Thursday, September 24, 2015

Calling all Hippies and Poachers

There has long been a tradition in sailing and I'm not sure if it grew with the Great Northwest where I grew up or if it's a worldwide thing. In any case occasionally a yacht will fail to officially register for a regatta through a paperwork snafu or other clerical error. Now the boat and captain and crew find themselves at the regatta site all dressed up and ready to go and not invited to the dance. Now what to do? It's called poaching or doing a regatta "hippie style". You simply wait until the official starters are underway and make certain you do not interfere with their racing and do the race anyway to see how you would have done. With this spirit in mind it has been proposed that Wednesday, September 30th, at 1800hrs the yachts of the AYC are cordially invited to a proposed hippie regatta. For the younger crowd consider this a flashmob. Imagine if a fleet of boats arrived at the R2 buoy off the tanker dock sailed around Huckleberry island and met at Anthony's afterward for a soothing beverage. This very idea was proposed last night at the club and earned the nickname R2A (Race to Anthony's) It's not really a race at all, simply a group of sailor friends trying to shake the mildew off their rags one more time on a wonderful summer of Wednesday night racing. Come have some fun!
In other news:
Ian and Joy Sloan have recently returned from a Transatlantic voyage aboard a record breaking catamaran  Lending Club 2. They averaged over 20kts under sail and I hope we can look forward to hearing all about it and seeing some pictures at an upcoming meeting.
Captain Midnight recently attended the Rolex Big Boat Series in San Francisco earning a victory in the Express 37 class. Fun fact Express 37's have been a fixture at the Big Boat Series for 25 years.
Steve Orsini is ahead of the game putting pieces in place for the 2016 High School Team Racing Championships scheduled for Memorial Day weekend. This will be the highest caliber regatta ever hosted by Anacortes and requires as many as 66 separate rotations as well as billeting, entertainment and the like. If possible block this weekend to be part of the action.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Annual Deer Harbour Cruise

Over 50 members participated in the Anacortes Yacht Club’s annual Fall cruise to Deer Harbor.  The flotilla consisted of sixteen boats with a mix of both sail and power.   Cruise Captains, Tom and Anita Nute and Bob and Bernie Bell organized lots of fun and games to entertain the members.   The weather was perfect for on the water activities like ‘Aqua Golf’ and kayaking.  On-shore there was the renowned wine, chocolate and cheese tasting and potluck bbq. Winners of the Duck Luge were the all female team of Helen Prier and Karen Thomson.  They beat out tough competition but going into the final round Helen said “ I feel quietly confident” while Karen claimed “I’m stoked!”.
Deer Harbor Marina Party Barge, Saturday Sept 12, 2015

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Sunday, September 06, 2015

'Round the County

November 7th and 8th may seem a long way off, but if you're planning on doing the ever challenging 'Round the County, now is the time to sign up. This regatta sponsored by OIYC each year is a 66 mile jaunt around San Juan County split over two days. Most of the boats that come from out of town stage out of Anacortes and traditionally good 'ol AYC has had a Friday night ruckus to send them on their way in style, or at least with full bellies and lighter wallets. As dawn approaches usually in the rain and sometimes with wind the fleet begins the haul out to the Lydia Shoal buoy. This year the course is North to Patos (the halfway pt) then South to the finish off Battleship Island at the entrance to Roche Harbor. The 6pm time limit keeps the fleet from freezing overnight. The clock is also frozen until the start Sunday morning at 9 and the fleet dives South out of Mosquito Pass to the 1/2 way pt near Davidson Rk. Then it's back to Lydia Shoal and usually back to Anacortes in the dark. Forty boats are already on the list ranging from a Moore 24 to gold medalist Carl Buchan. Any boat with a valid PHRF certificate faster than 200 is welcome to attend. The fleet is typically capped at 100 boats though Betsy Wareham sometimes has been known to take pity on a worthy competitor that has a tardy application. Historically AYC has done well with ICON, AJAX and Gambler all posting overall victories. If you like watching snow capped mountains in the distance while Orcas play in the foreground this race is for you. More AYC boats are already signed up for RTC than made it to PITCH this weekend! If you aren't taking your yacht, track down one of these intrepid skippers, offer to bring a Thermos of potable anti freeze for the slog to the start Saturday morning and don't forget your long handle underwear!

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Challenging Numbers

Labor Day weekend has been home to the PITCH Regatta in Bellingham for over 40 years. Historically this regatta was three day regatta but after several gear buster Friday nights it has now been shortened to just two. PITCH is an acronym for Pacific International Ton Championship. What? Well back in the day before PHRF yachts raced under a system called the IOR. (International Offshore Rule) This system broke out fleets in 1/4 , 1/2, 3/4, 1 ton and two ton divisions.
For example 1/4 ton boats like San Juan 24's, 1/2 ton were like Thunderbirds, 3/4 ton were Yamaha 33's, 1 tons really varied but the Ranger 37's used to battle Yankee 38's regularly Pangaea would have likely just squeezed in, Chuck Tidrington's old boat White Lightning was a fine example of a classic 2 tonner. Why tons? I have no idea, nothing to do with boat weight, simply a formula that resulted in a solution exploited by yacht designers like Doug Peterson and Gary Mull.
Let's cut to the chase here, PITCH offers a welcoming crew as you enter the harbor, free moorage, live music Saturday night, fun food trucks, fine racing, charity raffles for juniors, 3 boat teams and the Kelly O'neil trophy. The last part is where were in a jam. In order to compete for the O'neill trophy we need 3 boats, currently just 2 AYC boats are registered. Come on now people BYC has sent 9 different boats to our regattas this year. Let's rally our racer types and support our neighbors to the North:)