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24th Block Island Race Week - Day 3

by Barby MacGowan 23 Jun 2011 06:57 BST 20-24 June 2011

Race day lost, day off gained

It didn’t matter that the sun wasn’t out, just that there was a slight promise the wind would blow on this third day of the Storm Trysail Club’s (STC) biennial Block Island Race Week XXIV presented by Rolex. The Race Committee sent the event’s fleet of 134 boats off to sail in 14 classes on Block Island Sound, but when the wind failed to deliver, it returned the competitors to wait ashore for further instructions and at 1:00 decided it best to cancel racing altogether for the day.

“Between the lack of wind and a squall getting ready to roll over the island, it was the prudent thing to do,” said Principal Race Officer Dave Brennan, noting that light air also caused postponements ashore on Monday and Tuesday but allowed for racing in the afternoons nevertheless. Unfortunately, the front passing today would have only rain to offer and nothing behind it wind-wise.

“It is what it is,” said Kevin Burnham (Coconut Grove, Fla.), a Rolex Yachtsman of the Year and 470 Men’s Olympic Gold Medalist sailing in IRC 2 aboard Jack Lefort’s (Stuart, Fla.) After Midnight. “We’re here for fun, not for sailing in the rain, so they made the right decision.”

That might have been easy to say back on shore, but action on the water in this class has been painting a fiercely competitive picture. After Midnight is a Tripp 41 chartered by LeFort and owned by Steve and Heidi Benjamin (Norwalk, Conn.), who are sailing their Custom 41 High Noon in the same class. (Burnham playfully pointed out that the respective sail numbers, US 1201 and US 1200, are a play off the two boat names.) Both teams are champion material, but they are in eighth and fifth, respectively, and Lawrence Dickie’s (Greenwich, Conn.) Ker 43 Ptarmigan is seemingly unstoppable, leading with three bullets in as many races.

For Henry Little (Newport, R.I.) aboard Charlie Milligan’s (also Newport) Act One, currently fifth in IRC 4, having the afternoon off wasn’t such a bad prospect, even though a few races today would have bettered the boat’s chances of catching up with class leader Settler, owned by Tom Rich (Middletown, R.I.).

“Block Island is a wonderland for things to do,” said Little, who soon began planning with David Doody (Bedford, N.Y.), a crew member off Bill Clemen’s (Riverside, Conn.) Coyote in IRC 3, to buy a clam rake for $64 dollars and a one-week clamming license for $20 in order to dig up a raw bar of Little Necks, Quahogs and Steamers. “Eighty four dollars for as much fun in the mud as you can have?,” he joked, “I’d say that’s a good deal.”

Doody said Coyote hasn’t been faring as well as his team would have wished on the race course (they are currently tenth), “but today I can say we held our own, and if we can get a couple o’ dozen littlenecks ahead of the game, we’ll be in good shape.”

Tomorrow, more rain is in the forecast for the morning, and light air is anticipated after that. Dave Brennan said that Race Week’s Around the Island Race, which is traditionally held on Wednesday, might be held on Friday. “That’s the last day with sufficient enough wind to possibly get the boats around,” he said.

Racing concludes Friday for the five-day competition, which is hosting IRC (four classes), PHRF (five classes) and One-Design (Farr, NYYC Swan 42, J/44, J/109 and J/105) racing. The event is also serving as the 2011 IRC East Coast Championship, the J/122 National Championship (with the contenders sailing in IRC 3), and the J/109 East Coast Championship.

Today was Rolex Race Day, and Gowrie Group and Sailing World co-hosted the post-racing party under the “Big Top” Race Week tent, where nightly awards and daily highlight videos by T2p.tv are enjoyed. (The daily highlights are also broadcast on-line at www.blockislandraceweek.com and www.t2p.tv each night by 9pm).

Race headquarters for the 2011 Block Island Race Week presented by Rolex are located at The Oar Restaurant. Sponsors are Rolex, Toyota, Caithness Energy, Mount Gay Rum, Vineyard Vines, ING Clarion, Gill, Gowrie Group, UK-Halsey Sailmakers, Bitter End Yacht Club, New England Ropes, Hall Spars, Fiji Waters, West Marine, Robert Oatley Vineyards, Heineken, Sailing World, and WindCheck.

A Rolex timepiece will be raffled off at the end of the event along with a trip to the Bitter End Yacht Club in Virgin Gorda to benefit the Block Island Rescue Squad, Block Island Maritime Institute and the Block Island Early Learning Center. (In 2009, this Race Week Raffle raised more than $16,000 for Block Island charities.) As well, a bid to the 25th Anniversary Pro Am Regatta at Bitter End Yacht Club will be won by one lucky Race Week class winner drawn from among all class winners on closing night.

For more information, visit www.blockislandraceweek.com where WindCheck magazine’s Daily Race Week News can be read online. Follow us on facebook and twitter @BIRWXXIV.

Results after Day 3:

Cruising Non-spinnaker (PHRF - 5 Boats)
1. Patience, C&C 36, Jim Goldman , West Hartford, CT, USA - 3, 1, ; 4pts
2. Crackerjack, Cambria 40, Alan Krulisch , Arlington, VA, USA - 1, 3, ; 4pts
3. Manitou, C&C 110, Greg Slamowitz , New York, NY, USA - 2, 2, ; 4pts

PHRF 3 (PHRF - 10 Boats)
1. Hustler, J 29, John & Tony Esposito , Mohegan Lake, NY, USA - 1, 2, 5, ; 8pts
2. Incommunicado, Omega 36, Tracey / Polk , Severna Park, MD, USA - 2, 5, 2, ; 9pts
3. Rival, Taylor 38, David Curtis , Marblehead, MA, USA - 3, 6, 1, ; 10pts

PHRF 4 (PHRF - 10 Boats)
1. En Charette, Noe 27, Paul Jennings , Branford, CT, USA - 3, 3, 2.5, ; 8.5pts
2. Project Mayhem, Santana 30, Doug & Amy Stryker , Cranford, NJ, USA - 7, 1, 1, ; 9pts
3. Rumor, J 80, John Storck Jr , Huntington, NY, USA - 1, 2, 6, ; 9pts

IRC 1 (IRC - 7 Boats)
1. Vesper, TP 52, Jim Swartz , Park City, UT, USA - 1, 1, 1, ; 3pts
2. PowerPlay, TP 52, Peter Cunningham , George Town, Grand Cayman, CAY - 3, 3, 2, ; 8pts
3. Flying Jenny 7, TP 52, David & Sandra Askew , Annapolis, MD, USA - 2, 4, 3, ; 9pts

IRC 2 (IRC - 9 Boats)
1. Ptarmigan, Ker 43, Lawrence Dickie , Greenwich, CT, USA - 1, 1, 1, ; 3pts
2. Cool Breeze, Mills 43, John Cooper , Springfield, MO, USA - 2, 2, 6, ; 10pts
3. Convictus Maximus, Farr 42, Donald Nicholson , Scotch Plains, NJ, USA - 3, 4, 4, ; 11pts

IRC 3 (IRC - 13 Boats)
1. Avalanche, Farr 395, Craig Albrecht , Sea Cliff, NY, USA - 2, 5, 1, ; 8pts
2. Sarah, X 41, Gregory Manning , Warwick, RI, USA - 5.5, 2, 2, ; 9.5pts
3. Wings, J 122, Mike Bruno / Tom Boyle / Jim Callahan , Irvington, NY, USA - 7, 1, 4, ; 12pts

IRC 4 (IRC - 10 Boats)
1. Settler, Peterson 42, Thomas Rich , Middletown, RI, USA - 1, 4, 1, ; 6pts
2. Troubador, Express 37, Jamie Anderson , New York, NY, USA - 2, 1, 3, ; 6pts
3. Out of Reach III, X-35, Louis Nees , Erdenheim, PA, USA - 5, 3, 2, ; 10pts

NYYC Swan 42 (One Design - 13 Boats)
1. Daring, NYYC Swan 42, John Hele , Newport, RI, USA - 4, 2, 3, ; 9pts
2. Blazer, NYYC Swan 42, Chris Culver , New York, NY, USA - 1, 3, 6, ; 10pts
3. Apparition, NYYC Swan 42, Kenneth Colburn , Dover, MA, USA - 5, 1, 5, ; 11pts

Farr OD (PHRF - 8 Boats)
1. Tsunami, Farr 40, Preben Ostberg/Todd Olds/ Bud Dailey , Rockville, MD, USA - 1, 1, 3, ; 5pts
2. Barking Mad, Farr 30, James Richardson , Boston, MA, USA - 2, 4, 1, ; 7pts
3. Nightshift, Farr 40, Kevin McNeil , Annapolis, MD, USA - 3, 2, 2, ; 7pts

J 44 (One Design - 5 Boats)
1. Challenge IV, J 44, Jeffrey W. Willis , Huntington, NY, USA - 1, 3, 1, ; 5pts
2. Maxine, J 44, William Ketcham , Greenwich, CT, USA - 2, 1, 2, ; 5pts
3. Resolute, J 44, Don and Rick Rave , Huntington Bay, NY, USA - 4, 2, 3, ; 9pts

J 109 (One Design - 15 Boats)
1. Rush, J 109, Bill Sweetser , Annapolis, MD, USA - 2, 1, 1, ; 4pts
2. Dragonfly, J 109, Skip Young , Guilford, CT, USA - 6, 2, 4, ; 12pts
3. Caminos, J 109, Donald Filippelli , Amagansett, NY, USA - 7, 4, 2, ; 13pts

J 105 (One Design - 13 Boats)
1. Eclipse, J 105, Damian Emery , Shoreham, NY, USA - 1, 1, 1, ; 3pts
2. Jouster, J 105, Bruce Stone Julian Croxall , San Francisco, CA, USA - 2, 3, 3, ; 8pts
3. Shakedown, J 105, Jordan Mindich , Huntington Bay, NY, USA - 5, 2, 2, ; 9pts

PHRF 1 (PHRF - 7 Boats)
1. Jammy Beggar, Melges 32, Tom Lee , Essex, CT, USA - 1, 1, 3, ; 5pts
2. Partnership, J 111, David / MaryEllen Tortorello , Fairfield, CT, USA - 2, 2, 2, ; 6pts
3. Wicked 2.0, J 111, Douglas Curtiss , South Dartmouth, MA, USA - 4, 4, 1, ; 9pts

PHRF 2 (PHRF - 9 Boats)
1. Whirlwind, Beneteau First 36.7, William Purdy , New York, NY, USA - 3, 2, 3, ; 8pts
2. Freightrain, Frers 36, Dick Hyde , Belmont, MA, USA - 7, 1, 1, ; 9pts
3. XLR8, Carrera 280, Brad Porter , Westbrook, CT, USA - 1, 3, 5, ; 9pts

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