Bonjolea II with Bonnie Tiffany on the helm now has two bullets for the first two Invitational Series Races. The Sydney 36 never had to look back at the four Olson 30’s that made up the rest of the fleet. It was a lovely evening with the winds out of the Northeast at 10-12 knots. The 6.03 mile course was B-D-A with an inside lap to the Kalapaki buoy in between the two outside laps to the Ninini lighthouse buoy.
Just before the start Weatherly with Lily on the helm was coming in on starboard tack while port tack Ozone with Chris Jordan on the helm planned to tack just below them. But Jordan holding the tiller had the tiller extension jam against the cockpit side preventing him from tacking until the last minute, missing Weatherly by inches. Sorry Lily!
All the boats hit the starting line at about the same time with Bonjolea II in the best position near the pin end. Double Espresso was the only boat to start on port tack down closer to the race committee. When Speedy got headed they tacked back towards the breakwater and Ozone saw this and followed suit as did Bonjolea II. Bonjolea II was the first boat to round the Kalapaki buoy to starboard and as they headed out of the harbor they were followed by Ozone, Weatherly, Speedy, and Double Espresso.
After rounding the Ninini lighthouse buoy in the same order, the boats headed to G-7 and then G-11 by the Coast Guard Station. The next lap was the inside lap rounding the Kalapaki buoy to port. As the buoy was approached, the winds suddenly became very light and fluky. Bonjolea II could be seen tacking multiple times to make it around the buoy and the rest of the fleet thought they had a chance to catch them. But it was not to be. All the other boats hit the same light fluky wind conditions and after multiple tacks they all ended up bunched around the Kalapaki buoy.
Weatherly, Speedy and Double Espresso (with 12 year old Stella Fornari on the helm) were essentially side by side. Ozone went high after the rounding and put up their spinnaker. But Speedy stayed low and caught up, threatening to get the inside overlap with rights at the next G-7 buoy. Ozone was barely able to keep ahead of Speedy and rounded slightly ahead. The upwind leg towards the mole worked in Ozone’s favor as they pulled a little ahead of Speedy. On the advice of Ozone’s foredeck, Dr. Danny Judd, Ozone tacked early out of the harbor.
Ozone’s skipper Chris Jordan thought they were going to be way low of the Ninini lighthouse buoy but it turned out to be a perfect call.