It was raining hard most of the day as we prepared for this last race in the Roger Cable Memorial Rum Race Series. Most of the boats were questioning whether to race or not. But then miraculously about 4:15pm before the race the rain stopped and it didn’t start again until the boats were all put away. The race was on!
The course was A-E-E with a lap out to the Ninini lighthouse buoy and back to the G-11 buoy by the Coast Guard Station. The next two laps were inside to the Kalapaki buoy and back down to G-11 before finishing. The wind was more south of east than usual. A light 8 knots of wind was present and the Olson 30’s had their bigger #1 sails up.
After 13 wins in a row, everyone was gunning for Fast Company. And they helped by having an unusually bad start. Bonjolea II was at the pin end on starboard and leapt out in front followed by Ozone. Fast Company was next, then Double Espresso and Papa Au. Speedy and Weatherly didn’t compete (do I dare call them fair weather sailors???)
The RaceQ’s program we use to show all the boats on computer during the race was really messed up this week and even John Ross couldn’t fix it (and I thought he could fix anything). The boats would only show up individually rather than in a fleet and so my descriptions of the race this week are a little sketchy. With the wind more southerly than usual the boats could easily make it out
of the harbor on one tack and in fact they could get way up towards the Timbers Resort buildings before they had to tack rather than back by the Kukui Lighthouse which is more usual.
On the upwind leg to the lighthouse Bonjolea II tacked back towards the airport and Ozone followed them while Fast Company kept going.Ozone even took it in closer to the rocky beach before tacking as they thought they were getting a lift, but it really didn’t help them gain any on Bonjolea II who rounded the Ninini lighthouse buoy first and then they took off. Ozone was next but further back followed by Fast Company, Double Espresso and Papa Au.
Downwind from the Ninini lighthouse the more southerly winds made it so that Bonjolea II was heading towards the breakwater and they had to gybe to make it back in to the harbor. Ozone stayed high after rounding for quite a while before gybing and they just barely made it back into the harbor without another gybe.
After rounding the G-11 buoy by the Coast Guard Station the more southerly wind made it so the boats could go directly upwind to the Kalapaki Buoy on starboard tack, staying close to the red 6 buoy by the race committee. But the boats coming downwind on port tack also wanted to stay close to the red 6 buoy (shortest distance to G-11) but they had to avoid the starboard tackers as they have the right of way. No collisions or protests occurred thank goodness. Usually the downwind run from the Kalapaki Buoy to G-11 is a spinnaker run. But the more southerly wind was forward of the beam and Ozone and others decided to leave their large jibs up and it turned out to be a straight shot to G-11, at times going over 7 knots.
The 5 boat fleet maintained their positions and at the finish line it was Bonjolea II with Bonnie Tiffany on the helm taking line honors and first place (and cutting Fast Company’s 13 race winning streak short, even if it was actually an amazingly long streak). Ozone took second place a minute behind Bonjolea II (after B-II’s handicap was applied) and Fast Company followed in 3rd place. I really think that Fast Company missed JT Schoonover who usually does their foredeck as he is back on the mainland. Or maybe now that Jim Saylor is retiring he is just getting old and lazy... (Sorry Jim, I just couldn’t resist saying that.) Double Espresso was next followed by Papa Au. Papa Au the Express 27 is for sale by the way and in the past it has given the larger Olson 30’s fits.
The overall series was won by Fast Company followed by Bonjolea II and then Ozone.
Since the opening day race in February was cancelled due to a severe lightening storm, it was held instead on Saturday under beautiful conditions. It was won by Bonjolea II followed by Speedy and Papa Au. The NYC general membership meeting was held afterwards with business covered by new commodore Doug Tiffany. Many thanks to Fred Styer for setting up the tent and for the delicious food and beverages.
The next race is the start of the 4 race Invitational Series where a guest needs to be on board or you lose some scoring points. Grab a light Kauai Sailing Association kid like I did or find a potential new yacht club member and give them a thrill. Expect heavy winds for the Thursday 5/25/23 race with a 5pm start. An educational meeting related to sailing will be held in the clubhouse afterwards a little before 7pm and this is open to the public.
Click for complete results and the (limited) raceQs replay on the Club Racing