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Midwinters are Off to the Races

By S/C Mark Bird

The first weekend of the Berkeley Midwinters Series is in the books and it was exactly what we have all come to expect from the Midwinters: No wind. Or, if there does happen to be some wind, there is no way to know what direction it will come from. Nevertheless, 38 boats in five divisions showed up on Saturday and 32 in five divisions showed up for Sunday, all eager to race in whatever wind came our way.

Saturday’s race started in a dead calm bringing a 1 hour 40 minute postponement as Race Committee milled about the OCX mark like a mama duck followed by 38 ducklings. Finally, a very light 3.5 mph wind kinda lled in from the SW, - S - SSE so we quickly dropped the mark and fired off the horn to get started. All 38 boats were on their way around a rather short windward/leeward course. As it turned out, nearly the entire course was upwind as about the time the first boats rounded the windward mark the wind began to shift 180 degrees. This made for a beautiful, slow moving spinnaker dance as all the spinnakers slowly rotated from a run to a reach and then finally a douse about midway to the leeward mark one mile to the north. The wind began to fill in from the southwest which had the effect of bunching the boats together at the leeward mark and then it brought all the boats to the finish line in one glorious group making for an exciting finish. It was Swiftness skippered by Nesrin Basoz taking first in Carbon Fiber Everything Fleet (PHRF < 84). Wysiwyg skippered by Hendrik Burns crossed first in the We Used to Be the Fast Boats Fleet (87 < PHRF < 111), Will and Julia Paxton skippering Motorcycle Irene took first in the Express 27 – ‘Nuff Said Fleet. Sunshine Express skippered by Ben Tallarigo won the day in the Kinda Fast Fleet (111 < PHRF < 156) and it was Paul Sutchek skippering Slainte crossing first in the Don’t Leave without Me Fleet (PHRF > 159).

Sunday’s race started out with just enough wind (5-8 kts) coming from due north, which allowed for an on-time (almost) start. As Race Committee worked their way through the five starts, the wind began to drop, prompting a discussion of how best to shorten the twice around windward/leeward course. In the end the do nothing approach won out as the wind not only picked up to 8-12 knots but also shifted 90 degrees to the west, turning the race into a reach-a-thon. This actually turned out to be a fun race with just the right amount of wind even if it was a reach. It was Frank Nagelman at the helm of L’Attitude crossing first in the Fast For Sunday Fleet (PHRF < 126). Froglips skippered by Richard Stockdale took first in the Anything Goes Fleet (123<PHRF<168). In the Prettiest Girl at the Dance Alerion 28 Fleet (One Design) it was Fred Paxton / Arnie Quan skippering Zenaida taking first. In the Not Too Terribly Fast Fleet (PHRF > 171) it was Strange Magic skippered by Mark Werder crossing first. In the I Wanna Hold Your Hand Fleet (Double Handed) Colin More/Alex Hanford skippered Kwazy together as equals to victory. Finally, in the Leave Me Alone Fleet (Single Handed) it was Paul Sutchek skippering Slainte to a lonely victory.

Full Results: BYC Midwinters – Saturday, November 12 Fleet 1: Monohulls < 84 1) Swiftness, J-111, Nesrin Basoz, 1 point

2) IO, Antrim 27, Hill Blackett, 2 points 3) Abracadabra, Antrim 27, Ian Chamberlain, 3 points Fleet 2: Monohulls, 87 - 111 1) WYSIWYG, Olson 30, Hendrick Bruhns, 1 point 2) Balineau, Ericson Olson 30 , Charlie Brochard, 2 points 3) For Pete’s Sake, Ultimate 24, Peter Cook, 3 points Fleet 3: Express 27 1) Motorcycle Irene, Will & Julia Paxton, 1 point 2) Magic Bus, Eric Deeds, 2 points 3) Eagle, Ross Groelz/Terri Cole, 3 points Fleet 4: Monohulls 114 - 156 1) Sunshine Express, Santa Cruz 27, Ben Tallarigo, 1 point

2) Lickety Split, Santa Cruz 27, Rick Raduziner, 2 points

3) Take Five More, Olson 911, Grant Kiba 3 points Fleet 5: Monohulls > 159 1) Slainte, Cal 20, Paul Sutchek, 1 point 2) Mad Max, Santana 22, 2 points 3) Phantom, J-24, John Gulliford, 3 points

BYC Midwinters – Sunday, November 13 Fleet 1: Monohulls < 126 1) L’Attitude, Olson 34, Frank Nagelman, 1 point 2) Inspire, J-105, Inspire Sailing, 2 points 3) Resa, Sweden Yachts 4 SRE, Dan McGuire, 3 points Fleet 2: Monohulls 129-168 1) Froglips, J-24, Richard Stockdale, 1 point 2) Wildthing, Alsberg Express, Ray & Craig Wilson, 2 points 3) Sunshine Express, Santa Cruz 27, Ben Tallarigo, 3 points Fleet 3: Alerion 28 1) Zenaida, Fred Paxton, 1 point 2) Sweet De, Chris Kramer/Denise Kramer, 2 points 3) Resilience, Michael Quinn, 3 points Fleet 4: Monohulls > 171 1) Strange Magic, Islander Bahama, Mark Werder, 1 point 2) Antaries, Islander 30 II, larry Telford, 2 points 3) Zeehound, Newport 30 MKII, Donn Guay, 3 points Fleet 5: Double Handed Sunday 1) J Kwazy, Wylie Wabbit, Colin Moore, 1 points 2) Bad Hare Day, Wylie Wabbit, Michael Sumpton/Erik Menzel, 2 points

3) Just a Hare, Wylie Wabbit, Marcos MvGee/Daniel Roberts, 3 points

Fleet 7: Single Handed Sunday 1) Slainte, Cal 20, Paul Sutchek, 1 point 2) Stink Eye, laser 28, Jonathan Guto, 2 points 3) Outcast, Farr 38, Guillaume Murray Bechaux, 3 points

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