Thursday, August 8, 2013


J/105s sailing Ugotta Regatta off Harbor Springs, MIJ/111 NO SURPRISE Takes PHRF Overall
(Harbor Springs, MI)- Sailboats from all over head to Harbor Springs each summer for one of the grand Great Lakes sailing traditions- the Little Traverse YC Ugotta Regatta.  Sponsored again by Credit Suisse, the Regatta brings together some of the best sailboat racers in the lakes to Little Traverse Bay in between the famous Chicago Mac or Bayview Mac Races.

The series begins with one-design racing on Friday followed a tour-of-the-bay course on Saturday and windward-leeward racing on Sunday. The weekend’s festivities kick off bright and early Friday morning with  a fun tradition: a long line of happy people beginning at sun up outside Irish Boat Shop to purchase the 2013 Ugotta Regatta t-shirt. Each year, the shirt design changes and with a limited production, the lines begin early to score a coveted shirt.

Friday night finds a "Welcome to Harbor Springs Celebration" at the Irish Boat Shop for racers only- an awesome cookout with excellent local beers and wines to savor for the masses of sailors-- always an incredibly popular event.

On both Saturday and Sunday mornings, the Club hosts the famous "Pancake Breakfast".  Open to the public and racers, the Pancake Breakfast is a delicious way for the boat teams to quickly fuel up before getting on the water. One highlights (and tradition) of the breakfast- the young Racers flip less-than-perfect pancakes over their shoulders to land on the roof of the sail shed behind them.

In this year's event, six J/105s competed. For the tour of bay on Saturday, the course was 18 miles under overcast skies with variable winds building to 18 knots over four hours. Mac/Bayview winner PTERODACTYL (Mark Symonds) participated. Why not do the 2 Mac races and finish buoy racing in Harbor Springs?  Little Traverse Sailors, a boat of primarily junior sailors came in second, showing that the J/105 is a great boat for juniors to compete in high-end regattas. Carter Williams' CREATIVE DESTRUCTION won the J/105 division, and was overall winner for regatta (beating out Windquest, J/111s, GL70s, etc.). This was the first time a J/105 won the entire regatta. Taking third overall in class was Mark Symond's J/105 PTERODACTYL-- the Mac Race winner!

The handicap honors in PHRF 3 Class went to the J/111 NO SURPRISE sailed by (remarkably enough), local host and hero David Irish!  Their dominant 3-1-1-1 record was, in fact, the best record in PHRF and for the overall regatta with just 6.0 pts to count.  Last year's winner, Dick Lehmann's WIND CZAR took 6th overall with a 1.5-3-12-15 tally.  Larry Taunt's J/35 BAD DOG was 9th, Larry Schell's J/35 TOUCH OF GREY was 11th and Brad Schell's newly-unwrapped J/111 UTAH was 12th.

In the PHRF White sails cruising division, the J/42 JAYWALKER sailed by Bill Stellin continued her fast cruising tradition to take 3rd overall in her class.  For more Ugotta Regatta sailing information