2014 Regatta dates: June 14 and 15

Video of the 2013 Regatta!

Thanks to Karen Nousen for putting together this great video. The action is fast, the shots are great, and the editing is on the beat. Check it out!

Raffle winners make it to the Oracle base!

Grand prize of our raffle was a tour for 10 people of Oracle Team USA Americas Cup’s base in San Francisco. The 10 lucky winners,  Nat and Tara Powning, Ken and Debbie Marshack, Shelley Johnson, Nick Tabet, Jerry Valeske, Laura Sullivan, Tim Webb and Elijah Walker, wasted no time to coordinate schedules. Nat Powning reports:

I think the tour of Team Oracle’s base exceeded everyone’s expectations as well as the trip to San Francisco in general.  The entire crew arrived on-time Tuesday morning (June 18, ed) with the first spectacle being the giant trimaran with which the last campaign was won being re-painted in the yard where we were let into the campus.  They’re refinishing it to look pretty and moving down to sit as a spectacle with the stick mast at Oracle’s headquarters.

Inside we put on our guest badges, were told to keep our cameras put away, and began the tour/ushering through the huge building where everyone eats, trains/exercises, and builds boats.  We really lucked out as the breeze was too strong all day and so both 72′s were inside and being worked on.  We might not have been allowed to take pictures but they sure didn’t hold us back from really inspecting and even touching everything.  At one point Ken nearly had to be torn away from one of the rudders of the 2nd AC72 as he took his time getting quite fresh with the boat.  People were busy working away making tweaks to both boats the entire time with us nearly getting in their way.

We got to see it all.  Looked inside the wings which were laying horizontally on dollies with dozens of computer lights flashing inside.  Checked out the sail loft where they’re customizing the massive surprisingly heavy soft sails for the 72′s.  Of course they have all sorts of fabrication shop setups for metal working, fiberglass, etc. all in the same huge room.

In the back part of their building they have other miscellaneous things such as dinghy boats owned by staff including some A-Cats along with the AC45′s #4 and #5.  Out here we were allowed to snap some photo’s including one of the group leaning against #5.

From here we wandered around outside checking out their chase boats and some more dinghies (including another A-Cat which is the same make as Ken’s current boat, a DNA).  As we headed out there Ken recognized Olympic silver medal sailor and multiple times Tornado world champion  Darren Bundock and managed to strike up a less than short conversation with him, much to the chagrin of our guide who had trouble keeping Ken under her control.

The rest of the trip wandering around San Francisco was great too, while checking out the waterfront later that day including where the Americas Cup main area is we encountered others from the tour again so I think everyone enjoyed the town.  Tara and I stayed another night and got to watch the new AC72 sailing around the next day tacking and gybing right in front of the Aquatic Park with their herd of chase boats following along.  It was interesting to see that Team Emirates also had a chase boat out there keeping a distance but following along, seemingly keeping an eye on their competition.

Thank you so much for putting that together.  I really think it worked out very well with everyone being able to use what they won and genuinely enjoying the entire tour and trip.

Regatta Report—7th “Live on the Edge” – June 8 & 9, 2013

Fern Ridge Reservoir — Eugene, OR

What a great weekend to have a regatta: 80 degrees, 12 – 18 knots of wind and 28 cats and tris on the water. Our first arrivals showed up on Friday and they were welcomed by Joanne Jones and Larry Cox who offered the now traditional Picnic at the Gate. On Saturday all went according to schedule. After our PRO Richard Johnson gave all the instructions at the skippers meeting, we were out on the water by 1:00pm. The wind strength was steady and allowed for courses the full length of the lake. There were holes and shifts all over the lake, finding the best course was not easy. Sailors not familiar with Fern Ridge were taken by surprise.

Richard misjudged the speed of the Low Portsmouth handicap fleet somewhat, who sailed the course, finished and were back at the start before he realized it. This is the group with the super light singlehanded A-cats, the large F-31 trimaran and the double handed F-18. In the conditions we had these were in their element.

But the other fleets were no slouches either: the one design Hobie 16 fleet, the single handed Prindle 16 one design fleet, the high Portsmouth handicap fleet and the two Hobie 14s in their own one design fleet. They all ripped up the course. Richard had fine tuned his timing quickly and on Saturday the fleets had 3 races and the Low Portsmouth even got in a fourth race. All in time for some R & R and a beer, before the pizza dinner.

The evening provided for the raffle, with as Grand Prize a tour for 10 people of the Oracle Team USA America’s Cup base in San Francisco. The five lucky winners of two seats each on the tour started immediately comparing calendars to find a suitable date for all. We hope to have report from them after the tour.

Sunday the wind was up from Saturday and everyone was out on the water by 10 am. The start sequence was changed to put the Low Portsmouth fleet at the end. The top mark (with offset mark) located just below the dam, proved tricky. Too tricky for some who happened to round the top mark at the wrong moment and capsized. It was pretty gusty there. Rescue boats were always nearby, but no one needed assistance. Thanks for being there!

Again Richard managed to get each fleet three long races and back on shore by 3:00 pm. In the Low Portsmouth fleet, Ken Marshack announced Sunday he had finally “dialed in” his boat and it was true, he sailed away from the fleet every time and had three bullets, securing his fleet victory. In the High Portsmouth fleet Kelly Havig was very consistent with only one “hick-up”: a sixth place in race 2 (what happened there?). Tim Webb, sailing with his son, had a very similar result in the Hobie-16 fleet. Good thing there is throw out, but neither of them needed it to secure their first place. In the Prindle 16 fleet, Dan Nicholson did love the wind and was untouchable once he got two races in and found his pace. The two Hobie 14’s traded places, each of them carrying a race day with three wins. Even though the fleet winners were very consistent, during the race there were many position changes and there were close fights for second and third places. Overall, great racing!

A unique feature of the “Live on the Edge” Multihull Regatta is that we randomly group the participants in teams of four boats, spread over the fleets, whose combined ranking is calculated into a team score. The teams are identified on the water by flags, allowing the team mates to check on their results and interact. It is just good fun and gives recognition and bragging rights to the winning team.

The overall winner of the “Live on the Edge” Pennant, was our own Dan Nicholson, who also won the Prindle 16 fleet. Congratulations! He just stayed ahead of Ken Marshack, who’s one third place finish kept him from getting on top. Dan will have a free registration in 2014 when he will have to defend the Pennant.

Any Regatta requires a lot of volunteers to make it happen. I would like to thank all those who were so willing to put in their time and effort:

Joanne Jones and Larry Cox, who really carried the regatta. From collecting raffle prizes, securing the trophies to boat moving and the Friday picnic, they were everywhere. And Larry still managed to race as well!

Roeland Kapsenberg, regatta chair;
Dan Nicholson, who secured the Ninkasi beer donation, moved boats and wherever else he was needed;
Shelley Johnson and Nick Tabet for Saturday’s breakfast;
Richard and Marie Johnson for Saturday’s pizza (and much more) dinner;
Matt Fleischman and his crew of Dave and Carla Lux, and Charlie Magee for Sunday’s breakfast;
Race Committee boat: Richard Johnson, Andy & Karen Nousen, Nan Weed;
Rescue boats: Rex Ballenger, Ron Fish, Gale Morgan, Dave Brown, Salty Green, Glen Hughes, Gordon Mattatall, Nadine Powell;
Finish Boat: Kenn & Chris Meneely, Jaime Skeen, Joanne Jones.