Twenty-three Sonar teams were greeted by stormy conditions for the first day of racing at the 2008 Sonar Atlantic Coast Championship co-hosted by the Manhasset Bay YC, Sonar Fleet #11 and the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, a new group to the Sonar Class. Launching, shore-side activities and the PRO, Past Commodore John Barry were provided by MBYC, while USMMA provided regatta support boats and crews as well as logistical support. Fleet # 11's Bill Simon was event chair.
Day one of racing was in winds of 10-18 knots from the SW with lots of current and thunderstorms moving through the area during the afternoon and evening. Five races were completed on relatively short windward-leeward courses that put importance on getting off to a good start, as passing lanes were hard to come by. At the end of the first day, Rob Wilber was at the top of the scoreboard with 13 pts, followed closely by current World Champion, Bill Lynn with 15 pts., Skip Shumway with 22 pts., Peter Galloway with 28 pts. and Erik Goethert with 35 pts. Races were won by Skip Shumway, Rob Wilber and Bill Lynn with two for the day.
Saturday evening at the Manhasset Bay YC, the competitors were treated to beer, cheese platters, BBQ burgers and dogs and clams and mussels. Numerous raffle prizes were awarded. The group then split into two groups to hear racing tips from the fleet's top sailors. Speaking to a group of skippers about sail trim, tuning and the day's tactics were Rick Doerr, Bill Lynn, Ralf Steitz, Peter Galloway and Dave Franzel - not a group of sailors to miss hearing how to make a Sonar go fast. Speaking and demonstrating to a group of crews about sail trim, boat and sail handling, including a very exciting dockside spinnaker hoist were Ched Proctor, Rick Dominique, Doug Sabin and Chris Hufstader.
Sunday's racing was under sunny skies in northwesterly winds from 10- 20 knots. Three races were completed and a few boats moved up or down in the scores in the shifty, puffy conditions. Bill Lynn won the first two, and Peter Galloway got his first bullet of the regatta in the last race. Back on shore, some protests needed to be arbitrated while the visiting boats were hauled and packed up for the road trips home. The keg was tapped and very nice photo frame trophies were awarded to the skipper and crews of the top four teams: Bill Lynn - 1st, Skip Shumway - 2nd, Rob Wilber - 3rd and Peter Galloway - 4th. Other awards presented were: Skip Shumway - "Start With a Bang Award" (winning the first race), Skip Shumway - Mobil/Exxon Spent the Most Gas Money to Attend Award and Jonathan Siener - "Rock Star Award" (flew in from Switzerland to race).
In addition, this was the first race in the inaugural Long Island Sound Sonar Series. The top 10 teams that compete in all three regattas on Long Island Sound will win keeper trophies of the Herb Schmidt, Jr. LISSS Award. The remaining events are: the LIS Championship Sept. 6-7 at Sachem's Head and North American Championship Oct. 11-12 at Seawanhaka Corinthian YC. This award was created to encourage Sonar sailors to support the Sonar Class events held on Long Island Sound annually.
Full Results: http://www.manhassetbayyc.org/files/SonarACC2008.pdf
According to PWYC Race Committee Chair Gene Brooks the Port Washington Yacht Club had a most successful Day Race on Sunday, June 1. The boats were sent off in two classes beginning at noon, with the spinnaker class off first, followe4d by the non-spinnaker racers. The course was a total of 14.8 nautical miles. The race was run from the yacht, Fidelity, graciously provided by Don and Janet Wefer. Dave Debaun served as the PRO for the event. At the conclusion of racing, the club provided a great barbecue that was enjoyed by all participants, their families and friends.
Top Boats in Division I (spinnaker) 1. Happy Daze II (Egan), 2. Out of Reach III (Nees) and 3. EnGarde (Cannan). Division II (non-spinnaker): 1. Vision (Epstein), 2. Soundwave (Flamm), and 3. Alviento (Sklarew).
North Shore YC held their day race on Saturday, May 31 and the results will be reported next week.
In sailing news outside of our bay, the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association announced their year-end awards, where 53 skippers and crews were recognized for achieving either All-American or Honorable Mention status. It is very exciting that a Long Island woman was among those receiving a prestigious award. Kaitlin Storck, '08 Tufts University, won the Quantum Women's Sailor of the Year. Congratulation to Kaitlin and her family, a well-known sailing family from Huntington. Other awards included: Chris Behm '08, Georgetown, earning the Everett B. Morris Trophy (Sailor of the Year); Paul Kleinschrodt '08, University of South Alabama, honored with the Robert H. Hobbs Trophy (Sportsman of the Year); and Boston College for the Leonard M. Fowle Trophy (Team of the Year). The school with the most recognized sailors was St. Mary's College with nine honorees. For more information, please see this link: http://www.collegesailing.org/news/2008allamerica.asp
NBC Nightly News has posted an amazing piece on American Paralympic class SKUD 18 skipper Nick Scandone and his battle with ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease). Nick shows true heart and determination in the face of a terminal challenge, with the question varying between his ability to win an Olympic medal, and whether he will live long enough to try. Watch this two-minute video: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3032619/#24987042.
Next week's column will post the Thirsty Thursday scores and other local sailing news.