This year marked the 34th appearance of the Fireballs and the 3rd showing by the Front Runners. There were 8 Fireballs, some coming from as far away as Canada, and there were 7 Front Runners, a new high for the class.
Friday brought light winds and a postponed start as the famous Tampa Bay Calm filled in nicely starting about 1100. Racing began after 1300 with the Fireballs sailing their favored hard reach triangle with an oval and the Front Runners "gettin down" on windward / leewards.
Fireballer Pat Crumps "Paper Bird" (crewed with Local Boy Jamie Rabbit) piled on some pretty impressive early leads, at one point even pausing sailing for a refreshing beverage break at the top of the course (after being chided for not playing well with others, I mean, come on, a NINE AND A HALF MINUTE LEAD?) before resuming racing. The Front Runners displayed their usual tight formations, with leads changing hands often.
Saturday morning revealed Fireball "Devils Haircut" in the traditional place of honor in the Clubs swimming pool, and introduced a new feature Front Runner "Never NeverLand" also in the pool! A Fireballer was heard to say "An idea whose time had come." Skipper Mike Carn took it all in stride, awakening the straggling Fireballers with several horn blasts strategically aimed at occupied sleeping bags, saying "It took the whole fleet to get it in, I guess itll take the whole fleet to get it out!"
The day came with moderate winds, allowing both classes to get up and plane, though, as usual, the sailors were begging for more. Crump continued to dominate the Fireball class, and the Front Runners stayed well mixed. Unfortunately, Front Runner designer Bill Spencers "Big Red Boat" broke her rudder, forcing his retirement for the day. In a bit of mischeviousness, the Race Committee mixed up the courses, as well, throwing in a windward / leeward course for the Fireballs ("What?! No reaching leg?") and a triangle / oval for the Front Runners.
Entertainment Saturday night sponsored cooperatively with the J-24 Fleet Championships was enjoyed by all, and several crews partook of the Clubs spaghetti dinner and fellowship.
Sunday the racers were greeted with a tornado watch complements of an imminent cold front passage, and the Race Committee elected to abandon racing for the day.
Awards were presented in the Clubhouse. The Fireball fleet presented Joe Linton with a special award from the class in honor of his decades of work supporting this regatta. Fireball sailors Mike Thompson and Henry McCray, Commodore and Vice Commodore of the Cooper River Sailing Club, presented Davis Island YC with a burgee, proudly displayed next to the main entrance door.
One final incident marred the event. Fireballer Gary Van Tassel II injured his back while lifting his boat onto her trailer, resulting in a 911 call. He was taken to Tampa General Hospital with a suspected ruptured disk that turned out after X-rays to be a strain. We wish him well in his recuperation and look forward to seeing him come back next year.
Ive got a huge long list of Club members to thank for their contributions to the Race Committee for this event Joe Linton (whos forgotten more about these guys than I suspect Ill ever know), Jay Tyson, my wife Karol Pichon, George Williams, George and Barbara Wolf, Susan Stevens, John Linton, Susan Cintron, Vic Gittens and Don Highnote. Visitors Idarae Prothero, Ellen Henderson, Paul Evans (who took digital pictures for Web posting) and Paul Howell all pitched in to help. And lets not forget the Dingy Dames: Grail Hanford, Jeannine Wish-Yeko and Amanda Hus. Finally, special thanks to Roy Sherman, who talked me into this gig over several Adult Beverages while ringing in the New Year!
Davis Island Yacht Club Fire/Front Mids SERIES RESULTS DNC Score for FIREBALLS = 9 DNC Score for FRONT RUNNERS = 8 YACHT RANK BOAT NAME SKIPPER NAME CLUB POINTS FIREBALLS 1 PAPER BIRD P. CRUMP CEDAR P 5.00 (1) 1 1 1 1 1 2 DEVILS HAIRCUT G. VAN TASSEL HAMPTON 12.00 (3) 3 2 2 3 2 3 RISKY BUSINESS H. MC RAY/THOMPSO COOPER 13.00 (9) 2 3 3 2 3 4 MISTIVE S. SERRE DE STJEA KANATA 23.00 2 4 (6) 5 6 6 5 VOODOO DADDY D. LAWRENCE WRSC 24.00 4 (6) 4 6 5 5 6 BOOMER G. VAN TASSEL HAMPTON 24.00 (9) 7 5 4 4 4 7 M. MCEVOY NEPEAN 33.00 5 (8) 7 7 7 7 8 LOUNGE LIZARD W. OLSON COOPER 37.00 6 5 8 (9) 9 9 FRONT RUNNERS 1 NEVERNEVERLAND M. KARN/MOYER FISHING 9.00 (3) 1 3 3 1 1 2 SLINGBLADE J. WILLIAMS FBYC 12.00 4 3 2 1 2 (5) 3 FUZZY LOGIC J. BLACK FISHING 16.00 2 (5) 4 4 4 2 4 SNAFU M. HEINRICH SOLOMON 16.00 1 6 (7) 2 3 4 5 ZULU TIME J. BORTON 25.00 6 (7) 6 5 5 3 6 BIG RED BOAT B. SPENCER FISHING 26.00 5 4 1 (8) 8 8 7 BLUE L. FARINHOLT FISHING 28.00 7 2 5 6 (8) 8 Results printed on 14-MAR-1999 09:32:27 SCORING PROGRAM BY - QuickScore 716-872-2606 Results Questions? Contact: