you there, reaching below me!
I know you are doing your best just to snow me.
I'm tempted to reach off to keep pace with you
But then, I think that's not the right thing to do.

Another long night looms ahead. There's no sleeping.
A watch of my competitors I'll be keeping.
I've set my alarms, wake me up once an hour,
I hope that my iPhone does not lose its power!

Saturday 3/19
A new day has dawned, and yon Rio, it beckons!
It feels like we'll be there in just a few seconds.
But blue goo approaches. It's right in our way.
It's going to make things much slower today.

Satori's way out there, no hope of him catching.
I'm right behind Zorba. His course I am matching.
And Happy's behind me. He chased me all night
But thankfully he's still right there in my sight.

The big lift is coming to us, in an hour.
We'll all turn to maximize awesome wind power.
The home stretch! Our weeklong pursuit nears its ending!
Tonight at the bar our elbows we'll be bending!

We're into the blue now - we head to the beach!
Slow going for sure, but at least it's a reach.
And not far to go so the pain will end shortly,
And then Miller Time! as we all sail into port-ly.

There's SLIs lurking just shy of the finish;
A BBQ there your results could diminish.
So watch your approach; yes, be sure that you do!
So you can avoid one last race BBQ.

Just 40 to go, the approach is all planned.
The finish is nearing - the end is at hand!
Just one jibe to go before crossing the line
Still holding in third so I'm feeling just fine!

Satori's unchallenged, he's way out ahead.
Zorba's still second, wish I were instead!
Still, I'm sitting third, I should hope for no more.
And Happy comes next to round out the top four.

From there a brief gap, then the chase group is nearing.
Contention is fierce! competition is searing.
SOL Superstars doing their best
To successfully reign supreme in their quest.

Now just 10 remaining. We're close to the finish.
Satori has crossed! He's cemented his win-ish!
Great Zorba's ahead still, catch him? Don't think so,
But I will sail hard till there's nowhere to go!

2 hours and change, and the wind, it keeps dropping.
In one hour ten the wind's totally flopping.
It's veering from east to the west, quite the shift!
A jibe will be needed in that massive lift.

And Happy's still back there, I must stay aware!
Will he cut my lead? And will he pass me there?
I'm hoping I have enough lead in the bank
That I can keep third even if I should tank.

Ugh. 2 miles to go but I'm going WAY slow.
The wind's next to nothing. So almost no go.
My speed's less than 1 knot. The line is abeam-a.
A drink is calling me from Ipanema! (Finally! A rhyme for "Ipanema"! Well, sorta.)

Now 1 mile to go, and my jibe is completed.
On course for the finish at last! I'm depleted.
A glass of Wild Turkey is now right here at hand
To toast when I finish this race oh so grand!

I'm finally just 15 minutes away.
It feels like the last mile took most of today.
The wind is now bulding - my speed's above two!
It's frustrating finishing in this blue goo!

Hooray! I am done! I have finished this race!
I'm truly delighted. I crossed in third place!
A podium finish! For me that's quite rare.
But I am tremendously thrilled to be there!

Thanks to all racers - you make this such fun!
And thanks to the admins - we sail 'cause YOU run.
Congrats to all finishers - geeze, what a test!
Satori and Zorba? You two were the best!

This race was fun, sure, but results don't deceive me;
For me most was just pure dumb luck, please believe me!
I'd like to be smarter, I know that I should...
But deep down I'd rather be lucky than good! 8^)

Epilog
In closing: I've relished creating this verse
It's been lots of fun as my course I rehearse.
If you have enjoyed it, please please let me know!
For future SOL races I'll keep up the show.
But if it annoyed you, please tell me that too;
Annoying you is the last thing I would do!
I'm happy to shut up and throttle my posts
And leave all the narratives to our fine hosts.

--- Last Edited by sailj29 at 2022-03-20 20:29:24 ---
SJ29,
I just read your PSfP and found it to be fantastic. I have no idea why I haven't seen it as it is nearly 18 months old.
I love how you captured your thoughts and your moves. No matter now much success a SOLer has, having the MASTER SOLers chasing you leaves a lump in your stomach.
Well done,
Doug (Freyja) 😊

--- Last Edited by Freyja at 2023-08-27 00:22:36 ---
Glad to hear that

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