Grandmasters Team Racing Regatta
On the first weekend in August, Connecticut's Noroton Yacht Club won the inaugural Grandmasters Team Racing Regatta. Members of the winning NYC team were Peter Wilson, team captain, sailing with his wife Carolyn, Peter Galloway and Jim Linville, Ed Sweeney, Arts Collins and Lee Morrison and Bill Jayson with Basil Lyden and Warren Costikyan. In second place was New York Yacht Club and American Yacht Club took third.
Other teams in the regatta were Southern Yacht Club, St. Francis Yacht Club and St. Petersburg Yacht Club. Event chair David Bush-Brown said, "As the popularity of team racing continues to surge, the Grandmasters was an opportunity to bring together sailors who have been competing against each other for more than 45 years. This event included America's Cup participants from Valiant, Intrepid, and Courageous as well as offshore and one-design world champions and Bermuda Race winners."
Targeted to offer continuing high level competition to the large number of experienced veteran team racers, the Grandmasters event saw great breezes, friendly camaraderie and intense competition. Skippers were at least 55 years old, with crew in the 45+ range. The PRO was Patty O'Donnell and John Pratt led the umpire team.
Some stats from the weekend: TOTAL Competitors - 60, TOTAL number of races - 51 (three round-robins and a mini championship round-robin), TOTAL Advil consumed - 517 and AVERAGE AGE - ageless!
The second regatta, the Morgan Cup, has become the USA's de-facto national keelboat team racing championship. It took place from 13 to 15 August. The Morgan Cup was originally presented by the members of the New York Yacht Club to J. P. Morgan as a token of esteem and a mark of appreciation of his service to the Club as Commodore, 1919-1921. It is dedicated as the perpetual award for the winning team of this regatta, officially titled as the New York Yacht Club Morgan Cup Team Race Invitational. The Event Chair was Senet Bischoff, the Regatta PRO was Ron Hopkins and Steve Wolff was Chief Umpire.
Winning the event, bouncing NYYC #1 off of their perch after a total of 84 races (NYYC 1 had won this event for the last five years) was Seawanaka Corinthian Yacht Club. Hailing from Oyster Bay on NY's Long Island, the team was led by Captain and Skipper Tim Wadlow, sailing with Robbie Dean, Kyle Shattuck, and Ned Jones. In boat two were Skipper Karl Ziegler, Mike Welch, Greg Stevens and Cathy Hoyt. Andy Herlihy was skipper of the third boat sailing with Liz Herlihy, Pat Donegan and Chris Murray. Larchmont Yacht Club took second with Pequot Yacht Club in third.
The other teams were New York Yacht Club Team's #1 and #2, Annapolis Yacht Club, California's Newport Harbor Yacht Club and New Orleans' Southern Yacht Club. Event chair Senet Bischoff said "Where else can you find dozens of college All-Americans, six collegiate "Sailors of the Year", Olympic sailors, match-racing champions and America's Cup sailors competing head to head? This is a testament to the unique opportunity that team racing offers sailors."
George R Hinman Masters Invitational Trophy
The third team racing regatta of this NYYC series took place on August 20-22 when NYYC Harbor Court hosted the Commodore George R. Hinman Masters Invitational Trophy. The age limits were 45 to skipper and age 40 to crew. The twelve teams and 135 sailors competed in 90 races with Sonars and J-22s, both with spinnakers.
The Event Chair was Peter Benedetto, the PRO was Colin Gordon and Charlie Cook was the Chief Umpire. Competing clubs included Annapolis Yacht Club with US SAILING President Gary Jobson onboard, New York Yacht Club, Southern Yacht Club, Boston Yacht Club, Noroton Yacht Club, St. Francis Yacht Club, Eastern Yacht Club, Royal Thames Yacht Club, Storm Trysail/Ida Lewis Yacht Club, Larchmont Yacht Club, Seawanhaka Corinthian Yacht Club and Texas Corinthian Yacht Club. "Team racing is a magnificent opportunity for sailors to test their skills in a different way," said Jobson. "You need excellent tactics, first-class boat speed and a solid understanding of the rules. With on-the-water umpiring the racing is fast-paced and the competition is intense. Team racing will be a big part of the future of competitive sailing."
The winning Hinman Masters team was Noroton Yacht Club with Lee Morrison (Team Captain and Skipper) sailing with Susan Morrison, Don Vasta and Karl Ziegler. Skipper Two was Tom Kinney sailing with Britt Hall, Kevin Sheehan and Jim Linville. The third skipper was Steve Shepstone sailing with Melissa Shepstone, Kari Roberts and Paul Barringer. In second place was Eastern Yacht Club in Marblehead, MA and Southern Yacht Club took third.
The fourth part of this very competitive NYYC series is the NYYC Vanguard 15 Team Race Championship which will be held this upcoming weekend of 28-29 August. This is for sailors from college age to mid thirties. The majority of these competitors learned to team race in college where it is one of the three national championship divisions.
Rob Richards is the Event Chair and PRO. This regatta will feature "3 minute justice" where protests are decided on the water with members of two impartial teams acting as judges. The regatta is "bring your own" Vanguard 15s and there will be 20 teams competing with many practicing for the upcoming US Sailing Team Racing Championships for the Hinman Trophy. This will be the last big team racing regatta until the Hinman, the US National Team Racing Championship, which takes place in Seattle, WA from September 30 to October 3.
NYYC Past Commodore George Hinman noted "Our commitment to team racing has been a tremendous asset to our club. Our members are able to compete in a format that calls on all their sailing skills, builds lasting friendships and is at the leading edge of the sport. As importantly, it makes our club attractive to younger sailors and as relevant now as it has been across its 166 year history."
For more information about NYYC's team racing program and the names of all of the competitors, visit the website at www.nyyc.org and click on Team Racing on the top left of the home page.