The Gene Wells Memorial Series has 7 races. There is one throwout of a boats worst score. This 5th race had Course B-E-D for a distance of 4.63 miles. The winds were out of the North-northeast at 11 knots and as this is at the upper limit of the Olson 30’s large #1 head sails the Olson’s instead had their smaller #3 jibs up.
The 5 boats in the fleet all started at the pin end with Bonjolea II crossing the starting line first, a little to leeward of Ozone. It was very nice to see Papa Au out again on the race course with a new owner, but it looked to me as though they only had 2 crew instead of 5 or 6. Well done!
Speedy started near the middle of the starting line and they were the first boat to tack back towards the breakwater. Ozone got a little header and decided to tack back too, but probably should have kept going. They had to tack back directly in front of Speedy who had really gained a lot. And Double Espresso was in front of both of them. Meanwhile, Bonjolea II appeared to take a lift that took them up to the Kalapaki buoy and they rounded it first, leaving it to starboard. Ozone was wishing that they had followed Bonjolea II as Double Espresso rounded in front of them. And Ozone found a no wind zone close to the Kukui light rocks as they watched the other boats zoom off. Finally Ozone found some wind and started to take off.
Bonjolea II rounded the Ninini Lighthouse buoy first, followed by Double Espresso, Ozone, Speedy and Papa Au. On the downwind spinnaker run Ozone was gaining on Double Espresso and at the breakwater entrance to the harbor they were almost side by side. And then came the bad news that Double Espresso was withdrawing from the race due to some gear failure (jib clutch?). Too bad as it looked like Ozone and Double Espresso were about to have a nice battle between them.
At the G-7 buoy the boats gybed their spinnakers and headed off to the G-11 buoy by the Coast Guard Station where the spinnakers were dropped and the jibs were hoisted for the upwind leg to the Kalapaki buoy. Bonjolea II gained even more here. On the downwind leg Ozone may have gained a little on Bonjolea II by sailing dead downwind under spinnaker with the pole way back which results in a shorter distance travelled compared to Bonjolea II which is usually in reaching mode going fast but traveling a further distance. But once again at the finish line it was Bonjolea II taking line honors and first place for the 4th time in this series with Bonnie Tiffany on the helm.
Ozone took second and on handicap they were 35 seconds behind Bonjolea II. Speedy took third place and they were followed by Papa Au. It was a shame that Double Espresso had to retire as they had been close behind Bonjolea II and they were doing so well.
After the race an educational talk open to the public was put on by the Kauai Sailing Association with Aaron Swink of the Department of Aquatic Resources giving a very nice presentation focused on our native Hawaiian monk seal. The talk was very well received by the more than 25 people present who enjoyed a pot luck dinner with lots of Chinese food too. The 6th race of the Gene Wells Memorial Series will be held on Thursday 10/5/28 with a 5pm start. The public is invited to watch the races from the Nawiliwili mole parking area where the race committee is located.
Click for complete results and the RaceQs replay on the Club Racing