Thursday, September 8, 2011

Rolex Big Boat Rocks San Francisco Bay

Crystal clear conditions, sunny skies and chilly winds were delivered on a platter and the tight racing for the first day of the Rolex Big Boat Series on San Francisco Bay has set the stage for plenty of raging battles during the next three days of competition.
Vesper   Photo: Rolex / Daniel Forster 
The 81 strong fleet competing in the 47th annual event are split into seven classes: four in IRC and three in one-design (J/105s, J/120s, Express 37s)--completing two races each and an eighth for one-designs (Farr 30s) completing three.
Mayhem Photo: Rolex / Daniel Forster
The TP52's had a good day with Mayhem pipping Jim Swartz’s TP 52 Vesper by one point in the final point standings. Ashley Wolfe, Mayhem's Canadian Skipper said that  the 78- foot AKELA was an obstacle for her crew during much of the first race.
Mayhem and AKALA Photo: Rolex / Daniel Forster  
“AKELA owes us five minutes (in the rating), so it’s not about beating them; it’s about staying away from them,” said Wolfe, who counts her husband and father among her crew. This is the first time she has gone head to head with with Vesper and another new TP 52 PowerPlay, owned by Peter Cunningham (George Town, Grand Cayman, CAY).
Vesper   Photo: Rolex / Daniel Forster 
Barry Lewis (Atherton, Calif.), skipper of the J/120 Chance had a good start to the regatta racking up a 3-1 today to tie ion overall points with John Wimer’s (Half Moon Bay, Calif.) Desdemona on 1-3 and Stephen Madeira’s (Menlo Park, Calif.)  Mr. Magoo on 2-2.

“It was a perfect day with the typical 10-14 knots in the morning that it blew up to 18-20 by the afternoon, with a nice ebb tide to play all day,” Lewis said.
Mr Magoo  Photo: Rolex / Daniel Forster 
"In the first race all boats converged at the marks simultaneously, and multiple lead changes were the status quo but no one jumped out ahead. In fact, four of the six lead boats were within 20 seconds of each other at the finish. It was very tight--that’s why it’s so much fun. The longer three lap second race on the city front d gave us a chance to separate out.”

The IRC boats sailed on the “City Course” in the morning and switched places with the one-design fleets to sail the “North Course” in the afternoon. Both courses are designed to highlight San Francisco’s ampitheater-like qualities.

In J/105s, there also were two boats tied on point scores at the top of the scoreboard. Blackhawk (Belvedere, Calif.), with Scooter Simmons driving, and Donkey Jack, owned by Edward Conrads/Rolf Kaiser/Shannon Ryan (San Francisco), finished 4-1 and 1-4, respectively. “We had decent starts, and in the first race we were sixth at the first mark, then made up some boats and were able to hold them off until we were passed at the finish by Donkey Jack.” Simmons added that the third-place boat, Bruce Stone’s Arbitrage, is also one not to discount. It is only four points behind in the 21-boat fleet. “They won the season and this event last year; it’s all a top notch group, but we are here to win it,” he added with a sly smile.

Sy Kleinman’s (Saratoga, Calif.) Sloop 54 Swiftsure II and Brad Copper’s Tripp 43TNT both share a three-point score to lead the IRC B class, while in the Express 37 class, Bartz Schneider’s Expeditious (Crystal Bay, Nev.) and Kame Richards’s (Alameda, Calif.) Golden Moon also have three points each.

RESULTS - Day 1

IRC A (IRC - 8 Boats)

1. Mayhem, TP 52 , Ashley Wolfe, Calgary, AB, CAN - 2, 1, ; 3
2. Vesper, TP 52, Jim Swartz , Park City, UT, USA - 1, 3, ; 4
3. PowerPlay, TP 52, Peter Cunningham , George Town, Grand Cayman, CAY - 3, 2, ; 5

IRC B (IRC - 9 Boats)

1. Swiftsure ll, Sloop 54, Sy Kleinman , Saratoga, CA, USA - 2, 1, ; 3
2. TNT, Custom Tripp 43, Brad Copper , Pt. Richmond, CA, USA - 1, 2, ; 3
3. Flyer, Reichel-Pugh 47', Rob Sjostedt , Foothill Ranch, CA, USA - 4, 3, ; 7

IRC C (IRC - 8 Boats)

1. Double Trouble, J 125, Andy Costello , Pt Richmond, CA, USA - 1, 1, ; 2
2. Timeshaver, J 125, Viggo Torbensen , Laguna Beach, CA, USA - 3, 2, ; 5
3. August Ice, J 125, Richard Ferris , Tahoe City, CA, USA - 2, 4, ; 6

IRC D (IRC - 8 Boats)

1. Dayenu, J 120, Donald Payan , Hillsborough, CA, USA - 1, 1, ; 2
2. Mirthmaker, Archambault A35, Douglas Holm / Kirk Denebeim , Corte Madera, CA, USA - 2, 2, ; 4
3. Inspired Environments, Beneteau First 40.7, Timothy Ballard , San Rafael, CA, USA - 4, 3, ; 7

J 105 (One Design - 21 Boats)

1. Blackhawk, J 105 , Scooter Simmons , Belvedere, CA, USA - 4, 1, ; 5
2. Donkey Jack, J 105 , Edward Conrads / Kaiser / Ryan , San Francisco, CA, USA - 1, 4, ; 5
3. Arbitrage, J 105 , Bruce Stone , San Francisco, CA, USA - 2, 7, ; 9

J 120 (One Design - 7 Boats)

1. Chance, J 120, Barry Lewis , Atherton, CA, USA - 3, 1, ; 4
2. Desdemona, J 120, John S. Wimer , Half Moon Bay, CA, USA - 1, 3, ; 4
3. Mr. Magoo, J 120, Stephen Madeira , Menlo Park, CA, USA - 2, 2, ; 4

Express 37 (One Design - 9 Boats)

1. Expeditious, Express 37, Bartz Schneider , Crystal Bay, NV, USA - 2, 1, ; 3
2. Golden Moon, Express 37, Kame Richards , Alameda, CA, USA - 1, 2, ; 3
3. Blade Runner, Express 37 , Michael Shlens , Palos Verdes Est., CA, USA - 4, 3, ; 7

Farr 30 (One Design - 12 Boats)

1. Eight Ball, Farr 30, Scott Easom , San Rafael, CA, USA - 2, 4, 1, ; 7
2. Barking Mad, Farr 30 , James Richardson , Boston, MA, USA - 3, 1, 5, ; 9
3. Groovederci, Farr 30, John Demourkas , Santa Barbara, CA, USA - 1, 6, 6, ; 13

No comments: