CYC Team Wins Halloween Race for Second Year
For the second year in a row, the Corinthian Yacht Club won the Halloween Team Race, hosted by Eastern Yacht Club. The CYC team bested teams from Eastern, Noroton, New York, and Bristol Yacht Clubs. The CYC team was led by skippers Will Bailey, Evan Cooke and Tim Wadlow. Crews were Doug Sabin, Ben Blaisdell, Forbes Barber, Steve Uhl, Elise Mazareas Nash, Joe Fava, Karen Lubeck and Ery Largay.
Saturday was a beautiful day, sunny and just slightly chilly with light-to-moderate breeze. The Eastern RC was able to run 30 races to complete two round robins. CYC rolled through the day with a 9-1 record, taking only one loss to EY2 team. We had tough races against that EYC2 group, as well as Bristol Yacht Club. EYC2 had some Corinthian representation; the team was pulled together only two weeks before the event, so we offered sailors to help round out the group. CYC Members John Hope and Frank Pizzo both sailed on that team, as well as close friend of CYC team racing, Chris Hufstader.
Sunday was a knockout round, sailed in conditions that were cooler and breezy, with a few squalls passing throughout the day. With CYC and Bristol both carrying the best records from the round robins, we each had a first round bye, but without sailing well we could still finish last in the event! We beat EYC 2, but then lost to Bristol to get bumped down into the lower bracket. We met EYC2 in that lower bracket for a first to 2 wins series that came all the way down to the wire. It took us three races, but we defeated EYC2 to earn the right to meet Bristol in the final. We started well, and then used superior speed and teamwork to defeat Bristol in three straight races.
The Bristol team is highly experienced. Skippers Charlie Enright (of Volvo Ocean Race Alvimedica fame), Pete Levesque and Mike Campbell have been at or near the top of the team racing game for a long time. They had Peter Wisotzkey and John Enright on their team as crews, both of whom have sailed for our CYC team in the past. The win qualifies the CYC to go to the Morgan Cup in 2017. That event, hosted by New York Yacht Club in early August, is considered to be the championship of keelboat team racing, and invitations are extremely competitive. The CYC will be one of four teams at the event that won a regional event to qualify to compete, as opposed to being invited.
Highlight note: Sailing around pre-start on Sunday, Will Bailey was hit with a large puff. His boat heeled over and the top of his mast was snagged by a boat sailing in the opposite direction. The rig broke at the spreaders and came down with a bang. Luckily, no one was hurt, but it definitely added some drama and excitement to the stressed atmosphere of Sunday’s sailing.
-- Forbes Barber
This article in Spinsheet.com gives credit to Marblehead clubs, including the CYC, for advancing team racing competition.
Team Racing: The Team Hits the Road
We rounded the leeward mark in fourth place out of a tight pack of four boats with teammate Tim just in front of us. In two-versus-two team racing, this meant we were losing, and badly. Tim managed to break to weather of the second-place boat and hold his position, preventing the other boat from tacking. The first place boat immediately went in for the attack on Tim, allowing me to squeak around the leeward mark with a quick, clean tack. With the three of them clustered together and going slowly, I caught a puff and established myself in the first position. Tim tacked out on the layline as I swooped onto their Number One boat, keeping him stuck beneath me while Tim caught the breeze. With a photo finish we wound up winning with a one-two.
All of this happened within three minutes of action during the annual Hood Trophy Regatta, which happened this past September at Corinthian Yacht Club in Marblehead, MA. I had the privilege of representing SSA, along with Tim Herzog, Carol Cronin, Margaret and Sophie Podlich, Bill Carty, and Vernon Sheen. This is the second year that SSA has competed in the event, and we’re excited to try to bring a similar program to Annapolis. The clubs in Marblehead are on the vanguard of shared keelboat team racing and provide a nice model, which we in Annapolis should strive to recreate.
The Hood Trophy is a two-on-two team racing event held in 12 Sonars, pooled from the Corinthian, Eastern, and Boston Yacht Clubs, all located on Marblehead harbor. The separate teams had different colored mains to identify them on the water. There were eight teams competing, including local teams and teams from Rhode Island, Cape Cod and Buzzards Bay. The teams included competitors aged from their teens to their 60s, including several parent-child teams.
The event was structured as a double round robin followed by a knock out round to determine final results. With 12 boats available, there were three flights for races being run with two teams sitting out on a support boat waiting to swap in. We finished the first round robin with a sub .500 record but then found our stride going into the second round robin and ended up being the fifth seed for the knockout round. The knockout round operated on a bracket system, with teams competing in best-of-three-series to move forward. We won our first best-of-three matchup, lost our second against the top seed, and ended up losing a tight race with Boston Yacht Club to finish fourth at the event.
The entire weekend was a blast. In two-on-two team racing, the idea is simply that the team with the last boat loses, so there was action all around the course, and most races were settled in the last 50 yards to the finish. Our team had a lot of fun but with a constant refrain that we would be so much better if we did this more often.
That is where Marblehead has cracked the code.
Eight years ago, the clubs situated around Marblehead harbor got together to create interclub team racing. The Sonar fleet had been big in Marblehead, but was petering out as a one-design fleet racing class. Between the three clubs they acquired 14 Sonars and invested in a suit of team racing sails, which are only used for team racing events. The three clubs team race each other every Thursday night throughout the summer. Additionally, each club hosts its own team racing event: the Hood Trophy at Corinthian, the Halloween Team Race at Eastern, and the Jackson Cup at Boston.
This initiative has been a resounding success on many fronts. First and foremost, team racing is a great draw for the ever-elusive 20- and 30-something sailors, whom all clubs are seeking to attract. For those of us who participated in high school and college sailing, team racing is in our blood. But after graduation, there are limited resources to keep going in the sport. Each of the clubs in Marblehead has seen significant increases in their membership age group.
Second, keel boat team racing gets generations of sailors sailing together. We had a mother-daughter team with us in the Podlichs, but they were not alone in the fleet.
Third, team racing is a great way to generate interest in our sport. With tight racing on inshore courses with colorful sails, team racing is spectator-friendly and can draw more people in than offshore fleet racing.
Fourth, team racing in club boats creates the opportunity to draw talented sailors from afar to Annapolis. It was far easier to hop a flight to Boston to go sailing than it would have been to pack up my J/22 and trailer it to even another Mid Atlantic event.
Finally, team racing is just more fun than fleet racing! In team racing, the action never stops. From start to finish, you are working your hardest to out execute on boat handling, strategy, and tactics. And if you find yourself behind, you’ve got a teammate to bail you out.
We have a very similar dynamic here in Annapolis, and could easily recreate a similar program. We have three sailing clubs within close proximity (Annapolis Yacht Club is already hosting team racing events and practices). We have a surplus of high school and college sailors who have one-design experience. All we are missing is interclub boats and sails that would allow us to pace evenly with each other on the water.
--by Trevor Perkins
Hood Trophy 2016 Roundup
Last weekend, Corinthian welcomed seven yacht clubs from across the East Coast to vie for the 3rd Annual Corinthian Yacht Club 2v2 Team Race for the Frederick E. Hood Trophy. Returning to the 2016 Hood Trophy were prior champions Beverly (2014) and Eastern (2015). Ready to challenge these two prior champions were returning teams from Boston Yacht Club, New Bedford Yacht Club, Severn Sailing Association (Annapolis) and host CYC. Bristol and Wianno yacht clubs rounded out the field and although new to the Hood Trophy, added tough competition.
Saturday saw near perfect sailing conditions allowing Principal Race Officer Forbes Barber and the CYC race committee to run 42 races. Wianno Yacht Club held a narrow lead at the end of day 1, with all teams winning several races. Leaving the competitiveness on the water, sailors came together to enjoy post race socializing and dinner in the dining room capping a great day.
Sunday was another chamber of commerce day for team racing. Needing to finish the latter part of Round Robin 2, an additional 14 races were run before moving onto the Regatta’s knockout brackets where racing takes on a structure similar to a tennis tournament bracket or NCAA Hoops March Madness. Teams faced off in a series of best of three matches, with winning teams advancing. After incredibly tight racing, 2015 event winner Eastern Yacht Club came out on top beating Wianno Yacht Club 2-0 in the final.
With the racing completed and Hood Trophy victor determined, sailors and volunteers gathered together on the CYC porch to celebrate a successful weekend. Along with the standard awards for 1st-3rd, the Sailing Committee also dedicated a new award to the event. This new sportsmanship award is in memory of Wade Edwards, a true Corinthian and dear member of our sailing family who we lost this summer. Wade’s long time crew and family friend Tim Platt joined the prize giving on behalf of the Edwards family sharing a reflection on Wade as well as words from Wade’s family to our participants. The 2016 award was made to Ben Blaisdell for his contribution to CYC's strong finish in several recent team racing events as well as his commitment to maintaining our sonar fleet.
The event would not be so successful if it were not for the tireless hours from our volunteers spearheaded by Regatta Chair Joseph Fava and support from our in harbor partners, EYC, BYC and Pleon. Complete results are below along with the army of volunteers who contributed to the 2016 event. All participants have asked for invitations back to the 2017 event which will be held September 15-16, 2017. Photos from the weekend are on the event Facebook page: Corinthian Yacht Club 2v2 Team Race -Hood Trophy.
1. Eastern Yacht Club, Marblehead
2. Wianno Yacht Club, Osterville, MA
3. Boston Yacht Club, Marblehead
4. Severn Sailing Association, Annapolis, MD
5. New Bedford Yacht Club, South Dartmouth, MA
6. Beverly Yacht Club, Marion, MA
7. Corinthian Yacht Club, Marblehead
8. Bristol Yacht Club, Bristol, RI
Forbes Barber, PRO
Ben Blaisdell, Boat preparation
Joe Fava, Event Chair
Lisa Keith, Social Chair
Matt Lindblad, Umpire coordination
Karen Lubeck, Harbor coordination
Elise Mazareas Nash, Trophies and Shirts
Forbes Barber, PRO
Karen Lubeck - Chief Umpire