It's been a very busy period out on the water as the 1995 season has been closing with a number of major events over the past three weeks.
Two weeks ago, for example, Severn Sailing Association and Eastport Yacht Club put on the annual J/24 East Coast Championship for 64 teams from the length of the Eastern Seaboard and beyond, at the same time the Chesapeake Station of the Storm Trysail Club was producing a regatta for Mumm 36s and Mumm 30s.
The day both of these three-day regattas started, Oct. 27, was the day the 58-boat Star North American Championships came to a close in Galesville at West River Sailing Club, which put together a first-rate regatta for one of the most competitive fleets of world-class sailors ever to meet on the waters of the Chesapeake for six days of racing in conditions ranging from light and fluky to heavy.
Any one of five contenders still could have won the regatta going into the last race of the series while others, including America's Cup helmsmen Paul Cayard and Rod Davis and reigning Star World Champ Mark Reynolds already had sailed themselves out of contention.
Victory went to Canadian Ross MacDonald and his crew, Pat Dion, who took the regatta by a single point over the German team of Frank Butzmann and Kai Falkenthal, leaving John Kostecki and Tom Olsen as the top U.S. team, in third overall. Top local finisher was regatta organizer Steve Kling of Annapolis, with his crew Ed Seamans, 32nd overall.
In Annapolis, heavy winds all three days of the weekend brought a lot of excitement to the Mumm and J/24 courses, as well as the Saturday-Sunday Annapolis Yacht Club Skipper Regatta for J/35s and J/30s.
Skill in boat handling in the big waves and gusty breezes was the key to success, and Harwood native Terry Hutchinson, now living in Newport, R.I., took the top slot in the J/24s, followed by other New England sailmakers, while the top local finisher was Tony Parker and his Bangor Packet team, coming in sixth overall, just ahead of Annapolitan Chris Larson, the reigning J/22 champ.
On the Mumm course, where the '36 sailors were wrapping up their 1995 U.S. circuit and the '30s were making their one-design racing debut, the brisk air made things very exciting through all three days. George Collins of Gibson Island, owner of a Mumm 36 named Moxie, chartered a '30 for the regatta, while former Annapolitan Jim Brady put together a team to sail the '36. Both Moxies won convincingly.
Other local notables were meeting on the water that weekend in the AYC Skipper series, with overall victory in the hotly contested J/35 class going to Kevin McNeil and his Frequent Flyer team.
Severn Sailing Assn./Eastport Yacht Club
J/24 East Coast Championship
Oct. 27-29; 64 starters, 6 races
1. Mookie, Terry Hutchinson, 11.25 (1-1-4-2-3-1); 2. Blind Squirrel, Brad Read, 16 (2-3-2-3-2-4); 3. American Garage, Tim McKegney, 26 (3-4-3-4-6-6); 4. Fawn Liebowicz, Al Hobart, 53 (12- 8-11-10-4-8); 5. Downtown, John Reynolds, 61 (6-9-12-14-11-9).
Annapolis Yacht Club
J/35 (9 entries): 1. Frequent Flyer, Kevin McNeil, 9.5 (1-3- 4-1); 2. Wild Thang, Chambers/Berge, 15.75 (5-5-1-5); 3. J-Bird, Yeigh/Harrison, 16 (7-4-2-3).
J/30 (9 entries): 1. Hot Rod, John Dallam, 4.25 (1-2-1-1); 2. Vivacious, Bill & Terri Munz, 8.75 (2-1-3-3); 3. Big Kahuna, Larry Christy, 24 (DNC-DNC-2-3).
West River Sailing Club
1995 Star North American Championship
Oct. 22-27; 58 starters, 6 races, 1 throwout
1. Ross Macdonald/Pat Dion, Canada, 31 (7-4-14-1--5); 2. Frank Butzmann/Kai Falkenthal, Germany, 32 (5-13-2--4-8); 3. John Kostecki/Tom Olsen, USA, 35 (1-16-4-7--7); 4. Ben Mitchell/Bill Stump, USA, 43 (8-1-[DNF]-8-5-21); 5. Mark Reynolds/Magnus Liljedahl, USA, 45 (9-17-6--10-3); 6. Paul Cayard/George Iverson, USA, 48 (16-20-1-10-[PMS]-1); 7. Jack Slattery/Ron Sandstrom, USA, 48 (11-3-15--1-18); 8. Alexander Hagen/Aukracher Thomas, Germany, 51 (24-2-19- -2-4); 9. Bill Buchan/Bill Bennett, USA, 54 (3-8-9-24--10); 10. Vince Brun/Paul Larken, USA, 68 (-7-28-5-113-15).
Masters Class: 1. Bill Buchan/Bill Bennett, USA; 2. John Sherwood III/Robert Shapiro, USA; 3. Barton Beek/Joel Kew, USA; 4. Guy Gurney/[crew n/a], USA; 5. Durward Knowles/Chris Rogers, USA; 6. John Vanderhoff/Tim McAteer, USA.
Storm Trysail Club
Mumm Halloween One-design Regatta
Mumm 36 (11 starters): 1. Moxie, Jim Brady, 11.5 (1-1-1-1-3- 1-1-4); 2. Zamboni, Doug Taylor, 30.75 (2-12-3-3-4-2-4-1); 3. Battlewagon, John Hanna, 32 (5-3-5-4-2-3-7-3); 4. Rhody Express, Peter Vessella, 34 (3-2-7-2-5-5-2-8); 5. Radical Departure, Richard Marki, 47.75 (11-5-2-11-1-7-5-6).
Mumm 30 (6 starters): 1. Moxie, George Collins, 9.75 (1-2-1-2-1-2-1-1); 2. Canned Heat, Charlie Lawrence, 17.75 (3-3-2-1-2-1- 3-3); 3. Instigator, Bill Lockwood, 18.75 (2-1-3-3-3-3-2-2).
Baltimore City Yacht Association
Harbor Cup 1995
Oct. 21, 23.1 NM
PHRF A-0 (7 starters): 1. Dragon Fly, Jeffrey Klein, 3:29:29 c.t.; 2. Destination, Ken Klotz, 3:35:28 c.t.; 3. Dancer, Bill Steitz, 3:38:21 PHRF A-1 (7 starters): 1. Corybantic, John Pica, 3:34:46 c.t.; 2. Zephyr 2, D&B; Shaeffer, 3:35:28 c.t.; 3. a.k.a. Diamond, Glenn/Williams, 3:37:58 c.t.
PHRF A-2 (13 starters): 1. Swift, Mid. 1/c Rob Daniels, 3:30:52 c.t.; 2. Lively, Mid. 1/c Wes McCall, 3:31:21 c.t.; 3. Flirt, Mid. 1/c Dex Hoag, 3:32:13 c.t.
PHRF B (11 starters): 1. Stringer, George Good, 3:39:37 c.t.; 2. Airwaves, Dave Weimer, 3:43:12 c.t.; 3. Fast Company, Barry Moss, 3:43:51 c.t.
PHRF C (10 starters): 1. Azure, Dave Prucnal, 3:50:32 c.t.; 2. Sure Cure, Craig Decker, 3:53:06 c.t.; 3. Knotbobs, Dan Miller, 3:56:06 c.t.
PHRF D (2 starters): 1. Chapter II, Craig Doyle, 4:17:15 c.t.
PHRF Nonspinnaker (10 starters): 1. Spice, Ray Taylor, 4:05:42 c.t.; 2. Catawampus, Virgil Hobbs, 4:13:06 c.t.; 3. Kinky Turtle, Hollowell, 4:16:07 c.t.
J/30 (3 starters): 1. Better Mousetrap, Bob Putnam.
Triton (3 starters): 1. Sandpiper, Chris Gordon; 2. Jubilant, Jim Schwartz.
Rock Creek Yachting Association
Harbor Fall Back
Oct. 22, 12.75 NM
PHRF A (18 starters, protests pending): 1. Wild Thang, Chambers/Berge, 1:55:43 c.t.; 2. Dancer, Steitz, 2:07:11 c.t.; 3. Morning Star, Mid. 1/c Nick Good, 2:07:16 c.t.
PHRF B (2 starters): 1. Elusive, John Clark, 2:33:13 c.t.
PHRF Nonspinnaker (6 starters): 1. Dragon Fly, Klein, 2:37:03 c.t.; 2. Undecided, Rich Harrity, 2:56:13 c.t.; 3. Phat, Dick Barton, 3:02:28 c.t.
Triton (3 starters): 1. Sea Deuce, Eleanor Holmes; 2. Sandpiper, Gordon.
It's time for me to say goodbye as your sailing correspondent. After more than six years on this job, other demands on my time, especially because my husband and I and a partner started the new regional sailing magazine Wind in September, are becoming too pressing to allow me to continue.
It's been fun, and I'll miss it.
Have a happy and safe winter, and if you're looking for me, try the Internet at http://www.usboat.com/pub/wind/home.html.