GMC Yukon Yachting Key West
Race Week 2000
January 17 - 21, 2000
Dave Gendell and Brian Trotta
was the best day the fleet has seen down here in a few years,” exclaimed an
enthusiastic Nelson Stephenson, skipper of the Mumm 30 Bold 2. The Stamford, Conn., sailor
had just returned to Key West Bight following a classic January romp in a steady
14- to18-knot westerly breeze.
was not exaggerating and the bulk of the fleet agreed. It was a charmed day and the warm breeze propelled the fleet to two
races on each of three circles. A solid breeze forecast for today virtually
guarantees that the event organizers’ stated goal of an eight race series will
majority of the Mumm 30s have made several turns on the circuit, so the fleet
manages well in the breezier conditions. Surprisingly few wipe-outs, relatively
clean mark roundings, and amazingly tight finishes characterized the racing. In
Thursday’s first race, the Allardice/Collins team aboard USA-48 edged Phil Garland’s Trouble
by seven seconds for morning honors. Jean Pierre Dick and the French-flagged Ville
de Saint Raphael was four seconds behind Trouble
seemed that the sailing and weather stars were aligned perfectly and the second
Mumm 30 race of the day will go down in class lore as one of the classics.
Division III PRO Ken Legler, who has run thousands of starts in his stellar race
management career, was impressed with the sight of 26 Mumm 30s queuing up
aggressively on the starting line under sunny sub-tropical skies and on the
nearly impossibly blue-green waters off the Florida Keys. “It was
a mental photograph that I will not soon forget,” he said.
ultimate victor in the contest was Lindsay Clarkson’s New Jersey-based Blurrr
crew who worked hard to earn a scant seven-second victory over the Leporti’s Kismet.
the time the spray had dried, Ville de
Saint Raphael’s Thursday 3-4 was enough to push the team into the overall
top spot, five points ahead of Garland and crew. Despite an 11-15 yesterday, Turbo
Duck sits in third and maintains a 16-point cushion over fourth place Blurrr.
is the only crew to win multiple races in the class as five other Mumm teams
have collected big trophies for individual races.
a 1-2 finish Thursday Brian Porter continued his Full Throttle quest for the Melges 24 championship and opened up a
little breathing room over Harry Melges’ Zenda
Express. Porter leads Melges by six points going into today’s decisive
race. But should both boats falter, Argyle Campbell’s Rock N’ Roll is in third place after sailing a series that has
seen him finish out of the top eight only once, that an eleventh in Tuesday’s
In the PHRF-1 class, Ennio Staffini’s Farr 40, Uarshek thrived in the solid Thursday breeze. “We like to sail in the stronger breezes. The crew has a lot more fun and the boat needs it to get rolling,” explains tactician Drew Donald. “Monday was breezy and it went well,” he continues, referring to a day that saw the team post a 2-2. “In the light stuff Tuesday and Wednesday, it wasn’t so nice and we felt lucky to escape from those days with a 3-7-5. Today, it was back in the breeze and we’re feeling pretty good going into Friday.” Fatal Attraction picked up two points on class leader Chessie by posting a 2-2 yesterday.
Through the first three days of the regatta, the bulk of the IMS class had suffered as the event’s two CM-60s proved stingy with the bullets. Highland Fling had collected three while Rima had the others. That all changed yesterday as George David’s N/M 50 Idler won the morning race and Bache Renshaw’s N/M 49 Virago stepped into the winner’s circle in the afternoon. But Highland Fling’s 2-6 clinched first in class. Rima’s 5-4 leaves her tied for second with Virago.
Yesterday saw a couple of new faces atop the Farr 40 class results but a familiar theme has developed. Six different boats have won individual races, and Shadow and Orion were the latest to take the podium. But George Andreadis, Robbie Haines, and the crew of Atalanti XI have sailed in the top ten throughout the week and carry a 16-point lead into today’s race. “The left has been favored all week and Atalanti has a knack for working the left, coming in on the port layline and somehow finding a clean hole,” said one competitor.
After a raucous session on the water, the One Design 35 class suffered through an afternoon of contentious protests. One thing is for certain -- the 21-boat class has a number of teams capable of winning the whole thing. A different boat has won each race and Garth Dennis’ Smiling Bulldog is the only team without a double-digit finish. Robert Hughes’s Heartbreaker leads after four days of racing.
The king of yesterday’s 1D35 battle was Hughes and his crew, who posted a 3-1 in the class. This strong performance was enough to launch the Michigan-based crew to overall Boat of the Day honors on Yachting Magazine Day.
a bullet in Thursday’s first race, the crew of the new Melges 32 Ceres
Group slowed way down at the start of the second race in PHRF 2 when they
tangled with the anchor line on the committee boat. ``They had the scope on the
anchor way out. That line was almost halfway across the bay,’’ said helmsman
Buddy Melges. After exonerating themselves with a 360-degree turn, Ceres
Group wound up eighth for the race.
2 PRO Wayne Bretch said the conditions on his circle were perfect for some of
the lighter boats because the strong breezes and four-foot seas made for perfect
of the seven Division 2 classes will be decided by today’s final contest. In
the J/29 class, a single point separates
Tomahawk and Titillation, who
swapped first- and second- place finishes Thursday. And with everyone else in
the class out of contention for first and second overall, expect those two boats
to engage in a fierce match race today.
Liquor Box, and Think Blue
will also be keeping close tabs on each other in PHRF 7. Bruce Gardner’s First
Class 10 is in the catbird seat with 19 points after a 4-2 finish Thursday,
while the two Tartan 10s have 23 and 26 points respectively. The class also
provided some of the closest racing of the day with the top three boats in
Thursday’s second race finishing within 16 seconds of each other on corrected
Violet just needs to
complete the course today to wrap up the championship in PHRF 5 after scoring a
1-1 Thursday. Dave Prucnal said his crew trailed rival Nemesis for most of the first race. With only 300 yards to the
finish, they split gybes, and then gybed back with only 100 yards to go. The
move paid off and Ultra Violet escaped
with a five-second win.
continued to roll through PHRF 4. With no finish worse than third, Tom
Ballard’s SR 33 holds a seven-point margin over Frigate.
Bretch singled out Ballard’s crew as one of the best on the circle. ``Their
crew work was amazing, at one rounding, they came in on port, tacked, and had
the chute up, all within one boatlength of the mark. And, they were all still
hiking hard at the end of the second race.’’
continues to run the table in PHRF 6 and only has to start today to guarantee a
tie for first. And the S2 7.9 Rugger
is only competing to see if they can keep their perfect record alive, as they
locked up PHRF 8 on Thursday.
the J/105 class, Rick Wright’s Wonder
Wagon took the lead at the start of the first race and never looked back. Wagon
was closely tailed by Thomas Coates’ Masquerade and the Watts/Thayer team
aboard Juxtapose who both enjoyed their first turn in the top three this
second race featured a resurgence of Damian Emory’s Eclipse. After a tight start that left Eclipse pinned between boats, Emory was able to break free on the
opening leg, pass Wonder Wagon and
hold off attacks from Wagon and Phantom.
earning a 5-2 Thursday, Andrew Skibo and his crew aboard Plum Crazy hold first place overall. Eight points behind, Wonder
Wagon has a three point cushion over Phantom.
Lutz and his Syzygy crew continued to
dominate the J/80 class with another pair of bullets. Vicky Jo Neiner and her
crew of the New Jersey-based Thrown
Together showed their talent for heavy-air sailing by posting a 4-3, their
best finishes for the series. But even these top finishes will not help her
catch Martin Kald’s Monster Lady, or
David Balfour’s Kicks who enter
today in second and third place.
Monday’s spectacular tangle with Idler,
the crew of Wairere say they have some
newfound respect on the racecourse. ``Everybody seems to give us a wide berth
now,’’ said Tim Woodhouse. Rigging on the two boats got tangled and Idler
pulled Wairere so far up on her stern that several people slid overboard.
This afternoon, Idler will receive an
“average finish for the week” score in the Race 2 slot because of her
team’s decision to retire after the collision.
For more information
Goss: (203) 453-2731, Fax (203) 453-3026, CynthiaGoss@compuserve.com
Craig: (781) 639-9545, Fax (781) 639-9171,
Key West Media Center Page