Monday, July 23, 2012

J/111 Wins Bayview-Mac Race

J/111 sailboat wins Mac RaceJ/29 Wins Double, J/44 Wins Too!
(Port Huron, Michigan)- The 233 boats that sailed this year's Bayview Mac sailed a fairly typical race on Lake Huron in the middle of the summer.  With no significant weather systems roaring by at a frenetic pace, it was the usual stuff of Lake Huron lore-- light to medium winds, variable, starting south, shifting west, maybe shifting northwest, but then going back west.  In the end, it means only one thing for the "long" Cove Island course, a somewhat reachy, runny leg up to the Canadian shore followed by a long beat of sorts to Mackinac Island.  For the short course guys, it would be mostly a reachy race.  Such was the tale of the tape this time around, almost two completely different races, "the reach up the beach" or the "two sides of a bad triangle."

Sailing the Division I Cove island course were a trio of J's that found the difficult conditions much to their liking.  In fact, the more difficult and variable, the better this trio of boats were going to perform in this race.  Sailing PHRF C were two J/111s and a "classic" J/33.  To no one's surprise, the wiley old fox of the Great Lakes, Dave Irish from Harbor Springs, Michigan, again won his class for the second year in a row sailing his appropriately named NO SURPRISE! Dave is a veteran of a few dozen Mac Races, so it stood to reason that if anyone was going to figure out how to sail the Cove Island Course fast, it was Dave and crew.  Not far off the pace was the J/33 SHENANIGAN sailed by Dick & Dan Synowiec, getting a third in the division.  And, perhaps most surprisingly was the strong showing for their first time in the "racing" division of the J/111 UNPLUGGED sailed by Tim Clayson (last year's winners overall in the Cruising Division)!  They sailed to a well-deserved 4th overall in a tough, competitive fleet.

On the short course, the eight J/120s sailed a classic one-design race with many familiar faces dueling it out for line honors.  Many of the pre-race favorites were in for a surprise.  Leading the gang home was Ken Brown's JAYHAWKER in first place.  They were followed by a bunch of Canadians upsetting the American apple cart, preventing a clean sweep of the podium.  Gerald Hines team on IRRESISTIBLE TOO from Ontario finished second.  Third was J/120 ring-leader Frank Kern on CARINTHIA, four was Bob Kirkman's HOT TICKET and fifth was Don Hudak's CAPERS.

The Level 35 Class proved to be a J/35 "tour'de'force" with a record number of eight J/35s racing.  After the smoke cleared in this incredibly competitive class, it was a very familiar face at the top of the podium- the amazingly famous MR BILL'S WILD RIDE sailed by Bill Wildner, of course!  Second was the very experienced FALCON team sailed by Ed (43 PH Macs) and John (37 PH Macs) Bayer (only 250+ Bayview Mac Races amongst the crew-- e.g. "been there, done that" 100x!).  Amongst the 35s, Robert Gordenker's TIME MACHINE ensured J/35s took the majority of the top five with a 5th place!

In PHRF D Class the fleet of J/105s had many well-sailed boats, but it was Mark Symonds' PTERODACTYL that delivered and took home the bronze for 3rd place this time around.   In PHRF E, the J/44 SAGITTA sailed by its co-owners/skippers, both past Commodores of Bayview Yacht Club, Com. Larry Oswald (1990) and Com. Jon Somes (2000) proved, yet again, why they're considered "Grand Masters of the Huron Universe", taking it home against a tough group to secure a solid first place in their division.  For PHRF F Class, the classic J/36 POLARITY sailed by Murphy Palmer, the last of its breed as J/36 hull #55, pulled off a 5th in class! A similarly classic J/34 IOR design, SEA FEVER, also managed a third place in PHRF G class sailed by an incredibly experienced Mac Race team, led by Den Balcirak and Tom Burleson from Grosse Point Woods, Michigan.

Finally, in the Double-handed Division IV group, the J/Teams again proved they can sail their boats faster more consistently than any of their short-handed competitors.  A well-proven scenario in Fastnet Races, TransPac Races and Trans-Atlantic Races over time.  In this case, it was the J/29 PATRIOT sailed by David and Lyndon Lattie that won their class and a fellow J-sailors on the J/105 PIRANA (CJ Ruffing and Chris Ongena) pulled off a dramatic third place finish to round out the podium!  For more Bayview-Mackinac sailing information