2013 Geneva Spring Regatta
Day-1, Three Races
Hugh Sugar, Tim Sugar, Darby Sugar, and Annie Sugar sailing H-8 won their first regatta race ever to start off the 2013 season. So exciting and rewarding to see them leading most of the race with a light over stand at the second windward mark to let Ken Wruk (I-71) sneak inside of them momentarily but H-8 jibed first and got over Ken to lead to the downwind finish. Hugh had a second row start but was able to complete a tack onto port with a millimeter to spare as their bow swung by the gunnel of a starboard tack boat - they were first onto port right in front of the yacht club in a nice streak of breeze taking them up the south shore in a NE wind of 8mph. Ken Wruk followed Sugar around the first mark as a long line of spinnaker scows set out for the leeward mark. Pat Heaney (H-13) had a great escape from the parade about 300 yards from the weather mark as he was the first to jibe away onto port in a new downer breeze which pulled him into second at the leeward mark. David Strothman (M-10) passed the most boats going from the high teens to a top 5 finish. Augie Barkow (V-37) struggled and slipped the most boats going from 3rd at the first mark to 12th at the finish - apparently it can happen to the very best as well. The windward legs took 14-15 minutes and the leeward legs took 9-10 minutes. The course was a W-4.
The second race got off after several "practice" starts. The wind had become lighter and a little unsettled between races and was an indication this would turn into a contest of appearing to look cool as you tore your hair out. Lee Alnes (W-25), David Irmscher (WA-00), and Vincent Porter (I-2) came from the north shore area in a new wind to lead at the mark. Vincent seemed to be able to sail deeper and just as fast as the others to lead at the leeward mark. Augie Barkow decided enough was enough and he did not plan to drop boats this race, holding steady in the 6-7 range before finishing 3rd behind Alnes while Vincent Porter took the gun. Others mixing it up in the top 6 places were Peter Maas (X-20) and David Strothman (M10), who again marched steadily up from 11th place early to 5th at the finish. The boat that passed the most boats was none other than World Champion Brian Porter (I-49) managing to go from very last place at the leeward mark (which did NOT include a tip over, penalty circle, or an OCS) to 15 at the finish. Leg times were: 20 minutes up, 14 down, 20 up, and 27 down.
The third race got off clean after a postponement ashore waiting for a new wind to fill in. It came from the SE and the boats off the leeward end of the line looked great but faded a little near the windward mark as the breeze had clocked ever so slightly to allow Lee Alnes (W-25), coming from the right, to lead the group off the leeward end of the starting line: David Strothman (M-10), Chris Jewett (M-3), Peter Strothman (I-9), Jeff Bonanni (LE-73) [not sure where he was at the start], and Vincent Porter (I-2). This is the group that swaped places for a few legs. David Strothman and Peter Strothman split with Vincent and Lee after the last leeward mark and that put them in the lead for a bit. Vincent split from the two Strothmans late in the leg and that was enough to get him passed one of them - David won with Vincent second, Peter third, and Lee fourth. Peter Mass sailed to a solid 5th place finish, followed by Jeff Bonanni. Jeff came all the way from Little Egg Harbor NJ for this event - and will be back in September for the National Championship Regatta which will be held on Lake Geneva. Three boats came from Grand Lake Colorado - thank you for making the trip!
Last Day, 4th and Final Race
Sailors showed up Sunday morning to a calm lake with patches of wind here and there to tickle the RC just enough that they would go out and check conditions. Finally 45 minutes before the noon deadline the RC announced a warning signal would happen at 11:40. The wind was SE 7-9 mph by the start time and built to 10-14 mph by the finish with one course change as the wind backed some after the first leg. A W5 course was set and leg times were: 8 minutes upwind, 6 downwind, 10 up, 5 down, and 9 up to the finish. It didn’t seem like a short course at all – these boats are just so darn fast!
Brian Porter (I-49) meant business after being LAST around a leeward mark the day before – [I guess that’s what happens when you poke an E-Scow legend in a class news article]. Brian wanted the leeward end and took it with good speed heading for the point where he tacked to port crossing all but Chris Jewett (M3). They were followed by Matt Schmidt (V-736), Augie Barkow V-37), Vincent Porter (I-2), Jeff Bonanni (LE-73), Peter Strothman (I-9), and Rob Mahony (J-515). The first downwind was a long starboard and only one boat jibed away in the first ¾ of a mile – and no, it didn’t help them catch up! Augie Barkow and Peter Strothman edged up in the standings on the next two legs at the expense of Matt Schmidt and Chris Jewett. Barkow had a quick tack onto a good shift at the leeward mark and moved into the lead which he held onto for a lap. Brian Porter got by Augie Barkow on the last upwind leg but Peter Strothman and Matt Schmidt were close and all four boats were going for max speed to get any advantage they could. Barkow had to wait until the last 400 yards before indicating a tacking duel or risk of losing Strothman and Schmidt. Porter made 3-4 covering tacks and Barkow wasn’t able to escape and finished a very close second. Next was Strothman, Schmidt, Jeff Bonanni, Vincent Porter, and Tim Sugar (H-8) sailing very solid and steadily moving up 7 places in the race.
For regatta second place Lee Alnes (W-25) was in a fight with David Strothman (M-10). Lee had to keep at least one boat between them in the race to finish second for the regatta. David made it easier as 8 boats separated them at the first mark but at each mark Strothman was closing in – falling short by a couple of boats by the finish.