The winds were blowing for the 4th race in the Wahine Series with 16-20 knots out of the Northeast and even stronger gusts. The Olson 30’s had reefs in their mains and their small #3 headsails up. The 5.8 mile course was E-A-A with an inside lap to the Kalapaki Buoy followed by two outside laps to the Ninini Lighthouse Buoy and around the G-11 buoy by the Coast Guard Station.
There were only 5 boats in the fleet as Fast Company and Speedy didn’t race because they couldn’t find a woman to steer the boat as is required. Not only that, but skipper Jim Saylor is off to cruise the mainland in his RV so we may not see Fast Company race for quite some time. It is not fair that the guy we really like to beat is taking off!
Ozone had a good start at the pin end on starboard tack with Weatherly close just below them. Bonjolea II started on port tack about the middle of the line and this paid off as they passed in front of the fleet. Papa Au also started on port tack but they gave the fleet a minute and a half head start. Bonjolea II made it to the breakwater and tacked onto the starboard layline to the Kalapaki Buoy and they easily made it around in one tack. But although Ozone and Weatherly followed Bonjolea II directly they took a severe header. Ozone had to tack twice to barely make it around the buoy and Weatherly had to tack four times causing them to fall further back. Papa Au also had to make two extra tacks to make it around the Kalapaki Buoy.
After the first lap Ozone and Weatherly appeared to be close enough to Bonjolea II that they may have been ahead on handicap time. But that didn’t last for long as Bonjolea II continued to pull away. But the most excitement came on the downwind spinnaker run to the G-11buoy by the Coast Guard Station. Weatherly, with the older Kauai Sailing Association teenage sailors, took down their spinnaker early and Double Espresso with the younger Kauai Sailing Association sailors passed them by leaving their spinnaker up for a much longer time. And the battle between the two boats was on! It was very fun to watch.
At the finish line it was Bonjolea II with Bonnie Tiffany on the helm taking line honors and first place for the 4th time in this 5 race series. Great job again. Ozone took second place with Alison Fornari driving. She hit 11.4 knots downwind under spinnaker resulting in a boatload of grinning sailors. Double Espresso took third place with Stella Fornari steering (Alison’s daughter). Double Espresso was able to hold off Weatherly by 23 seconds so Weatherly, with Lexi Lane-Schwarze driving took fourth place. And last but not least we were happy to see Papa Au finishing with Lisa on the helm.
After the race, Kauai Sailing Association president Chris Jordan gave an educational talk about crossing the Atlantic from the Caribbean to the Azores and on to Portugal with Thor Temme on his beautiful 56 foot catamaran Manu Kai. Some visitors from the mainland were obviously enjoying themselves, particularly with the tacos that Alison had prepared for everyone. Delicious! And I really enjoyed my birthday cake and special rum that the Ozone crew had for me for my 70th birthday.
The 5th and final race of the Wahine Series will be held on Thursday 7/28/23 with a 5pm start. The public is invited to watch the races from the Nawiliwili mole parking area.
Click for complete results and the RaceQs replay on the Club Racing