Road To The Cup – Week 9


Road To The Cup – Week 9

Top-10 as of 7/23/17


Six boats showed up for the final Twilight before the Race Week break.  This from John Casler.  “During the lead-up to 7:00, the breeze was very light out of the South, but fading fast.  The RC had 22, the nun off the Fort, and mid-channel can 21, twice around, as posted.  Two or three minutes before the start sequence, though, an Easterly filled in fairly quickly, such that “22” could be fetched from most points on the line.  The new breeze also left us with no true beat.  (This being Twilights, it would have been difficult to move the booth, and moving the marks would have required Coast Guard approval.  It would have also made us significantly late for supper.)  Martha & David Martini nailed the start at the optimum point on the line and led all the way around, holding off a challenge from Bill & Renee Heffernan in 2692.  Walter & Eckart Colsman were 3rd; 1398 with Ann Sousa driving and Sarah Sheldon and a third took 4th, 1341 with Tara Cassidy …..  (not sure of her married name) and Brian Drummond.  1775 was DFL


Well, I guess we could all use some practice reaching.  Sounds like a fun evening, though.  Congratulations to all.


Out on the MRA line, 17 boats turned up for the final dress rehearsal before the big show.  Out for the first time this season after her brief flirtation with the J70s was Dru Slattery, sailing with longtime crew Linda Epstein.  I guess Dru’s boat is at the shop as she was sailing Chris Small’s.  Welcome back Dru & Linda.  


The fleet willed its way out to the course in drifter conditions for what promised to be a light air day.  PRO Susie Schneider fired off two waiting for the breeze to settle in.  (In fact, there were no cannons on this day honoring Wounded Warriors, so she honked off two.  Anyway, we all drifted around for bit until the J70s got impatient and requested a race.  The RC accommodated, and seeing the J70s reasonably make their way up the course, she went ahead and rolled into the other sequences.  We got in two races, both A courses on a bearing of 170-ish and 0.6 mile legs.  Despite being just two legs, each race took about 45 minutes.  Current, which was running hard out (Boston to Gloucester), was the dominant condition as it swept you right to left on starboard and was dead on the nose on port.  Starts were particularly challenging because unless you kept moving, the current dragged you down into the second row, forcing people to push the line, resulting in quite a few OCSs.  Shifts were there for the taking, though in my view, working up the right in the shallower water made more sense than going left out to sea into the tooth of the adverse current.  However, Seamus Hourihan maintained that pressure on the left made that the better play.  So who knows?  


Team Pandapas took advantage of their light 280 pounds of crew weight and finished the day with a 2-4 for 6 points, to win the day.  Finishing 2nd on a tie breaker with a 6-2 for 8 points was Team Frisch / Hourihan, and taking 3rd was Team Felton, who rolled a 5-3, also for 8 points.  Honorable mentions go to the lightning-fast Matt Hooks who finished 4th with a 1-8 for 9 points, and Dru Slattery who finished 5th on her first day back, with a 4-6 for 10 points.  One additional honorable mention goes to Team Cooke / Kaznoski who took the bullet in Race 2.  Congratulations to all.


So with that, believe it or not, MRA Series 2 is in the books.  Taking 1st with 21 points was Team Fava / Nash, who won handily even after taking byes on day 3 of the series.  How about that.  Finishing 2nd with 27 points was Team Pandapas, and taking 3rd just one point back with 28 points was Team Frisch / Hourihan.  Honorable mentions go to Team Lane / Heffernan in 4th with 28.5 points and Team Heffernan / Harsono in 5th with 29 points.  Well done.


So, in Cup competition, a little reshuffling this week, driven both by the week’s racing and by the inclusion of byes for two of last week’s missing teams.  Team Frisch / Hourihan hold onto a thin lead over Team Lane / Heffernan, who climbs back into 2nd after factoring in last week’s byes.  There is no doubt this could look a lot different after Race Week.  The top-10 are listed below.




Team Frisch / Hourihan




Team Lane / Heffernan




Team Pandapas




Cooke / Kaznoski




Team Felton




Team Heffernan / Harsono




Steve Uhl




Dave Nelson




Team Fava / Nash




Larry Ehrhardt



Week 10 racing will include the big enchilada – four days of 2017 Marblehead Race Week.  There will be no Twilight race on Thursday night.  NOOD registration will begin at 9AM Thursday morning at the CYC and end at 11.  First gun will be noon.  More info at Info, Online Entry, Current Entries.  And don’t forget the Race Week party will be on Thursday evening July 27th at the home of Jennifer & Steve Uhl.  Elise Nash will supply the bar.  If you haven’t already, please respond to the evite which went out this past week so we know how much stuff to bring.


And now if you will allow your fleet captain this quick editorial rant.  There was meaningful post-race discussion of blatant fouls left un-exonerated.  While I didn’t see those incidents and have no view on their validity, it raises an important point to keep in mind on this eve of Race Week and Nationals.  We are Corinthians sailing against our friends, and have an obligation to each other to hold ourselves to high standards.  If you foul someone, spin.  It’s that simple.  Not spinning forces the other person to make a choice between the entirely unacceptable option of ruining his/her day by taking you to the room, or letting it go.  How you sail matters, and doing well doesn’t mean didly if people aren’t happy for you.  


Other News, Notices & Miscellaneous Scuttlebutt

Nationals Update  The committee still needs hosts for sailors from out-of-town.  Hosting a visiting competitor is a Nationals tradition, and has always been the best way to build relationships across the class (not to mention show our hospitality).  Several folks have already agreed to host, including Elise Nash, Peter Frisch, Team Martini, Larry Ehrhardt, Frank McNamara and Charlie Thomas of the Manchester Fleet.  That’s awesome – shout-outs to them.  But we have at least three more teams looking for housing.  What do you say?  Contact Yati Harsono at  


More Nationals  The regatta committee also is looking for volunteers to help out with registration, hauling/launching and a few other odd jobs.  Spouses are welcome!  Contact Evan Cooke at  


Upcoming Measurements  The Fleet has two more pre-nationals measurements planned: one on  Sunday August 13 and the other on Tuesday August 15.  Measurer Peter Sorlien will start at 9AM each day.  Best to get it done in a relaxed setting while you still have time to correct any problems.  Contact Peter at / 781-631-5956 to reserve your spot.  


MRA Feedback  The MRA held a Fleet Reps meeting last Monday to solicit feedback about how the season is going.  The fleets (who showed up) expressed appreciation, and also provided a few minor suggestions.  Both Jim Taylor and Kim Pandapas attended for Fleet 5 and delivered an appropriately appreciative message.  We applauded them for sending us in early two weeks ago before the storm, we noted the consistent and helpful RC communications and we thanked them for giving us the option of an extra race on June 24th.  In terms of constructive comments, we observed that the 2½ hour race limit in the current SIs is a little long and suggested they shorten it.  We also noted that on a recent race, the wing mark was removed as the feet was approaching the weather mark, suggesting they try to avoid doing that.  We also alerted them to the confusion that can be created when a patrol boat positions itself between the fleet and the weather mark as the fleet is approaching.  We observed that all of courses to date have been Cs (WLs twice around), and suggested they consider the occasional K-course and upwind finish.  Finally, we requested they consider the proximity of other fleets’ (i.e. J70s) approaching their leeward mark in working out the timing of our starting sequence to help us avoid sailing upwind together.


Shark On the North Line  Several folks saw something that looked a lot like the photo below on our line during Saturday’s postponement.  Both Team Lane / Heffernan and Team Pandapas watched a shark swim along the surface for close to two minutes.  We’re, of course, not sure what kind of shark it was, though can say with certainty it was not a sunfish.  Unfortunately, we didn’t get a picture, but we spent some time afterwards perusing the profiles of the various species of shark dorsal fins, and concluded that the shot below is the closest match.  This, shot, by the way, is of a great white.





Heard on the Float  You hear a lot of things after racing while people are rolling sails and putting boats away, but this one made us laugh.  Someone said, we presume referring to the tightness of the rolled sail, “flaccid doesn’t work for me.”  Any guesses?


Mail Bag

We got this scoring inquiry from Joe Fava, “There were two things I couldn’t figure out and you might know why.  Generally, it looked like most everyone in the top 10 points went down except us and Mike Lane.  I would have thought everyone’s points go up each week – could be throw out related.  Second, we had a bye but had 12 points added to our points. Mike had about the same so wondering if this is the bye not being factored.  It caught my eye so thought I would ask.  Not urgent.”  Yes, and yes.  Point totals can sometimes go down when throw-outs kick in, especially when someone is carrying a big number.  The usual times are after the 5th and 10th race of an MRA series, and after the 5th race or final race of a Twilight series (whichever comes first).  As to last week’s scoring, our crack team completed our scoring and went to press with the RTTC before the MRA scorer included the BYEs in Regattaman.  The BYE scoring has been updated and is reflected above.


Old friend and former Fleet Captain of the St. Croix fleet Chris Schreiber, sent in this update.  “We are now living in Maine!  We’ve returned to New England, after 18 years in the Caribbean….don’t ask why.  I’m trying to charter a boat for the Nationals in Marblehead–looks like we can pull this off.  Would you know of any boats available?”  Well how great is that?  We of course forwarded that right along to the regatta committee and hope to see him in August (though have a few obvious questions about the wisdom of his relocation).  


Chris went on to add, “I’m also thinking of getting a fleet going here in the mid-coast (Camden/Rockland) area, and this would be a good way to check out the class here in the Northeast.  We had a blast racing the boat in the Caribbean, but couldn’t bring her up here!”  Now, that’s what I’m talking about!  Every class needs guys like Chris to make things happen.  We of course forwarded that along to the class officers and wish him Godspeed.  East Coasts in Camden sounds like fun.


Finally, we got a cute email from old friend Jerry Blouin this week, with the subject line, “Guess who’s sailing Race Week.”  The email itself had just one word, “Me!”  Love that.  Welcome home, Jerry.  Rumor has it that he’ll be sailing with Steve Uhl.  





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