The weather forecast for Sunday, April 8 - the last day of frostbiting - was mid 40s, overcast skies, with fog and a constant drizzle, and wind out of the NE at 8-10 knots. Most sailors would not be eager to race in dinghies that tend to capsize easily, but this type of weather is to be expected if one is a "frostbiter". Only four teams of sailors were available to compete. Five races were completed; with the finish order the same for all five races. 1. Pedro Lorson/Mimi Berry (#536), 2. Ted Toombs/Monique Gaylor (#514), 3. Bob Kirtland/David Cornachio (#707), and 4. John Silbersack/Nichols Silbersack (#007). Mimi Berry won the crew race. The long distance race will take place on Manhasset Bay, on Saturday, April 28, followed by a picnic at the Manhasset Bay Junior Yacht Club, where all skippers, crew, family and friends gather for an end-of-the-year get-together. Rain date is the next day.
This column periodically mentions outstanding individuals who promote sailing for young people who ordinarily would not be exposed to the excitement and challenges that our sport offers. Cam Lewis, skipper of the 110-foot catamaran Team Adventure, is one of the finest yacht racers in the world. But instead of pursuing his own agenda, he has announced a different kind of adventure that will offer to students around the world the chance to experience ocean sailing at its finest. Called the Route of Discovery, Cam announced last week the names of two schoolteachers who will join his crew for a transatlantic passage from Spain to the Bahamas. These two teachers are Janet Bradley, 41, from Hamble, Hampshire, England, and Susan Rieck, 50, from Grafton, Wisconsin. Bradley is an English and media studies teacher at Bridgemary Community School, in Gosport, Hampshire, and Rieck is a school library media specialist for the Milwaukee, Wisconsin Public Schools. Both teachers have extensive sailing experience. They will communicate daily from the big catamaran with students on both sides of the Atlantic, using the ship's satellite communications system to transmit written information and digital photographs via the internet. Betsy Alison, five-time Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year, is also joining the crew and will write a regular column for the team's website. "It is the mission of Team Adventure to motivate young people to learn and excel, to develop their awareness of the world around them," Lewis said. "With this voyage we hope to bring to life for kids the determination and the achievements of Columbus so many years ago." Skipper Lewis is not looking for any sailing records on this voyage, but he and his crew will be concentrating on Columbus' records. Using extensive documentation of Columbus' voyage, the crew and the guest teachers will emphasize similarities and startling changes that have occurred over the intervening 500 years. What a creative way to offer to students the perspective of ocean sailing that most of them will never experience. In addition to the obvious educational benefits of Route of Discovery, many of the children who experience this voyage just may catch the sailing bug and be attracted to sailing as a recreational sport or even on a racing level. For more information, go to the website: www.TeamAdventure.org.
Latest news from the America's Cup Jubilee: Last week Australia II, the Ben Lexcen designed boat with the winged-keel that beat Stars and Stripes to win the cup away from the United States in 1983, was reported to be looking for funding to participate in the jubilee. The latest news is that enough funding has become available so that Australia II will be representing her country at the spectacular sailing regatta in Cowes, England. According to Warren Jones, the Australia II Jubilee Challenge spokesman, a sponsor had agreed to put in "a substantial amount of money - enough to allow Australia II to compete at the Jubilee Regatta in Cowes, albeit on a tight budget." Competition in Cowes is getting better each day. This event is really turning out to be a spectacular regatta on many levels.
The inaugural Women's Match Race Invitational, an ISAF Grade 4 invitational regatta for the Bettina Bents Memorial Trophy, was held at Newport Harbor YC. This is the sole women's match racing competition on the west coast. The format was a single round robin series sailed in Santana 20s. The final four from the double round robin were: 1. Pease Glaser, this year's Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year, 2. Karen Johnson (11 points), 3. Dawn Riley, who was in Port Washington for the Knickerbockers Cup last October (10 points) and 4. Casey Hogan (7 points). Final results for the event next week.
Upcoming meetings: On Wednesday, April 25 at 7:30, the Cow Bay Racing Association will hold its annual race committee seminar at the Manhasset Bay Yacht Club in the lounge. This meeting is for all race committee members and skippers and crew who would like the latest information of racing rules that govern weekend sailing on Manhasset Bay. On Thursday, April 26, the Thirsty Thursday group will hold an organizational meeting at the Port Washington YC at 7:30 p.m. All who plan to race on Thursday evenings should attend this informative meeting. Please note that this is a date change due to major renovations at the club.