Sunday, November 04, 2012

Season Champion

I've been a little bit distracted lately and haven't blogged. But I thought I should enter this one...
After 10 seasons I, with the help of numerous crew, too many to count, have succeeded in accomplishing all of my goals in regards to racing Folkboats on San Francisco Bay. The goal was to put my name on every trophy my father Chuck Kaiser did. The majors were the Wednesday Evening series (he had 13 of those), the single handed race, the Woodies Regatta and the WBRA season champion (he won that 7 times). With the completion of winning this season all those goals have been completed. Ive also been added to the 2nd place perpetual 4 times. The best he ever did in the internationals was 3rd. We've equalled or bettered that each time, including finishing 1st but losing in a tie breaker to Per Buch. I'm Ok with losing to a 2 time Gold Cup champion. So now everything changes for me and just in the nick of time.
I've lost my slip in the SF Marina. I was always on temporary status until the renovation project started and the legality of subletting has ended. So I moved to boat to Sausalito, which is biking distance to where I live. But it makes it more complicated to get to the racing. It's unlikely I'll make every race like I have over the last 10 years and I'm finally going to have to buy an engine. But a big part of me simply doesn't care anymore. I think about how driven I've been to win, how much time and money this silly hobby has cost and it feels a little selfish. I'm still planning to buy a new set of sails and get the bottom prepped right before the season begins, but I might not follow through on that. It's time to make some changes to the boat, things I didn't want to risk changing for fear it would hamper the progress of being consistent, which is probably the most important part of being successful. It's time to experiment with rig settings, jib leads, jumpers, sail cuts and see if I can actually learn and master the rules to this sport. I think I want to do some race committee too. I still want to win the SF Cup and ultimately be on the winning team representing the USA at the Gold Cup. It's also time to make some changes to me. I've been an ass at times on the water with crew that weren't up to my expectations and I'm sure it wasn't fun for them. I just hate making mistakes I know better than to make and sailing hasn't been fun unless we are winning. In fact, I haven't been sailing for the fun of it in years now and that has to change. The boat being closer to home should change that. It's also time to change the mast color too. It's been a few years since I painted it and I need to see under that paint before we cover it up again. I made a pledge to paint it special and if those people help me (Patrick and Kurt) I'll do it. I'll save the details until its finished.
For now, let it suffice to say I feel like a huge weight is off my shoulders. A weight I put there myself. A little hey dad, I'm as good as you were kind of weight. Many father/sons could understand I'm sure. I'm certainly happy to get that first season championship while my dad is still alive. It wouldn't have meant as much if I hadn't succeeded after the fact.
It's funny how a silly trophy has meant so much to me. And it seems now such a silly thing to have let this pursuit consume me so much. But it did and now it's done and time to create new goals, perhaps shift my focus to another sport for a while. Or perhaps enjoy being present more for my family. Yeah, that sounds right.


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