Team USA45 had a great weekend of training at Oracle Racing. Friday started off early with a gym session with Oracle trainer Ryan. It was excellent for the team to get instruction and pushed hard on Oracle’s training equipment. They even had a mock trampoline set up for the guys to work out on. Following the work out the guys got to eat lunch at the Oracle lounge and were treated to some good food. Afterwards USA45 learned how to rig the AC45, raise the wing and then launch the boat. These were valuable lessons as we will have to do it this summer. Friday was wrapped up with a safety meeting which is always good to keep procedures fresh in our minds.
Saturday was an early start. Breakfast at 08:00 at the Oracle lounge and then off the dock at 09:00. We were sharing a boat rotation with The Youth Force Team so we got two 1.5 hour sessions. This was really good for us as we got a chance to rotate sailors and work out crew combinations. Saturday was too windy to sail in the main bay so we spent the day in South Bay. We had 10-15 knots of wind for some nice sailing. It was the first day in an AC45 in a long time and it showed. The guys were rusty and struggling to find their way. After a lot of work the team made some improvements by the end of the day. The day ended with a video debrief with myself and the Oracle coach. We left the base with a long list of things to work on and a reality that humbled the team. When we got back to SFYC, Leslie and Jim Reynolds and Lizz Ogletree had pizza and salads for the hungry team. This was a great way to end a long day.
Sunday started the same; 08:00 breakfast at Oracle and 09:00 off the dock. The team was fired up, focused and ready to show their skills. We stayed in South Bay again due to heavy winds in the bay. These winds started to trickle into South Bay as well and it increased all day. Team USA45 was awesome on Sunday. The video, the talks, the hard work showed. This was a different team on the water then was there on Saturday. It was really impressive to see the improvement. We pushed hard all day till Oracle canceled the rest of the day due to high winds.
After we got back to the dock, the team learned how to hoist the boat and drop the wing in a gusty 20-25 knot breeze. It was all hands on deck and full focus from the team, but they got it done and the boat back in the shed safely. This was then followed by another video debrief and a long Protector ride home to another great meal waiting for us.
The final report for the weekend is one immense improvement. It was the first weekend of the summer and the team is off to a great start. It was also a chance to have a bit of a reality check and see how much work we really have to do; and we have a lot. The team is focused and ready to put that work in. The gym is a focus now and as soon as the Extreme 40 arrives we will be hard at it on the water. Stand by for more later.