Saturday, May 18, 2013

GOLD DIGGER Wins J/44s AYC Series

Wilbanks Duo Crush J/105 Class
(Rye, New York)- The conclusion of the American YC Spring Series took place this past weekend with some interesting outcomes for some of the classes, both IRC as well as in the one-design realm.  As usual, the AYC PRO's did a fabulous job of producing great race management and ensuring the fleet enjoyed eleven races our four days of racing on the notoriously fickle Long Island Sound!

After the first weekend of sailing, the thirteen strong J/105 class had great racing and Sean and Susan Doyle's KESTREL were leading the class. However, after a brilliant start to the series, the second weekend of sailing proved to be their "Icarus-like" fall from the skies, dropping in some whopper races like 10-8-10 finishes to drop into second place for the series.  Rising like a "phoenix from the ashes" was the team from Cedar Point, George and Alex Wilbanks, on board REVELATION.  Sailing like champions, they hung tough on the last weekend to "close the deal" and take the J/105 Spring Series class championship.  Third was Paul Beaudin's LOULOU.

Amongst the J/44 one-design class, their "ring-leader", Jim Bishop on his famously sea-foam green GOLD DIGGER, led all the teams home onto the podium, sailing a remarkably consistent series and never falling below fifth for the series to be crowned J/44 class champion.  Sailing equally as well was Len Sitar's VAMP, finishing strongly with a 2-1-3-1 but not enough to dethrone the champion of all J/44 sailing- the DIGGER boys.  Third behind these veterans were RESOLUTE (Don & Rick Rave), fourth Bill Ketcham's MAXINE and fifth Jeff Willis's CHALLENGE IV.

In the IRC 1 class, the province of the big, exotic boats from New York and Connecticut, the J/133 ANTIDOTE sailed by Ron Richman sailed a terrific series of five races on the last weekend to climb into fourth overall.  A very consistent and well-deserved performance.

In IRC 3 Class, the J/122s were led home by the WINGS team with Mike Bruno and crew finishing with an emphatic 1-1 to claim second overall for the series.  Stephen Furnary's PATRIOT was second J/122 and 4th in class overall.  First J/109 was not too surprising, Rick Lyall's STORM taking the fifth spot in class.

PHRF 1 saw an ascendant team onboard Sedgewick Ward's J/111 BRAVO winning the last race and securing 3rd overall in class.

PHRF 2 had the J/109 ZUMA sailed by the trio of Macrae, Sykes and Chronert earn a 4th overall in their division.

Finally, in PHRF 3 we find the domain of J/29s contested quite heavily each and every year.  More often than not, the family team of John and Tony Esposito onboard their famous HUSTLER are riding their horse hard around the track to win just about every time they're competing.  Incredibly, 2013 was an unlucky year for this duo, having to settle for 2nd overall.  Another J/29, SMOKIN J, sailed by another family team- Tom and Julie Sinatra, sailed a very nice series to take 4th overall.  For more American YC Spring Series sailing information