South Sound Sailing Society has an abundance of racing sailors, along with more cruisers!. The SSSS racing community consists of PHRF, D-Fleet, dingy, and Star fleets; more that most of the yacht clubs within the State.
Our racers usually stay within the Olympia zip code, which is understandable with the dinghies and Stars. The opportunity exists, however, for the larger boats to sail out of this zip code. That opportunity is the Southern Sound Series.
The Series is four races: Winter Vashon 3 December 2016, Duwamish Head 7 January 2017, Toliva Shoal 18 February 2017, and the Islands race 18 March 2017. Each race is sponsored by a different yacht club.
So this invitation is offered to those larger boats who have not participated in the Series.
The benefits and challenges are numerous. The skipper must plan in greater detail than our local zip code races. Details include the delivery to Tacoma, Des Moines, and Gig Harbor and the return. Crew transportation, meals, and safety must be considered. The race strategy is similar to our own zip code racing but the distances are longer, around thirty miles. Talk with other SSSS racers who have participated in years past for advice and/or encouragement.
The races offer some stiffer competition from the racers up north. There are boats that are not found in our zip code: Transpac 52s, J-160, Santa Cruise 70, Riptide 35 and numerous newer high tech boats. South Sound racers that often dominate their class in Budd Inlet find that their match is often met with the boats from the Seattle area. This is a learning experience that benefits them upon their return to their zip code.
For those who are not high tech the Series offers two classes that do not require Pacific Handicap Racing Fleet handicaps and membership: The cruising class non-flying sails and the cruising class flying sails. This is a nice way to break into the Series to discover another fun way to race.
Perhaps most importantly are the new friendships made during the Series. At the parties before and after the race and on the race course, racers are always a fun group to be around. Just think about our own Toliva Shoal!.
So, you are encouraged to Sail out of your Zip Code!.
Dave Knowlton, Koosah
SSSS did well in the 2015-16 Southern Sound Series
Trophys at the June Meeting