Owners of Annapolis Yacht Club‘s (AYC) newest fleet of one design boats, the Harbor 20’s, hosted their first East/West Sailing Regatta this past weekend. Forty-eight sailors representing four of the five national fleets participated. The East coast teams hailed from South Carolina Yacht Club (representing Fleet 3) in Hilton Head and Annapolis Yacht Club (representing Fleet 5). The West coast sailors flew here from Newport Beach, California (Representing Fleet 1) and Santa Barbara, California (representing Fleet 4).
The planned two day sailing event became an intense single day of racing when races were cancelled the first day due to lack of wind. Sixteen boats bobbed on the bay for 5 hours Friday morning waiting for enough of a breeze to pull off the 4 races that were scheduled. The sailors were good natured and enjoyed cocktails and dinner in the Skipjack on a beautiful sunny evening regardless of the disappointing start to the East/West Challenge.
After a night of prayers to the weather gods, the race organizers were rewarded with a gentle breeze Saturday morning that built to 12 to 13 knots by the end of the day allowing the race committee to orchestrate 6 races between 11am and 4:30pm to make up for the day before.
At the awards banquet in the Commodore’s room later Saturday night the winners of the East West challenge were announced. Tom and Jane Schock from NHYC won first prize scoring nothing less than 2nd place in all 6 races. Second place was awarded to Skipper Eric Norman from SCYC. Gary Thorne from BYC received third place and fourth place was given to Marshall and Susan Steele from AYC.
The winning Fleet was Fleet 1 of Newport Beach, followed by Fleet 3 of South Carolina, Fleet 5 of Annapolis and then Fleet 4 of Santa Barbara. Most importantly, the winner of the East/West Regatta was the East Coast. The Annapolis Yacht Club will keep the trophy for six months and then send it down to Hilton Head for the remainder of the year. At the conclusion of the weekend’s activities, Howard Brooks, Harbor 20 Fleet Captain expressed gratitude to all who contributed to the success of the event. “It was rewarding to have the East Coast win the trophy for the second time. Judging from the comments of those who attended, I think it is fair to say that AYC and Fleet 5 have now set the pace for future East / West Challenges. I would especially like to thank all of our members who hosted out of town guests, those who allowed the use of their boats, and those who provided owners representatives for the races.”
Needless to say, hosting a Harbor-20 event such as this in just our 2nd year of Annapolis Fleet 5 existence was a big challenge and a new experience for our Harbor-20 owners. It was rewarding for us to work closely with George Anderson and his Race Committee team who did an outstanding job of conducting the races, and scoring the results. Regatta Manager Linda Ambrose was a tremendous help in the registration and budgeting process and work closely with Annapolis Yacht Sales, who helped sponsor the event and with Weems & Plath who contributed to the awards, and keepsakes for the event. Putting this combination of talent together with our outstanding chef and banquet management team provided a winning combination that shined the spotlight on AYC as one of the nations truly great Yacht Clubs.
Our thanks also go’s to John and Marline Patmore, & Brooks Stallings for providing the support boat, to Pat Brooks for providing the host boat, and to Renee Kizziar for helping with the lunch program. Without them and the many other people who helped with the program, we could not have had such a successful event.
Howard Brooks & Cathie Trogdon