Northeast Harbor Fleet
August Series for the Taormina Trophy
Eleven daring boats came out to race Monday, Aug. 3, under a strong southwest breeze with very high humidity. The puffs were ranging above 25 knots and the mean average was in the upper teens so the race committee announced that spinnakers would not be flown.
At the start of the race, three boats leaped across the starting line early and had to return to start correctly.
The breeze was puffy and shifty so keeping these boats upright was a major challenge for the sailors. Travelers were down to leeward and the luffs of the mainsails were yanked very tight. A bit of backstay bent the mast and took out more camber so the sails could twist more and spill more wind. Jib leads were moved aft to allow the jib to twist open at the top and not contribute to tipping the boat.
Gambler, sailed by John Henry, was doing a great job of staying on the lifted tack and sailing the shortest distance to the windward mark, which was stationed off the middle of the Manset shoreline. Moewe, captained by Ted Madara, was also working the shifts and seemed to be sailing the boat a little more upright. This resulted in sliding less to leeward and being able to get better height against the strong wind.
The race committee boat Shearwater broke its anchor line in the strong breeze and that resulted in only one race being sailed. Many competitors were happy with that as they were tired but beaming with joy from a rough sail in challenging conditions.
In the first race Saturday, Sofie Dowling sailing Mischief up along the Manset shoreline got to the first mark at exactly the same time as David Rockefeller who committed to the opposite side of the course along Great Cranberry Island. Their pathways through the water couldn’t have been farther apart but somehow they arrived simultaneously. On the leeward leg, Dowling went back to the warm breeze of Manset but crossed the middle to reconnect to the cooler breeze of Great Cranberry.
The second race got going with a very firm ebbing current from Spurling Ledge off Great Cranberry Island. Most sailors fought hard to keep a front row position and almost everyone tried to get into that cool Cranberry shoreline.
Caribou, sailed by Rockefeller, had no reservations about protecting the left side of the race course and was first at the turn off Great Head. Sailors then had to try to keep their air clean as the ebbing current was straight on the bow and most sailors tried to get their boats next to the beach for relief. The yellow boat brought everyone back to the finish off Greening island with Satin Doll, captained by Syd Roberts Rockefeller, just eking out a higher position on the podium ahead of the fast charging Gambler, sailed by Tyler Steel.
Standings after three races:
1 John Henry & Tyler Steel Gambler
2 Sofie Dowling Mischief
3 David Rockefeller Caribou
4 Tom Fremont-Smith Live Yankee
5 Ted Madara Moewe
6 Peter Ill Silver Spray
7 Mia Thompson Freyja
8 Gary Madeira Auriga
9 NEHSS, Sean Beaulieu Magic Bus
10 Sydney Roberts Rockefeller Satin Doll
11 Fred Ford J’Ellie Bean
12 Skye Ehrhart Pippa
13 David Schoeder Dakota
14 Rick Echard Firefly
15 Nicholas Schoeder Puff
16 Little Cranberry Youth Earl
Northeast Harbor Fleet
August Series for the Danforth Trophy
The first race Friday sent the fleet towards the Great Head off Cranberry Island with the tide still flooding but, in the Western Way, it was already ebbing along the Cranberry shore. Everyone hit the starting line simultaneously and had quite a scrum trying to keep their own wind clear sailing to windward.
Ludicrous, sailed by Alec Fisichella, was in the mix and then broke to the Manset side for some fresh breeze and scored in a big way. Downwind, it jibed and stayed with the better breeze and worse current to stretch its lead to almost insurmountable on the downwind leg. Ned Johnston in Domino did the exact opposite and sailed into the Cranberry beach for relief from the current and passed a huge snarling group of boats that sailed more down the middle of the course.
A second race got going at about 3 p.m. and the Cranberry side of the starting line was favored to draw sailors away from the usually more advantageous Manset side of the course. In 9 days out of 10, the heat of the land makes puffs drop off the Southwest Harbor side and gives better pressure and angle to boats that get to the right side first. Not this summer. Breeze banged in from Cranberry and then after five minutes went back to the right.
Bill Smith, sailing with his former college sailing coach at BC, Norm Reid, razzle–dazzled their way in the shifty puffs to lead at the first mark. Domino and Ludicrous kept threatening, but Freight Train to Your Love, Baby showed everyone its transom until crossing the finish line at Gilpatrick Ledge.
Standings after two races:
1 Alec Fisichella & Connor Ratcliff Ludicrous
2 Ned Johnston Domino
3 Bill & Otto Smith, Norm Reid Freight Train to Your Love, Baby!
4 Ken Brookes & Family Sweet Chariot
5 David Folger & Auria Mauras VooDoo
6 Skye Ehrhart Watermelon
7 Jim Fernald & Stephen Linscott Sea Bee
8 Wells & Mary Bacon MaryJane
9 Rick Wheeler Ondine
10 Scott & Melissa Hirsch Batty
11 Leif Heimbold & Abbott Reeve Triad
12 Kate St. Denis & David Schoeder North
13 Pancho Cole Dilli Gaff
Northeast Harbor Fleet
MDI Series for the Carol and Gordon Haaland Trophy
A smokin‘ sou’wester surprised everyone by lasting all afternoon long Sunday despite the skies developing thicker and thicker clouds as the afternoon wore on. The boats snarled at the start and then began a sprint out around Black Island, which is situated just outside Blue Hill Bay. A very long downwind leg ensued to Greening Island in the Great Harbor with a jibe turn over to the Northeast Harbor Entrance flasher. Sailors then sprinted back to Great Cranberry and finally came downwind to finish directly upwind of the Northeast Harbor Fleet at Gilpatrick Cove.
Henry Brauer and Steve Madeira, with tons of family as crew on their Tio Loco, just squeaked out a corrected time win over the expertly sailed Ranger, helmed by Ken Weg. The margin of victory was a hair–splitting 13 seconds. Lynnette, sailed by Commodore Mike Cook, finished third on the day behind Ranger and Cybele, captained by David Rockefeller, corrected out ahead of Dreadnought, sailed by Joe Weber.
1 Steve Madeira and Henry Brauer Tio Loco
2 Mike Cook Lynnette
3 Ken Weg Ranger
4 Joe Weber Dreadnought
5 Tom Rolfes Sidewinder
6 David Rockefeller Cybele
7 Chris Hopkins Watermark
8 Bonny and Peter Rogers Ohana
9 Craig Kennedy Whimbrel
10 John Roberts Lark
10 Ted Madara Flirt
10 Wells and Mary Bacon Antares
10 Peter Howard Mockingbird