Best Friends Weatherly And Charity Cruise To Victory
By DOUG JONES
With a SSW wind gusting to 18 knots, the Quissett Yacht Club Race Committee of Molly Jones, Martha Adams, Ed Jackson, and Doug Jones opted to hold the third race of the Wednesdsay H Class July series under the lee of Penzance Point. They moved the starting line upwind of the traditional starting position, dropped a gybe mark, and posted a Gold Cup course using mark “A” as the windward mark. Despite the gusty wind, the fleet started aggressively with many boats fighting for the best position. Mike Fenlon and Sebastian Laye in Buttercup found themselves on the race course side at the start and were forced to re-start. Meanwhile, very close sailing was occurring at the pin and a couple of protest flags were quickly hoisted; as a result Tom and Kristan First in Olivia ultimately withdrew from the race.
Chuck First and Sue Conlin in Allie Rose tested the off shore route but found the heavier seas created slower sailing conditions. Weatherly Dorris and childhood best friend Charity Gray aboard Found It found some clear air and outpointed the rest of the fleet to grab a comfortable lead by the first windward mark with Mike and Ben Garfield in Phoenix and Randy Evans in Penguin in close pursuit. On the two short reaches, all skippers opted to keep their spinnakers turtled in their bags, and there was little change in position.
On the final upwind leg, Buttercup moved her way through the fleet and took over third place while Found It and Phoenix held onto first and second respectively. While there were some attempts to fly spinnakers during the run to the finish, most boats ultimately decided that they were already sailing at hull speed and opted not to test their rigging. Penguin in third place continued to demonstrate the competitiveness of sailing singlehanded. With one race left in the series, Phoenix is in a strong position with a first and two seconds, but Found It could win the series with another first.
|1||Found It||Weatherly Dorris and Charity Gray||36:55|
|2||Phoenix||Mike and Ben Garfield||37:09|
|4||Buttercup||Mike Fenlon and Sebastian Laye||38:13|
|5||Dory Too||Nina Hocker and Steve Chalmers||38:21|
|6||Allie Rose||Chuck First and Sue Conlin||38:26|
|7||Olivia||Tom and Kristan First||WD|