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Mid-Winter Races a Huge Success!

Governors Cup at Smyrna Beach Yacht Club – March 4, 2017

This year’s Governor’s Cup was raced under beautiful sunny skies with temperatures in the high 70’s and light winds – a nearly perfect day at the Smyrna Yacht Club.

21 boats and 24 racers with all their engines, equipment and pristine cocktail boats raced up and down the Indian River in front of a packed house at the SYC Tiki.  The tight course with lots of turns provided plenty of action and the winners had to show their superior racing skills to beat their competitors.  No long drag race this year!  Racers from as far as Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, Tennessee, and Georgia joined the nine local boats for one of the biggest Governor’s Cups in history.

Fred Allerton was on site early Friday afternoon and the inspections went smoothly.  Friday evening found the racers gathered in the SYC Wheel Room for fantastic cocktails and hors d’oeurves where we mingled and enjoyed getting to know each other off the race course.   Saturday was an early call with an 8:00 Skipper’s Meeting and the first class of 8 classes got off the dock by 9:00.  The Race Committee was efficient and managed to get all 52 races complete by 3:00 in the afternoon.  The day had its share of engine breakdowns, wipe outs around the marks and air-born boats, but not one boat flipped and nobody fell out of their boat this year….I guess the fear of shark bites?  We welcomed Lisa Merilson and Warren Anderson to our fleet and I think both have the bug and we’ll be seeing a lot more of them on the course!

A big shout out to so many who made this regatta happen:

  • Jack Pettigrew who designed this year’s stickers – love the sharks!
  • Fred Allerton who handled all of the inspections
  • Todd Steffes, our Grand Poobah who helped us with so many details
  • Gretchen Granberry who coordinated registration
  • SYC crew – Pat Elam (Heats and Race Committee), David Smith and his entire race committee, Ron McCall (Pit Boss), Mac McClelland (Beach Coordinator), Dan Kolassa (commentary), Nancy Franklin and Maureen Ledda (Registration), Steve Franklin, Scott Bedenbaugh and Gene Ledda (Safety Boat), and Justin Wright (SYC General Manager) and his entire staff

Have a fantastic 2017 racing year and we’ll see you all again next year!


4rd Annual Mid-Winter Regatta – Lake Placid, Florida – March 7, 2017

The Fourth Annual Lake Placid Race was held on March 7th under sunny skies and a warm Florida breeze.   As part of the Annual Mid-Winter Regatta Series, the race was run on Lake Apthorpe’s “Peace Course”, featuring a zig zag pattern of 3 tight turns and 2 long straightaways.  Thirteen drivers from Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Maryland, and Pennsylvania competed with twelve registered boats, as oranges were being picked in the surrounding grove. 

Racers returning to Lake Placid this year were happy to welcome several newcomers to this race venue.  Among the “newbies” was Frank Vandall of Georgia, who made a good showing with his newly launched Boat #112 “Purple Passion”.   Also Sarah Orthwein and Mike Boyle of Team Snafu #1314, along with Todd Steffes, and Rich Faulkner took a break from the Northeast’s weather to compete in the Mid-Winter Regatta Series.

Thanks to generous amounts of boat sharing, drivers got as much race time as they could handle.  Three women racers competed in two separate women’s classes (6HP Post ’79 Women & 6HP Early Classic Women).  And, with 2 women and 2 men competing in the 6HP Late Classic Mixed race, Sarah Orthwein in Boat #83 Sundowner, finished ahead of all others including Art “Dad” Gompf! 

Special thanks to Carl Staron for hosting this event, providing the safety boat, and site arrangements. 

And many thanks all for making race day fun and relaxing, including the following:

  • Ahren Surgent for providing the emergency first aid coverage
  • Deb Edmonds and Margaret Johnson for providing lunch
  • Many volunteers who pitched in with preparations and race day duties – registration, scoring, pit duty, etc.


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