The 162nd NYYC Annual Regatta saw a mixed bag of every kind of weather possible over the course of three days. The Around the Island Race Friday found the participants in a dying breeze off Fort Adams just short of the finish line. Saturday the skies opened up with rain and thunder and Sunday brought winds of 18-30 knots with 4-5' seas proving a challenging day for all.
In the Around the Island Race Chris Culver's (CT) BLAZER was the top finishing Swan 42 followed by Linc Mossop's (RI) THE CAT CAME BACK helmed by Skip Mattos. Ken Colburn's (MA) APPARITION was the third finishing Swan 42 and Roger Widmann's (NY) QUINTESSENCE was fourth.
BLAZER went on to perform exceptionally well the next two days of the regatta scoring 1-2-2 to win the IRC 3 Division. Culver said of his win, "The key components were good starts, clear lanes, and excellent crew work. We had terrific long lay lines both Saturday and Sunday and it was extremely tough racing." He went on to say, "The fact that the Swan 42s were able to finish 1-2-3 In IRC shows they have the same speed and are equally competitive." He added, "We have a reorganized team this year and we are sailing with eight NYYC crew members which will be our team when we try to qualify for the NYYC entry at the 2017 NYYC Rolex Invitational Cup."
Among the trophies BLAZER received was the Nautor's Swan Asprey Trophy. This trophy is awarded to the top performance of a Swan 42 in the Around the Island Race.
Paul Zabetakis and IMPETUOUS sailed a really strong regatta with 3-1-4 finishes for 2nd place. He noted, "Chris (Culver) sailed BLAZER really well and was clean around the course. As for Roger (Widmann), the last race was a tough one and I'd like to compliment both Roger and the QUINTESSENCE crew."
He added, "We have some new people on the boat this year and others from the past; some who have moved positions. Andrew Nawn who did mast in the past is now doing a great job on bow. Michelle Miltenberger, a NYYC Young Member, has joined us this year and I have known her since she was 1 year old!" He added, "Eric Zeller and Sean Cahill have sailed with for the past 25 years, while Chaffee Emory is new to our team and is awesome in the pit."
Roger Widmann and QUINTESSENCE took 3rd Place in IRC with an 8-4-1 saving the best for last in a very tough final race. "It was a crystal clear day and we were very fortunate no one in our division had any damage and no one was hurt," said Widmann. There had been a collision in another division as well as two men overboard. He added, "We feel very fortunate to have won the last race as it is unlike any conditions we normally sail in in Western Long Island Sound." He went on to say, "We had to concentrate hard on making our 42 go fast rather than pinching and it paid off in big dividends. I couldn't have done this without a crew that is unphased by tough conditions." Widmann noted, "I am fortunate to have Mark Foster as tactician and most of our crew have sailed together quite a few years which does make a difference in conditions like we had today."