In last summer's Pacific Cup race, the high-pressure system was particularly round and stationed in a more northerly position than usual. With a staggered start over the week of June 28 to July 2, the first boats set a more traditional southerly course out of San Francisco. When the four-boat racing class that included Icon started on July 2, the high had slid north, and boats were able to sail the shortest route and maintain breeze. Some even sailed north of the shortest route on a heading that in other years would pass through the windless center. Meanwhile, the isobar spacing along the southern route was wider, resulting in lighter winds of insufficient strength to overcome the distance sailed. Nonetheless, the 16-knot average wind strength we saw on Icon for much of the trip made for some great downwind sailing.