By Kristina Miller
For 76 years, sailors have flooded the bay to participate in the annual Flight of the Lasers regatta. This year the big day was July 24, and it was a blast. The conditions were great with the wind blowing southwest at an average of 4.5 miles per hour, and the sun shining on the Bay. Sailors of all ages, wearing everything from no shirts to ghillie suits, came out to rig their boats and get out to the course by 1 p.m. sharp.
This was my first year sailing in this regatta, but my second year sailing Lasers. At first, I was a little intimidated to go out and sail with many of the best sailors in the bay, but once I got to the starting line and saw all the smiles, I knew this race was going to be fun.
The race started, and from then on I concentrated on doing well while having a good time. Like most Laser races, the boats flew across the bay in the light wind that there was, and the race was done in just under two hours. There was a lot of upwind and downwind sailing, and both full rigs and radials kept a steady pace throughout the course. The course took us around the bay; from U mark all the way past the Balboa Pavilion.
This year’s regatta was a huge success, and everyone had a great time out on the bay. The race finished, and trophies were awarded. Wills Johnson won for best costume, best decorated boat went to Hailey Newett, and Philip Thompson won first place overall.
This year was particularly special to me, also, since I won an award for being the first girl to finish.
All who participated in the Flight of the Lasers regatta this year was so nice and friendly – and great sailors.