A look at Chessie Racing . . .

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Flag: USA

Sail number: USA60

Designer: Bruce Farr

Builder: Goetz Custom Boats

Shore manager: Bryan Fishback

Launch: April 1997

Skipper: George Collins

Collins, 57, a co-skipper on Chessie, created the syndicate more than a year ago and serves as the shore and race crew's all-around leader.

A native of West Haven, Conn., Collins started sailing on Long Island Sound shortly after high school. In 1990, he completed his first offshore competition, the Annapolis to Bermuda race. Since then, he has participated in several ocean races along the East Coast - including Key West Race Week and S.O.R.C. - with his slew of race boats called Moxie.

Collins stepped down as head of the Baltimore mutual fund company T. Rowe Price in April, after having served as chief executive officer for 13 years. He lives in Gibson Island, and has three children and five grandchildren.

Crew:

* James Allsopp. Allsopp, 53, will be a guest helmsman and tactician on Chessie after sailing competitively for more than 20 years.

A sail-design expert with North Sails, Allsopp managed the sail-design programs for the 1993-94 Whitbread campaign of Galicia '93 Pescanova and four America's Cup boats. He has competed in the four America's Cup trials.

A native of Huntington, N.Y., he lives in Annapolis.

* Mark Fischer. Fischer, 39, has overseen the administration of the Chessie syndicate and now will serve as one of its co-skippers.

Fischer has been competing in Chesapeake Bay races for the past 22 years. He was an alternate for America3, the team that won the 1992 America's Cup. He competed in the 1992 Olympic trials in the Soling Class and has raced on Grand Prix circuits.

For the past decade, he has served as chief executive of the Blakeslee Group, an advertising and marketing agency in Baltimore. He lives in Baltimore with his wife and two daughters.

* Richard Deppe. Deppe, 33, will work the bow on Chessie in his second try at a Whitbread victory.

In the 1993-94 Whitbread, Deppe raced on Fortuna, which retired after losing both masts 26 hours into the race. Since then, Deppe has run Collins' Moxie sailing team in Key West races, S.O.R.C. and more.

Deppe lives in Annapolis with his wife, Anastasia, and their son. He's originally from West Yorkshire, England.

* Gregory Gendell. Gendell, 27, is a bowman on Chessie and the youngest crew member, making his first Whitbread effort.

Gendell has worked as a sailmaker for the past eight years. He has competed for U.S. teams in the Admiral's Cup in 1995 and 1997, placing second and first in those years, respectively.

Sailing on the Magothy River since he was a child, he continues to live in Annapolis, now with his wife, Pam.

* Tony Harman. Harman, 32, may be called from his native Australia to pitch in on the Chessie crew as a trimmer.

Harman, a major in the Australian army, was allowed to try out because his commanders believed the Whitbread's treacherous conditions would help build character. If the team needs a replacement trimmer or all-purpose sailor, Harman is first on the roster.

In Annapolis, Harman has sailed as Moxie crew for Collins.

Harman, who grew up on the south coast of Australia, moved from Sydney to Annapolis, where he lives with his wife and two children.

* Jerry Kirby. Kirby, 41, is Chessie's bowman and crew boss. He is a seasoned racer.

Kirby has sailed in four America's Cup campaigns, starting as a 21-year-old boat boy on Intrepid and culminating in 1992 aboard the winner America3. He also coached the America3 women's team in the 1995 America's Cup. Other sailing highlights include 14 Maxi Boat World Championships, 12 S.O.R.C.'s, six Kenwood Cups and eight Big Boat Series.

Kirby, who owns a construction business, lives with his wife, Kim, and their two sons in Newport, R.I.

* Antonio Piris. Piris, 33, will work as a trimmer and driver on Chessie after placing third in the last race for the Whitbread 60 class.

Piris, known as "Talpi," is a boat builder who comes to the Chessie campaign after helping oversee boat construction for Team EF, a Swedish competitor in this year's Whitbread. Piris sailed in the 1993-94 race as watch leader on Galicia '93 Pescanova.

Piris is a native of Santander, Spain.

* Dave Scott. Scott, 38, is a Chessie watch captain and a sail expert making his first go at an around-the-world race.

Through his work as a sailmaker, Scott furthered a professional sailing career by working for his clients in several offshore races, including S.O.R.C.'s, Key West Race Weeks, Admiral's Cups and Commodore Cups.

Scott, originally from Canterbury, England, sailed for Ohio Wesleyan College after moving to the United States at age 12. Until recently, he lived in Chester, Md., with his wife, Sally, and their son.

* Grant Spanhake. Spanhake, 38, is a veteran of two Whitbreads and a watch captain on Chessie.

Spanhake, known as "Fuzz," competed on Lion New Zealand in the 1985-86 Whitbread and Fisher & Paykel in the next race in 1989-90. He has also participated in three America's Cups.

Born in Auckland, New Zealand, Spanhake lives in Annapolis - where he often consults for North Sails' Performance Resource Group - with his wife, Laura.

* Jonathan Swain. Swain, 30, a trimmer and driver on Chessie, is a former triathlete who will take his first shot at an around-the-world this year.

Swain, known as "Jono," was awarded several national achievement awards in South Africa, and represented that country in four world championships. He has competed in two Mauritius to Durban Races, two Corum Cups, three Kenwood Cups and five Key West Race Weeks.

Born in Durban, South Africa, Swain lives in Annapolis with his wife, Cary.

* Paul Van Dyke. Van Dyke, 36, left a career as a submarine builder many years ago to pursue professional racing.

Nicknamed "Whirly" - he was in near-constant motion as a kid - Van Dyke has raced in four trans-Atlantics as well as the Admiral's Cup, six Bermuda races and four S.O.R.C.'s. Van Dyke was set to round the world in the 1993-94 Whitbread when his boat, Fortuna, had to quit the race after two broken masts. On Chessie, he will work as a trimmer and driver.

Van Dyke lives in Groton, Conn., where he once worked for the submarine manufacturer Electric Boat. He and his wife, Margaret, have three children.

* Juan Vila. Vila, 35, will forecast wind and weather changes as the navigator for Chessie. It is his third try at a Whitbread trophy.

Vila was the navigator for Fortuna Extra Lights in 1989-90 and Galicia '93 Pescanova in 1993-94. He also raced in the last two America's Cups. He will spend most of this Whitbread below deck, tucked into a navigation station.

L Vila and his girlfriend, Terela, are parents of a baby girl.

* Stuart Wilson. Wilson, 30, brings additional skills as a sailmaker to Chessie, where he will drive and trim in his second attempt at an around-the-world passage.

Wilson tried to sail in the last Whitbread, but his boat, Fortuna, broke down. He also has worked as a sailmaker for two America's Cup campaigns.

Wilson grew up in the Bay of Islands area of New Zealand, and now lives in Milford, Conn.

. . and the rest of the field

Merit Cup

Flag: Monaco

Sail number: MON7000

Designer: Bruce Farr

Builder: Marten Marine, Auckland

Shore manager: Chris Cooney

Launch: March 1997

Skipper: Grant Dalton

Crew: Guido Maisto, co-skipper; Mike Quilter, navigator; Paolo Bassani; Ramond Davies; Dirk De Ridder; Brad Jackson; Jeremy Lomas; Mike Sanderson; Kevin Shoebridge; Ian Stewart.

BrunelSunergy

Flag: Netherlands

Sail number: NED11

Designer: Judel/Vrolijk

Builder: Holland Composites

Shore manager: Step Van't Zand

Launch: March 1997

Skipper: Hans Bouscholte

Crew: Arend van Bergeijk; Ivan Bunner; Arjen van Gent; Hans Horrevoets; Mark Van Hulssen; Michael Joubert; Simon Keljzer; Piet van Nieuwenhuyzen; Colin Richardson; Gerard Rogiveu; Peter Tans; Erik van Vouren.

Kvaerner Innovation

Flag: Norway

Sail number: NOR2

Designer: Bruce Farr

Builder: Kvaerner Mandal

Shore manager: Bjorge Grimholt

Launch: May 1997

Skipper: Knut Frostad

Crew: Marcel van Triest, navigator; Jim Close; Espen Guttormsen; Alastair Pratt; Jeff Scott; Sveinung Torgersen; Jacques Vincent; Ian Walker; Nick Willetts.

Swedish Match

Flag: Sweden

Sail number: SWE2000

Designer: Bruce Farr

Builder: Cookson's

Shore manager: Scott McAllister

Launch: March 1997

Skipper: Gunnar Krantz

Crew: Erle Williams, co-skipper; Roger Nilson, navigator; Rodney Ardern; Oskar Karlsson; Tim Kroger; Mikael Lund; Tony Mutter; David Rolfe; Craig Satterthwaite; Magnus Woxen.

EF Education

Flag: Sweden

Sail number: SWE1

Designer: Bruce Farr

Builder: Richard Gillies and Tim Smythe

Shore manager: Richard Brisius

Launch: May 1997

Skipper: Christine Gillou

Crew: Lynnath Beckley, navigator; Marleen Cleyndert; Anna Drougge; Keryn McMaster; Leah Newbold; Kiny Parade; Katherine Pettibone; Bridget Suckling.

EF Language

Flag: Sweden

Sail number: SWE2

Designer: Bruce Farr

Builder: Richard Gillies and Tim Smythe

Shore manager: Richard Brisius

Launch: May 1997

Skipper: Paul Cayard

Crew: Nick White, navigator; Josh Belsky; Curtis Blewett; Mark Christensen; Justin Clougher; Steve Erickson; Lorenzo Mazza; Klas Nylof; Magnus Olsson; Rick Tomlinson; Kimo Worthington.

Silk Cut

Flag: United Kingdom

Sail number: GBR1

Designer: Bruce Farr

Builder: McConaghy Boats, Sydney

Shore manager: Howard Gibbons

Launch: June 1997

Skipper: Lawrie Smith

Crew: Steven Hayles, navigator; Stuart Bannatyne; Jason Carrington; Jan Dekker; Jeremy Fanstone; Neil Graham; Gordon Maguire; Neal McDonald; Craig Nutter; Tim Powell; Adrian Stead.

Toshiba

Flag: USA

Sail number: USA1

Designer: Bruce Farr

Builder: New England Boatworks

Shore manager: Mick Harvey

Launch: April 1997

Co-skippers: Dennis Conner and Chris Dickson

Crew: Andrew Cape, navigator; David Allen; David Blanchfield; Sean Clarkson; Steve Cotton; Kelvin Harrap; Mick Harvey; Ross MacDonald; Nick Maloney; Alan Smith; Paul Standbridge.

America's Challenge

Flag: USA

Sail number: USA11

Designer: Alan Andrews

Builder: Eric Goetz

Launch: May 1997

Co-Skippers: Neil Barth and Ross Field

Crew: Richard Bouzaid; Tom Faire; Campbell Field; Matt Humphries; Daniel Fong; Jared Henderson.

Pub Date: 9/21/97

Copyright © 2021, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad
46°