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The Vineyard Race is a classic American yachting event hosted by the Stamford YC. It is a qualifier for NORT, De Coursey Fales, Irving Pratt, Windigo, Kings Point and Allegra Knapp Mertz Memorial Trophies. The race covers a 239-mile course stretching from Shippan Point, through Plum Gut, past Block Island, and on to the light tower at the entrance to Buzzard's Bay. The return trip takes competitors past Block Island on starboard en route to the finish in Stamford Harbor. The Vineyard Race, begun in 1932, has attracted the finest sailors and fastest boats for nearly 70 years. Two such successful sailors, one from our bay and one who grew up here, Steve Moore and Rich du Moulin, have been asked by Stamford YC to give a talk about their Vineyard Race experiences as a preliminary to the actual event. These two expert sailors, along with additional crew, will then join a stellar group of experienced sailors over Labor Day weekend on the starting line off the Stamford, CT shore.

The fifth race of the CBCA Fall Series was on Thursday, August 15. Results for Division 1 (Course BTC, 7.71 nm): 1. #39516, Avalanche, 2. #51676, Promise Kept, and 3. #128, Zero Gravity. Division II (Course BC, 5.95 nm): 1. #216, Happy Daze, 2. #466, Irish Blessing, and 3. #52, Anticipation. Division III (Course BC, 5.95 nm): 1. #18, Tootsie, 2. #152, Serenity, and 3. #63, Reality. Division IV (Course BC, 5.95 nm): 1. #183, Quaker II. Catamaran Division: 1. #248, Renegade.

All the junior sailing programs on Manhasset Bay, which provided about 250 young sailors an opportunity to learn to sail or hone their skills, have concluded their activities for the summer months. Their awards and achievements will be posted next week, as will the results of bay racing over the weekend of August 17-18, which were unavailable at press time.

If organizers succeed, more than 3,000 Memorial Flags, each personalized with the name of a person lost on 9/11, will be flown in New York Harbor during Sail for America on Saturday, September 14, (www.sailforamerica.com ). "One purpose of Sail for America is to remember the people who were lost," says Michael Fortenbaugh, chairman of the Organizing Committee. "As part of our mission to remember," continues Mr. Fortenbaugh, "we hope to fly a personalized Memorial Flag to honor every person lost on 9/11. First, these flags will be flown in the harbor during Sail for America. Then, they will be given to the families. It is our hope that in 20 or 50 years, a child will open a box in an attic and pull out the flag and remember his or her connection to this singular event in our nation's history." Each Memorial Flag will measure 2 x 3 feet. They will be triangular pennants with a white background and a red and blue border. Each Memorial Flag will be printed with the name of one of the people lost on 9/11. More than 3,000 flags will be produced and flown in New York Harbor during Sail for America.

The idea for the Memorial Flags comes from Catherine DeRubbio who is married to a chief in the New York Fire Department. Her husband survived 9/11 but he lost his brother, Ms. DeRubbio's brother-in-law. When Ms. DeRubbio found out about Sail for America through the iInternet, she sent the following e-mail to Mr. Fortenbaugh: "Dear Mr. Fortenbaugh, I am interested in having banners, flags or pennants in remembrance of the people killed at the WTC. My brother-in-law David was one of the firefighters and we also lost a lot of friends." Ms. DeRubbio's idea was presented to the full Organizing Committee of Sail for America, and Northeast Flags of Mountainside, NJ will manufacture them, no small feat considering the limited time frame and sheer number of flags. Each flag will cost $12 and the Organizing Committee of Sail for America is raising the money to pay for the Memorial Flags. "Twelve dollars is an incredible value for a personalized flag but when you multiply that by 3,000, we are talking about a significant amount," says Mr. Fortenbaugh. The Organizing Committee is reaching out to individuals, and corporations, inviting them to sponsor one or more flags. The Sail for America website has information about the flags and a sponsor form (www.sailforamerica.com/memorial_flag.htm). People are excited about the flags, as evidenced by the many e-mails and telephone calls of support and encouragement. In the first two days since this program was launched on the website, more than 350 flags have been sponsored.

Memorial Flags will be delivered to the Sail for America headquarters at the Ritz-Carlton New York, Battery Park on Thursday, September 12. Boaters who are participating in Sail for America and who wish to fly a specific flag in memory of a family members or friend, will be able to pick up the flags on that day. The other flags will be distributed to all sailboats participating in Sail for America. "If there are not enough boats to fly every flag, some of the larger boats have already volunteered to fly additional flags. "Larger boats can fly 2, 5 or 10 flags," says Mr. Fortenbaugh. "Whatever it takes, we will make sure that every single Memorial Flag flies over New York Harbor." After the day of sailing, boat owners will return the flags to the Organizing Committee. The committee will then distribute the flags to the families. "The distribution of the Memorial Flags after Sail for America will take a month or two," says Mr. Fortenbaugh. "We will first allow families to pick up flags in person. For those who cannot come to the city, we will mail their flags. Some boaters have also requested permission to fly a specific flag and then deliver it personally to the family."

The main day of Sail for America will be Saturday, September 14, when sailors from around the country are bringing their boats to New York Harbor. Thousands of boats are expected to participate. Then on Sunday, September 15, Around Alone, the single-handed round-the-world race, will start from off Ground Zero as the final act of Sail for America and the week of 9/11 commemorative events. The start is scheduled for 12 noon. This will be the first round-the-world race ever to start from New York City. (www.aroundalone.com)


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