There were only six boats racing on Thursday 3/17/2022 (St. Patrick’s Day) for the sixth race in the Bob Hamby Memorial Series. Papa Au didn’t race this week as they didn’t have enough crew and Kato is out for awhile as skipper Kevin Millett is cruising his catamaran in Mexico. We also miss Iwa with Karen and Woodie Cole who apparently have their insurance company not covering racing. Bummer!
The 6.21 mile course was B-C-D with two outside laps to the Ninini lighthouse buoy followed by one inside lap to the Kalapaki buoy. The wind was more Northerly at 8-10 knots. Ozone had their large #1 sail up but were sometimes overpowered. Double Espresso had their slightly smaller #2 sail up and Fast Company had their small #3 which seemed to be working well.
At the start Ozone tried to go head to wind not only to slow down as they were early, but they also wanted to push Fast Company above the starting buoy at the pin end. But it was not to be. Bonjolea II came in fast a little further down the line and Double Espresso started on port tack. After parking it and getting behind, Ozone tacked towards the breakwater to
clear their air. Fast Company also tacked to cover Ozone from in front. Double Espresso also tacked and fell in behind these boats. Bonjolea II rounded the Kalapaki buoy to starboard and took off for the lighthouse. Fast Company was next and Speedy had a very good start with Jeremy Burns on the helm and they were making Ozone look bad.
Bonjolea II rounded the Ninini lighthouse buoy in the lead, followed by Fast Company, Ozone, and Speedy. (Only the RaceQ’s for Bonjolea II, Ozone and Double Espresso were working at this point so it is hard to comment on a lot of the action). On the second lap it was Bonjolea II leading towards the lighthouse. Fast Company sailed further in towards the Kukui lighthouse before tacking. Ozone tacked earlier but didn’t really gain. And then a miracle happened! Fast Company’s RaceQ’s came on halfway down from the lighthouse on the spinnaker run. Not that it mattered so much now as the positions stayed relatively the same. Ozone did gain some on Fast Company going upwind towards the mole. But when Ozone’s skipper Chris Jordan tacked early he put the boat downwind right in Fast Company’s bad air. Fast Company’s skipper Jim
Saylor could be heard thanking Chris for the dumb move.
The boats made one last lap, this time inside around the Kalapaki buoy to port. The boat positions remained essentially the same. While Bonjolea II took line honors crossing the finish line ahead of the other boats by quite a distance, it wasn’t enough. Fast Company corrected to first place in the PHRF Class 37 seconds ahead of Ozone in second place. Bonjolea II took third place 19 seconds behind Ozone on corrected time. (When the new ratings are eventually applied the Olson 30’s gain 3 seconds a mile but I think Bonjolea II will get at least 6 seconds so that could easily change the results).
In the Club Class it was Speedy in first, Weatherly in second and Double Espresso in third. (Double Espresso put a hole in their spinnaker early and didn’t use it after that so as not to make the hole bigger so that cost them lots of time).
I believe Fast Company celebrated their victory and Saint Patrick’s Day with an Irish libation when they got back to the dock. We all missed the usual corn beef and cabbage that Dick Olson usually provides for the occasion. You better have a doctor’s excuse Dick!
The 7th and final race of the Bob Hamby Memorial Series will be held on Thursday March 24th with a start time of 5 pm. The public is invited to watch the races from the Nawiliwili mole parking area.