Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Gorgeous Start To Hot Rum Series

San Diego YC Hot Rum series start off Point Loma
(San Diego, CA)- According to Scuttlebutt, “the conditions couldn’t have been better. Sunny and warm. Enough wind to keep boats moving, yet allow crews to confidently handle them. A couple reach legs out the harbor, with a two tack upwind beat returning the fleet to the finish.

The pursuit format mellows the vibe. Outcome almost doesn’t matter. You are always surrounded by boats, types of which you don’t normally see. The 12nm course is interesting. Tactics are simple. Pass the boats that started ahead, and hold off the boats that started behind. Most times the weather decides if it is your day.

Afterwards, a huge crowd gathers at San Diego Yacht Club. Maybe because everyone felt good about their effort. The entry fee at one time was rum, with a batch of hot buttered rum drinks dispersed to those of age. Progress ruined that tradition, but sailors are a resourceful bunch, so not all can be squashed.

On this day, with the big hitters on the race course, it was the fiberglass classics that dominated the fleet of 135 boats. The overall standings was led by a Ranger 33, a Catalina 30, two Ericson 35-2s, and a J/24. When boats from the 70s can beat the hot shots, it is a good day for the sport.”  Thanks for that perspective from Craig Leweck at Scuttlebutt News.

How did things go for the dozens of J/Teams on the “fun track” out of the harbor, around two buoys off Pt Loma and back into the finish just off Shelter Island?  Pretty well for many of them.  In PHRF 1, Mark Surber’s J/125 DERIVATIVE managed a 6th place followed by another J/125- Tim Fuller’s RESOLUTE.  Tom Barker’s magnificent navy blue J/65 MAITRI managed to glide gracefully & quickly through the fleet to secure a respectable 12th place- not bad for H/C pressurized running water, twin wine refrigerators, two 40” LED TVs, Hughes Direct TV/ HiSpeed Internet via satellite, watermaker, air conditioning and generator to keep the crew “cool”, “gellin” & “chillin” with games down below when the going gets rough!

In PHRF 2 Class, the J/120s nearly swept the class, occupying 3 of the top 4 slots.  Leading the way was Chuck Nichols’ CC RIDER in 2nd, followed by John Laun’s CAPER and Mike Hatch’s J-ALMIGHTY.

Like their colleagues in the class above them, the J/105s literally swept PHRF 3 Class, in fact, taking 6 of the top 8 positions.  Leading this gang of merry bandits home was Rick Goebel’s SANITY in 1st place (6th overall), followed by Dennis Case’s WINGS in 2nd place (8th overall), Dag Fish’s VIGGEN 3rd place (12th overall), Ed Sanford’s CREATIVE (13th overall), then Steve & Lucy Howell’s BLINK! in 6th and Mike O’Connell’s SPEEDPLAY in 8th.

The J/70s have learned how to sail their boats much faster in these benign, easy-going sailing conditions.  This weekend’s wind angles were certainly to their liking despite the fact it was not planing conditions offshore.  Nevertheless, Dave Vieregg’s SOGGY DOLLAR won PHRF 4 Class (11th overall) followed by Steve Wyman’s NUHUNU- a sweep of the top two positions on the podium!   Other J/Teams near the top included Tom Reilly’s J/100 JASWINDER in 8th, Bob Berkley’s J/70 MOCKING J in 9th and Eduardo Saenz’s J/70 DESTROYER in 11th.

The big winners overall this weekend were teams in PHRF 5 Class.  Taking 5th in class and 5th overall was Mark Clements’ J/24 BRIGADOON.  Next J/Teams were Bob Noe’s J/30 MAD HATTER in 12th and Ben Nieting’s J/22 RIPPLE in 13th.  Sailing photo credit- Bronny Daniels/   For more San Diego YC Hot Rum Series sailing information