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Archive for October, 2007

CYC Offers Seminar for ’08 Race to Mackinac Competitors

Tuesday, October 30th, 2007

Chicago Yacht Club announces today that it will offer a special seminar for new participants in its annual Race to Mackinac, presented by Lands’ End. The seminar is titled Race to Mackinac 2008 – Getting Started, and will be held at Chicago Yacht Club, 400 E. Monroe Street, Chicago, Ill., on December 8, 2007 from 9:00 a.m. to Noon. The cost is $15.00 and includes a continental breakfast.Chicago Yacht Club has already received a record number of requests from sailors around the world seeking invitations to the 100th Race to Mackinac, which begins July 19, 2008. The December seminar is designed to provide first time participants with information and insight on how to prepare a boat and crew for this exciting and challenging event. In particular, this seminar will cover: the i nvitation and request process, the Race to Mackinac website and race documents, safety considerations and the schedule of pre-race and post race events. Several winning Mackinac skippers will be on hand to share their tips and experiences. (more…)

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Winterizing – What to Expect

Monday, October 29th, 2007

Recognizing that many readers are in warmer climes or have boats that don’t need special winter preparation, we present this for those not so fortunate. Torresen Marine will have more than 600 boats in storage for the winter months. Most of these boats require special care to prevent damage from freezing water. Our standard winterizing covers some or all of what is listed below. If you do the job yourself or have it done elsewhere, this checklist will help to know what needs doing and what results to expect. Always keep in mind that the only freeze damage you can expect is the result of freezing water. (more…)

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US Olympic Sailing Chair Brenner to Stay Until 2012

Friday, October 26th, 2007

Phoenix, Arizona – US SAILING, national governing body for the sport, has announced today that its Board of Directors has voted to extend the term of its Olympic Sailing Committee Chair Dean Brenner (Wallingford, Conn.) through 2012. US SAILING President Jim Capron (Annapolis, Md.) made the announcement today at the organization’s Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Ariz. (more…)

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Spithill Wins Rolex Osprey Cup

Wednesday, October 24th, 2007

St. Petersburg, Florida – Australia’s Katie Spithill won the 2007 Rolex Osprey Cup – one of only two ISAF Grade 1 women’s match racing events in the U.S. – held at the St. Petersburg Yacht Club (St. Petersburg, Fla.), from October 18-21. Along with crew Nina Curtis, Jessica Eastwell and Kristen Short, Spithill defeated Giulia Conti (Toscolano Maderno, Italy) in three straight matches in the ‘first to win three’ format. In the semi-final round Spithill knocked out another pre-race favorite #4 ranked Sally Barkow (Nashotah, Wis.), a two-time world champion. In the other semi-final match, Conti defeated Liz Baylis (San Rafael, Calif.), a past Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year and the current U.S. Women’s Match Racing champion. Barkow, the 2005 Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year, went on to defeat Baylis in the round to decide third and fourth place, or the ‘petit-final’ as it is called in match racing, with a score of 3-1. (more…)

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Winterizing Engines

Monday, October 22nd, 2007

Winterizing Sea Water Cooled Inboard Engines

This is to give general guidelines for the winterization of inboard engines that do not have internal heat exchanger type cooling systems. Variations will become evident in different brands of engines, however the principals will be the same. Engines do not freeze. It is the water within the engine and peripheral equipment that freezes and causes damage. To preclude freeze damage you must either eliminate the water or make it so that the water will not freeze. (more…)

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Familiar Names Slated For U.S. Championship of Champions

Wednesday, October 17th, 2007

Portsmouth, R.I. – When racing starts at the U.S. Championship of Champions this Thursday, October 18 at Mission Bay Yacht Club in San Diego, Calif., the starting line will be packed with familiar names from across the country’s one-design sailing community. This should be no surprise, the event – which wraps up on Saturday, October 20 – is known as one of the toughest one-design competitions since it brings together the country’s top 19 one-design sailors of all ages who have won major events in their respective one-design classes in the last year. The Championship, sponsored by Rolex Watch U.S.A. and Dry Creek Vineyard, is held in a different one-design boat every year in a different part of the country. (more…)

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Present and Future Olympians Sail Optimist Championships

Wednesday, October 17th, 2007

The 300 young Optimist sailors at the Volvo Musto Optimist End of Season Championships had a tricky two days on the water. This Championship is the last selection event of the year for the sailors, so it’s the final opportunity for them to shine.
  (more…)

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Team U.S.A. Wins Canada’s Cup in Closest Ever Finish

Tuesday, October 16th, 2007

TORONTO, Canada – In the most dramatic finish ever seen in Canada’s Cup competition, U.S. Challenger Robert Hughes and Heartbreaker came from behind on the final leg of the final match race on Monday to cross the finish line less than half a boatlength ahead of Defending team Honour. The win brought the final score of the championship to 5-4 and finally gave Hughes the victory that has eluded him in two prior Cup challenges in 2001 and 2003. Team Heartbreaker could not contain their enthusiasm as they loaded the Cup into their inflatable tender, racing from the Royal Canadian Yacht Club’s island headquarters to the mainland, hoping to catch their flights back to Michigan. “We can’t wait to bring the Cup to her new home at Macatawa Bay Yacht Club,” said Team Manager Mary DeVries. “This means so much to us – we’ve all been brought along by Bob Hughes’ vision, and now we’ve succeeded at what he started years ago.” (more…)

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Canada’s Cup Defender Takes 2-1 Lead by Inches

Monday, October 15th, 2007

TORONTO, CANADA – Canada’s Cup Defender Honour, helmed by RCYC member Alec Krstajic, thrilled dozens of spectator boats off Toronto today, beating U.S. Challenger Team Heartbreaker in two of three matches sailed on the waters of Lake Ontario. While forecasted strong winds never materialized, shifty breeze between 7 and 18 knots tested the abilities of the yachts’ highly skilled crews as they battled for sailing supremacy on the Great Lakes.

Thousands of fans followed the drama from the internet, though a satellite issue delayed the live tracking of the races until late in the afternoon. Jerry Miller, President of telemetry provider IonEarth, assured fans that they wouldn’t miss a second of the races for the rest of the weekend. “We had a glitch that prevented browsers from opening the data sent from the boats”, Miller said. “Fortunately the units recorded the data, and tomorrow, fans will be able to watch the live racing feeds as well as the recorded races from today.” The race viewer is available at www.ionearth.com, and Miller is extremely excited to show fans the extensive upgrades that IonEarth has made specifically for close-quarters racing. “We’re happy to make this coverage available to fans of yacht racing everywhere, and we hope to see it become a bigger part of future events”, Miller said.
Racers Show Unexpected Strengths…and Weaknesses

Bob Hughes, the owner and driver of Heartbreaker, has long been one of the faster helms on the competitive Farr 40 fleet racing circuit. In his past two attempts to win the Canada’s Cup, Hughes has shown some weakness in match racing starts, which require completely different skills than the fleet starts that Hughes is so good at. Surprisingly, today’s racing saw a reversal of what many expected from this match: The U.S. team won the starts handily, while the Canadians had blinding speed around the course. Hughes attributes his improvement in starting to a short but intensely focused training program. “We spent 3 weeks working on starting, both in Denmark with [match racing specialist and America’s Cup skipper] Jes Gram-Hansen and in Detroit with Dave Dellenbaugh and the crew of Victrix” Hughes explained. Despite Hughes’ solid starting technique, Heartbreaker lost the first race convincingly, and lost the second by just a few yards. “We saw the pressure in Alec’s sails, but it never reached us, and we had nowhere to go. That’s just sailboat racing.” Heartbreaker came back strongly in a windier race 3, leading wire to wire to bring the series to 2-1.

A quick look at Honour’s crew list helps explain some of their speed – top level professional sail trimmers Cameron Dunn and Jon Ziskind seemed to add another gear to the yacht. Pure speed can’t explain Honour’s victories though – it was perseverance and communication that gave the defender her lead. “We all are able to talk together so well”, Ziskind said. “[Olympic Finn sailor] Chris Cook has a great ability to see wind, and the communication between Gavin, Alec, and the rest of the crew is just awesome.” Gavin Brady had a different take on Honour’s ability to gain on most of the big shifts throughout the day. “Last week, I asked Alec if he minded if we took the wind instruments off the mast”, the former BMW/Oracle helmsman said. “They only tell you what’s already happened anyway, and without all the blinking lights it’s easier for us to see the shifts as they happen, rather than afterwards.”

Perhaps most importantly, the skippers and crews are in good spirits, enjoying a solid rivalry. Krstajic explained it best: “So much was said about whether we should even race for the Cup this year – should we, shouldn’t we, who should lead the team – but whether we win or lose, how great is it to just get out there and do what we love; racing with and against people we respect?
There’s a lot at stake tomorrow. Victory for Canada in the two scheduled races would bring them to the brink of a successful defense of the Canada’s Cup, while Hughes is hoping to tip the scales in his favor with a pair of wins in this best of 9 series.

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CYC Accepting Chicago Mackinac 2008 Applications

Friday, October 12th, 2007

Chicago Yacht Club will begin accepting requests for invitation to the 2008 Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac presented by Lands’ End, which will start off Chicago’s lakefront on July 19, 2008. 2008 marks the 100th running of ‘the Mac,’ the words longest annual freshwater sailing race.
(more…)

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