Please select your home edition
Edition
Rooster GETSEASMART 728x90

2001 Worrell 1000 - Leg 10 Finish

by Zack Leonard 17 May 2001 08:21 BST

Photo ©: Walter Cooper

Alexander's chases Team Guidant with only 16 miles to the finish
Today's leg from Wrightsville Beach to Atlantic Beach took 9 hours and 24 minutes for the leader to complete. At just 67 miles, this was one of the shorter legs on the course, but light winds from the Northeast turned the leg into a long slow beat. Hundreds of spectators watched from the beach and hotel decks, bundled in warm clothes, as Alexander's on the Bay, sailed by Brian Lambert and Jamie Livingston, surfed onto the beach just 38 seconds ahead of Rod Waterhouse and Katie Pettibone of Guidant. Nigel Pitt and Alex Shafer, of Tommy Bahama, rallied for third. The top 3 finished quite close together. Then a huge pack, led by Jay Sonnenklar and John Casey of Castrol, finished after a 10 minute gap.

As the boats surfed onto the beach, they were saluted with a martial display of bagpipe prowess by Robert Copenhaven. Robert planned his vacation from Virginia to coincide with the Worrell 1000 passage through the Outer Banks. "I just wanted to play something celebratory to finish them and I'll pipe them off tomorrow for the start," explained the humble Copenhaven.

Today's leg was like an epic prize fight between two stubborn, punch-drunk champions who were determined to make it to the decision. Alexander's and Guidant swapped the lead at least a dozen times and when they arrived at the beach, an energized and gracious Rod Waterhouse sought out Brian Lambert and Jamie Livingston of Alexander's to say "great race."

Lambert was ecstatic as he faced the cadre of TV cameras at the finish. "It was a tactical and nerve wracking day," said Lambert, "we lost track after the first 100 tacks." "This is my favorite leg, we've won it three of the last 4 years," added the smiling Lambert.

Nigel Pitt of Tommy Bahama was happy to see the shore after the long day on the water. "It was like they kept moving the weather mark," commented the jocular Pitt.

The strategy was simple today, protect the beach at all costs. Although the wind was wafting straight down the beach from the Northeast, it paid to stay close to shore at all times. Early in the race the wind was light and from straight upwind. The boats were not close to flying hulls and they picked their way slowly up the coast. After a half hour, the fleet had covered just 1.6 miles and everyone knew it would be a long day. But after 30 miles the wind shifted East and the fleet tightly reached along the beach for an hour in light winds. Five miles later the wind shifted back on the nose and filled in strong at 12-15 knots. The fleet then sailed the final 25 miles upwind, double trapezing. Many of the teams that had good speed in the lighter part of the leg struggled and vice versa. Carl Roberts and David Lennard of Sail for Sight moved from 10th to 5th once the wind filled. Tommy Bahama overhauled Castrol quickly as well. Pyacht Men held 5th for most of the leg, but dropped to 9th when the breeze filled. Jay Sonnenklar, of Castrol, felt that the top 3 boats had an edge on speed and savvy. "We just didn't change gears as well as the top guys when the breeze filled," commented Sonnenklar.

Lambert and Waterhouse traded leads and tacks for 67 miles today. This leg was a bit like the America's Cup of catamaran distance racing. For the last 5 miles of the leg, Alexander's used match racing tactics to protect the shore, tacking on the wind of Guidant when Waterhouse pointed his boat towards the shore and allowing him clear air position when he pointed out, away from the shore, on port tack. The strategy worked to perfection.

The competitors varied in their opinion of today's racing conditions. It is rare, even in the Worrell 1000, for the fleet to sail upwind for most of 67 miles. Some of the racers were exhausted and commented that they would have preferred some reaching or running, but Les Bauman of Team Fully Involved would have none of that candy-ass attitude. "Today was like real racing," raved a pumped up Bauman in the hotel elevator, "you were tacking and ducking and comparing speed." "Unlike the night legs where you are sailing alone, you could see mistakes. In fact, we missed one shift near the finish and lost 5 boats, but that's what racing is." Bauman, a fireman by trade, said that this was his second favorite leg. Only the leg from Jensen Beach to Cocoa Beach in crazy, survival conditions thrilled him more.

The GPS has revolutionized this race from a competition and safety standpoint. But today, a GPS helped from a statistical standpoint. Mike Walker, shore chief for Dinghy Shop, plugs his team's GPS into his laptop at the end of each day and voila! The track that the team sailed is illuminated on a chart for criticism and acclaim. Looking at the track today he counted 80 tacks for the Dinghy Shop team.

Tomorrow the wind should rotate around to the East and provide a smoother run. Tomorrow is also the craziest leg for the shore-side staff. The land-route to Hatteras requires a ferry from the mainland to Okracoke Island, and then another ferry from Okracoke over to Hatteras. If you miss the ferry, you miss the finish. The drive takes on a "Cannonball Run" flavor as teams compete to make the first ferries.

More Information:

Related Articles

11 teams already registered for Worrell 1000 Race
1000 miles of offshore sailing for the most daring and capable sailors They said it couldn't happen. They said that the Worrell would never again be the revered event it once was. So - the Organizing Authority, made up of former Worrell Competitors, Race Officials and a few "fans" started planning its comeback for 2019. Posted on 25 Feb
2001 Worrell 1000 - Final Leg Finish
The 2001 Worrell 1000 has come to a close and will forever be remembered as the upside down race. Th The 2001 Worrell 1000 has come to a close and will forever be remembered as the upside down race. The early legs in South Florida nearly decimated the fleet with huge surf and strong winds, while the notorious Cape Hatteras was as tame as a pussy cat. Posted on 20 May 2001
2001 Worrell 1000 - Leg 12 Finish
The surf was so large at the finish that with proper timing a boat could catch the wave and accelera The surf was so large at the finish that with proper timing a boat could catch the wave and accelerate to more than 10 knots in just 1 knot of wind. The beach here is extremely steep, so the boats that caught the wave came to an abrupt halt. Posted on 19 May 2001
2001 Worrell 1000 - Leg 11 Finish
At 1:15 AM Lambert and Livingston of Alexanders on the Bay ghosted onto the beach to win their 9th At 1:15 AM Lambert and Livingston of Alexanders on the Bay ghosted onto the beach to win their 9th leg of this race. While 15 hours doesnt touch the longest leg ever in Worrell 1000 history it was insult to injury after the previous leg. Posted on 18 May 2001
2001 Worrell 1000 - Leg 9 Finish
While the shore crews and race officials set up camp at the Blockade Runner Resort in Wrightsville B While the shore crews and race officials set up camp at the Blockade Runner Resort in Wrightsville Beach, the wind went from West to Northwest to North and eventually to Northeast. Race Director Mike Worrell modified his ETA for the fleet. Posted on 16 May 2001
2001 Worrell 1000 - Leg 8 Finish
Team Guidant must have drawn inspiration from the return of injured teammate Sandra Tartaglino. They Team Guidant must have drawn inspiration from the return of injured teammate Sandra Tartaglino. They arrived 10 minutes ahead of second place, Tommy Bahama, and 31 minutes up on fourth place, Alexanders, to cut into their big lead. Posted on 14 May 2001
2001 Worrell 1000 - Leg 7 Finish
The fleet started this evening in a Southerly breeze and made great time towards Isle of Palms for 5 The fleet started this evening in a Southerly breeze and made great time towards Isle of Palms for 50 miles until a cold front arrived from the Northwest. Sailing the last 18-25 miles upwind added at least an hour to the finishing times. Posted on 13 May 2001
2001 Worrell 1000 - Leg 6 Finish
Leg 6 began in a 5 knot easterly, but the breeze built an hour into the race and the whole fleet was Leg 6 began in a 5 knot easterly, but the breeze built an hour into the race and the whole fleet was soon trapezing with spinnakers flying. The 12 - 15 knot breeze slowly shifted from East to South during the course of the day. Posted on 12 May 2001
2001 Worrell 1000 - Leg 5 Finish
Brian Lambert and Jamie Livingston of Alexanders on the Bay held off Waterhouse and Pettibone of Gu Brian Lambert and Jamie Livingston of Alexanders on the Bay held off Waterhouse and Pettibone of Guidant to win their fifth straight leg and build on their overall lead. Lambert and Livingston led from the start and built a 15-minute advantage. Posted on 11 May 2001
2001 Worrell 1000 - Leg 4 Finish
Leg 4 from Cocoa Beach to Daytona Beach was not as eventful as the preceding legs, but heavy surf is Leg 4 from Cocoa Beach to Daytona Beach was not as eventful as the preceding legs, but heavy surf is still hammering the Florida coastline and the finish was tricky in the sagging, 5-knot breeze. Posted on 10 May 2001