Saturday, September 13, 2014

J/109 PICANTE Hot In Round Island Race

J/44 Gold Digger sailing off Newport, Rhode IslandJ/44 GOLD DIGGER Flies Platinum Class
(Jamestown, RI)- Annually attracting a fleet of 100+ boats over America’s “Labor Day” holiday weekend, the Conanicut Yacht Club’s “Round Island Race” ranks right up there with many of the classic around island events.  With the standard course for most boats presenting a nearly 20nm challenge, usually clockwise, around Conanicut Island, the fleet enjoys a picturesque tour around Narragansett Bay and an opportunity to traverse beneath two magnificent bridges- the Jamestown Bridge to the west and the Newport Bridge to the east.

Competitors this year were confronted with somewhat grey, overcast skies in the morning with a nicely developed SSW gradient breeze that, ultimately, was reinforced with awesome sailing conditions later in the afternoon when the clouds broke like magic over the smaller boats in the fleet finishing later in the afternoon.

Two of the more notable achievements on Sunday’s memorable race were Rob Salk’s J/109 PICANTE winning PHRF H Spinnaker class and fellow Conanicut YC member, Jim Bishop, winning aboard his famous J/44 GOLD DIGGER, taking PHRF J Spinnaker division.

As for the rest of the J crews, there were many notable achievements.  In PHRF A Non-Spin, 3rd in class went to the J/24 TENACIOUS sailed by Bob Iriye from Newport YC.  PHRF B Spinnaker division saw its top five swept by J/24s with line and handicap honors going to Mike Hill’s OBSTREPEROUS, followed by Henry Lane’s FAST LANE, Maggie Borden’s HEFFA, Larry Buckley’s POTATO and Tim Pennington’s ISLAND BOUND.

The Class C was J/22 One-designs, won by Matt Dunbar’s WHARF RAT, followed by Bill Porter’s USA 1533, and Neil McDermott’s KONA.

In PHRF D Spin, Jim Cornwall’s J/35c SUGAREE took second in class.  Then, in PHRF E Spin, the J/30 RHAPSODY sailed by class veteran Bill Kneller was 2nd, followed by Stephen Russell’s J/34 FIRST BORN in 5th.  The PHRF G Spin division saw a good outing by the J/92s SPIRIT, skippered by EC Helme into 3rd on the podium.

As mentioned above, the PHRF H Spin was taken by the Rob Salk’s J/109 PICANTE, followed by Brooke Mastrorio’s J/109 URSA in 4th and Paul Grimes’ J/35 BREAKAWAY in 5th.

While PHRF J Spin was won, appropriately, by Jim Bishop’s J/44 GOLD DIGGER from host Conanicut YC, Fred Van Liew’s performance on the J/111 ODYSSEY to take 3rd has meant his J/111 has just about gotten a podium finish in every major regatta they have sailed in their 2014 summer sailing season!  For more CYC Round Island Race sailing information