Wednesday, July 25, 2018

J/122 BLITZKRIEG Blitzes Bayview-Mackinac!

J/122E Blitzkrieg- winners Bayview Mackinac Race (Port Huron, MI)- The “slowest race in decades” implies and defines the light winds that plagued the 2018 edition of the Bell’s Beer Bayview Mackinac Race, which began on Saturday, July 14. Over fifty boats had dropped out of the race, many due to the consideration they wanted to complete the delivery all the way to Chicago for the start of the Chicago-Mackinac Race!

199 boats started the 93-year-old race. The largest brand represented in the fleet was J/sailors from across the Great Lakes- thirty-three crews in total; virtually all of them sailed the 259nm Cove Island Course.

The Overall winner and Class E winner was Matt Schaedler’s J/122 BLITZKREIG from Tecumseh, MI.  His crew included Zack Rush, Mike & Chris Cyrul, Terry Reid, Brian Goldberg, Rick Rothenbuhler, Bruce Huddleston, Paul Healy, and Chris Edwards.

J/109 Callisto- winner- Bayview Mackinac RaceSchaedler commented on their performance, “We got the boat this spring. It’s phenomenal, a great sailing boat, comfortable and fast. We sailed with 10 people.  Great race, fast crew, we were in the right place at the right time. We sailed down the rhumbline, either stopped or going slow all the time. We did 31 headsail changes, but kept going and never let up, always looking for wind. We’d see it and got to it, that’s what made the difference for us.”

Taking seventh Overall and the J/105 One-Design class win was Mark Symond’s PTERODACTYL, with crew of Matthew Morin, Arthur Rose, John Quinlan, Kevin & Mike Morin, Thac Nguyen, and Duane Rose.

Then, in ninth Overall and the J/109 One-Design class win was Jim Murray’s CALLISTO, with crew of Juan Lois, Brad Stocker, Douglas Wolfe, Katie & John Davis, Sam Kashy, and Rob Evans.

J/120 sailing Bayview Mackinac raceDivision I- Cove Island Course
Class D was comprised of only J/111s and J/120s, fourteen-boats in all.  In the end, it was the J/120s that won bragging rights this time around.  The J/120s swept the podium- winning was Geoff Brieden & Jeff Clark’s SCOUT, followed by Mike & Bob Kirkman’s HOT TICKET, and J-HAWKER (Dave Sandlin, Ken Brown, Mark Pikula).

Sailing in the eleven-boat Class E were seven J/Teams. It was yet another sweep by J/teams.  Winning, of course, was Matt Schaedler’s J/122 BLITZKRIEG.  They were followed by Mark Symonds’ J/105 PTERODACTYL and Jim Murray’s J/109 CALLISTO.

The dozen-boat Class G (the “Level 35” class) had ten J/35s.  The top J/35s were Cheryl Miller’s DEAN’S LIST in second and Ed & John Bayer’s FALCON in third (btw, a team with 200+ years of Bayview-Mac experience on board, having won class 3x and the J/35 NA’s 5x!).

Perhaps the most amusing (or scary, depending on your point of view) element of this year’s race was the “Special Notice” that was posted on the Notice Board for all competitors.  In short, it read:

J/105 sailing Bayview Mackinac Race“We have been notified by the United States Air Force that a special training mission will be taking place on Monday, July 16th after 1400 hrs. in the special military training box noted on Lake Huron chart #14860 that lies 13 miles east of Thunder Bay. This exercise will involve dropping inert bombs from very high altitude B-52 aircraft (e.g. from 30-45,000 feet high).

Any BBBMR racing boat that is in that box after 1400 hrs on Monday will be escorted out of the box by the USCG cutter Bristol Bay. Failure to obey the USCG, US Air Force, or any other military or law enforcement representatives may result in those persons and vessel being taken into custody and/or fined. This warning supersedes the Racing Rules of Sailing and any other BBBMR race documents.”

Needless to say, given that it was a light air race and a large number of the Shore Course boats would be in the vicinity, many boats made sure they were well inshore of the “bombing box”!  For more Belles Beer Bayview Mackinac Race sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.