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2023 Rolex Big Boat Series at St. Francis Yacht Club - Day 2

by Rolex Big Boat Series 16 Sep 2023 06:55 BST
2023 Rolex Big Boat Series © Sharon Green /

Skippers kept their feet on the accelerator during Day 2 of Rolex Big Boat Series, driving another intense day of great racing on San Francisco Bay. The morning dawned light, grey and foggy, but that didn't stop Race Committee from on-time starts for two courses of seven classes, and one course for the Classics, all of whom finished in front of a lively crowd cheering on the Race Deck of St. Francis Yacht Club in San Francisco, CA.

In the four ORC classes racing today on the North Course area, the moderate conditions prompted use of the medium wind band ratings for scoring. This may have helped bring some new teams to the winner's circles in three of these classes.

In ORC C, for example, there were some exceptionally close race results in corrected time in both races: Tom & Cam Hutton's J/100 H-Pod won by a mere seven seconds over Peter Wagner's J/111 Skeleton Key after an hour and a half of racing. As if to prove this is no fluke, the Huttons did the same in the second race by a mere two seconds!

This was all the more remarkable since Race 4 for all ORC classes was a much longer 14.4 mile course that took the fleet west past the Golden Gate Bridge to a mark near Pt. Diablo. Using ORC medium scoring, the Class C results were incredibly close: the top five out of six boats in this class were within only one minute and ten seconds, in corrected time after two and a half hours of racing.

Meanwhile, in ORC A Shepard Kett's Santa Cruz 50 Octavia continued her dominance with straight bullets, and Marc Morris's Cape 31 M2 in ORC B has done nearly the same with all firsts except a 2nd in Race 1 yesterday.

In ORC D Elliot James's Mancebo 31 Bloom County deprived John Arens' J/109 Reverie of her similar dominance in this class by winning Race 4 by about two minutes in corrected time over Don Jesberg's Cal 40 Viva.

Among the three one design classes, the J/105s continue to mix it up, and results from Races #3 and #4 launched Arbitrage higher on the podium, but all bets are off in this intensely competitive class where Ryan Simmons' Blackhawk is hanging onto 1st, just ahead of Jeff Littfin's Mojo.

Brice Dunwoodie's J/88 Ravenette scored two bullets today, rocketing them to 2nd place in spite of yesterday's unfortunate early retirement in the second race of the day. They're just two points behind leader Pelagia.

Shawn Ivie's Limitless crew had another commanding day on the water with a 1-1-1-1 scoreline. Spindrift V and Loca Motion are in 2nd and 3rd, respectively.

In the Classics, Gesture (with a 2-1) outpaced Day 1's leader, Mayan (with a 1-3) to take the lead in this class.

After Friday's racing, crews relaxed and enjoyed themselves during the Mount Gay Rum party. Excitement was in the air as we approach the weekend's Grand Finale at the most prestigious regatta on the West Coast.

Racing continues on Saturday at 1100 hours. On Sunday competitors will race on a single long-course Bay Tour which will determine the winning crews for this year's edition, followed by the Trophy Ceremony.

After day 2, here are the standings:

Classics: (6 entrants)

  • 1st: Gesture
  • 2nd: Mayan
  • 3rd: Yucca
J/105s: (31 entrants)
  • 1st: Blackhawk
  • 2nd: Mojo
  • 3rd: Arbitrage
J/88s: (8 entrants)
  • 1st: Pelagia
  • 2nd: Ravenette
  • 3rd: Butcher
Express 37: (8 entrants)
  • 1st: Limitless
  • 2nd: Spindrift V
  • 3rd: Loca Motion
ORC A: (7 entrants)
  • 1st: Octavia
  • 2nd: Bacchanal
  • 3rd: City Lights
ORC B: (7 entrants)
  • 1st: M2
  • 2nd: Full Send
  • 3rd: Kuai
ORC C: (6 entrants)
  • 1st: Skeleton Key
  • 2nd: H-Pod
  • 3rd: Chance
ORC D: (6 entrants)
  • 1st: Reverie
  • 2nd: Bloom County
  • 3rd: Viva

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