Andrew Dow McCrae and Peter Kelly are on the front page of Sailing Anarchy, with this great shot from the recent HPDO regatta in Rye, NY. Thanks to Sailing Anarchy for the kind words and great exposure for the Fireball!
Pat Crump and Jane Millican have recaptured the US Championship after sailing a nearly perfect regatta at the American Yacht Club as part of the Heineken High Performance Dinghy Open (HPDO). Rob Levy and Jon Driver finished second followed Saturday saw close racing in 15 to 18 knots in relatively stable air until Race 4. After a significant shift to the right the RC opted to send the fleet off on a W/L course. The race was abandoned at the “weather” mark because the fleet had sailed to the gybe mark intended for subsequent classes. Race 4B produced a similar error as the fleet followed the leader again to a gybe mark. However the lack of an offset mark allowed most of the fleet to quickly realize their error and sail to the correct mark. Sunday was forecast to be cold, wet and light air. Sailing out to the course it wasn’t raining and the wind was stronger than forecast. However after one race was completed the wind began to die. Race 6 was completed despite a 140 degree shift that had boats beating to the leeward mark and trying to fly kites going to the windward mark against leftover chop with a dying breeze. With the wind gone, rain falling and a lot of cold sailors, racing was called for the day. As usual the American Yacht Club hosted a great event. The hospitality of AYC members in opening their homes and billeting sailors is outstanding. Great Racing, Great Friends and Great Beer by Heineken….the perfect recipe.
Screwball has its own special traditions. Unlike all other regattas during the sailing season when the wind and action is unpredictable, Screwball is pretty much guaranteed to be exciting and eventful. This year was truly memorable. Mother Nature spoiled us with one day of light and erratically shifty conditions, followed by two days of 25-30 knot winds and is led to much swimming by every participant throughout the entire weekend. Including 3 boats on the start-line of one race with 45 seconds before the gun! Let’s just say the race committee got a pretty good show!!! However, the action had already started back on shore with Tom and Pierre, who on Friday just two hours before the first gun, had their boat upside down in the barn and were still sanding away. But with some teamwork and a bit of luck, they managed to pull everything together and were sailing just in time for the start. Sometimes, luck does run out…rather quickly when it comes to Tom and Pierre. They not only lost their newly installed slot gaskets once, but twice!! Is third time the charm??!! With winds like we had, one can only imagine that boat breakage is inevitable. And you would be right! Nic and Stephen experienced this first hand when their rudder ripped out of their transom. Poor boat! Once everyone was back on-land, dry and warm, we were presented with a delicious Mexican themed dinner Saturday night. We even had a great band playing called: Break in the Silence. Thank you very much Shane, Val, Declan and Matys for being our musicians for the night! I would like to thank Luka Bartulovic for taking some awesome pictures of us in action over the weekend. Please visit his site to check those out (www.kalu.ca). Finally, for the boring part…the Screwball XXXI podium finishes! Nic and Stephen finished in 3rd place, followed by Rune and Jochen in 2nd place and Tom and Joe in 1st place! Thank you very much to everyone who had a part in this regatta and making it as enjoyable as it always is!!
Rob and Francis Thompson are the winners of the BC Championship held at Royal Victoria Yacht Club over the weekend. Ten boats participated in the event following Evelyn “Mother Hen/Evil Twin” Chisholm’s master plan which called for mixing and matching of crews and boats to accommodate some boatless itinerants from Ottawa and Portland. As a result Mike McEvoy sailed with Debra Dietch in Mark Cumming’s boat, Panther Larkin was teamed with Simon Pearson in Jamie Cox’s boat and Greg Desilets sailed with Shannon Gallins in Kelly’s boat. Other highlights included the return of Iain McEvoy after being MIA for several years and the unexpected appearance of Chris and Tracey Mills sailing their new to them (ex Mel Steffin) Fireball. Light air prevailed through the weekend and as usual in Cadboro Bay the tide was as much a factor as the wind. Lake sailors McEvoy and Dietch led the fleet for much of the second and third races after going the wrong way in race 1 but were unable to hold on for the win. Better boat handling and superior unwind speed gave Rob and Francis two bullets and the lead at the end of day 1. With everyone having a bad race counting all were hoping for a couple of races Sunday in order to get a drop. The wind never arrived and so the final results were Rob and Francis in first, Gary Bishop and Rob Warren second and Panther and Simon in third on the tie breaker.