Of all the types of winter sailing to get involved in, the IC (interclub) also referred to as a sailing bathtub by some, has most likely become the best way to challenge your dinghy boat handling and knowledge of those close contact rules in Annapolis. The local fleet here team races the boats every other Saturday from late November into March. Every winter, the fleet takes their boats out for a three hour spin in the Severn River, not far from the club. To the tourist and non-sailors alike, it probably seems to appear more like some sort of insane ritual, in some ways that is true. Many of the ICer’s like to take that last sail up Ego Alley before heading into the dock just to get that reaction and of course to spark up some interest. It’s great, getting a few gasps, ohh’s and ahh’s from the spectators who are sipping their hot chocolate while taking a quick break from the holiday shopping or whatever it is that they do downtown in the daytime, I’m not sure.
Overall, team racing the boats has added that extra level of competition, skill development and of course fun compared to the plain ordinary around the buoy races they have conducted in the past. Don’t get me wrong; sailing around buoys is fun too. But team racing the boats is a gratifying mix up from summer racing. And possibly the most important reason, at least for the crew like me, is all that tacking. It helps to keep your mind off the frigid temperatures and your body in motion to stay warmer. This winter the fleet hopes to get four teams out on the water for the bi-weekly Saturday races. They also plan to have a few team race guest speakers come out and give a brief informational lesson before racing. They hold an after sail critique in the warm club house to help further the fleet’s skills and understanding. The IC is actually a great boat to practice team racing in. It’s a simple design (not a whole lot of rigging to tweak with while you’re out and about), just one sail to trim, and it holds two sailors per boat. So you’ve got that extra eye to report on another team’s thought of whipping out a sneaky move.
Arianne is the Recieving Manager here at APS. She’s responsible for checking in every product that we order and making sure it gets put out on the shelf or shipping right back out to our customers. She’s a regular crew with some of the local IC and Snipe sailors as well as a part-time belly dancer.