Bright, breezy weather sent 19 teams of fun-seekers on a speedy -- around a Severn River-Spa Creek course in Saturday's annual Leftover Bowl Regatta, sponsored by the Eastport Yacht Club.
The lighthearted race drew experienced racers in sleek speed machines as well as enthusiastic novices and those pushing heavy cruising boats. They raced around the 4.3-mile course up and down the river and into the creek for a finish in front of the clubhouse at the Annapolis City Marina.
Competing boats ranged from a trio of J-24s to a Cheoy Lee 44, all sailing in a single PHRF-Non-spinnaker class.
"Conditions were brisk," Race Committee Chairman Bob Raven said. "It was right around 50 degrees, and the wind was blowing up around 15 to 18 with higher gusts out of the northwest. It was a fast race. (Sam Owings' first-to-finish) Moving Violation made it back in about 50 minutes, and everybody had a good time."
Of course, the primary purpose of the race and well-attended party was a good time for all participants, along with EYC's annual attic-cleaning efforts to get rid of unclaimed and unawarded trophies. In both respects, the event was an all-around winner.
Each skipper competing received a trophy for finishing, and many also claimed special awards for other notable feats.
"Going in in the morning we didn't really have any idea what we were going to give the special trophies for," said Raven, adding that circumstances and events during the race made the choices obvious.
Winner overall was Tim Mowry, who sailed his J-24 Latent Defect double-handed with Greg Tawaststjerna as his crew. In the spirit of the "leftover" part of the name, he took home a trophy proclaiming him second-placer in an IMS class in a past year's EYC Solomons Island Race, While at least one sailor's family said they planned to have his trophy re-engraved to mark his finish in this specific regatta, Mowry seemed satisfied with his award, and indicated he planned to keep it as it was, regardless of the mismatch on class and event.
Mowry also won a spur-of-the-moment J-24 Fleet award, given in recognition of the fact that three J-24s sailed in the race.
Similarly, J-29 sailor Andy Hughes on Bandit took home an impromptu J-29 Fleet award after placing second in the overall fleet and topping out his own informal three-boat class. Owings earned the prize for the top slot in the two-boat Soverel 33 class with his fourth-place corrected finish.
One potential sub-fleet award somehow overlooked by the judges at the awards party following the race might have been one for a Main Squeeze fleet, since two boats of that name raced in the event. Ironically, Tom Thawley on his J-24 of that name came in eighth overall to Bo Robinson's identically christened J-40 in ninth, separated by less than 20 seconds after correction.
A new perpetual trophy was created at this year's event when judges awarded a "most creative entry form" prize for the second year in a row.
The perpetual -- a rubber chicken -- went to fifth-placer Victoria Ricketts, skipper of the J-29 Inside Scoop, for presenting the registration committee with a dustpan on which a rap-style poem described her entry, complete with sail number, rating and blustery descriptions of her team's prowess.
"The look on her face when we gave her that rubber chicken was priceless," Raven said.
Ricketts' entry topped that submitted by fellow J-29 sailor Missy Salvesen and her team on Mirage, which had been filled out creatively in multicolored crayon by a small child. Ricketts' finish also topped Salvesen's sixth place by 11 seconds.
Another special pair of awards that drew enthusiastic crowd reaction commemorated an accidental starting-line barging incident.
The Saddam Hussein Award for illegally annexing part of the starting line and invading another boat's territory went to racing newcomer Steve Barney, skipper of 10th-place Colleen, while Hughes, whose territory was invaded, received its counterpart.
Best-dressed was the title earned by Lily Walther, who sailed aboard Mike Henderson's C&C 32 Insipid wearing a chic feathered hat and pearls over an interesting black-and-leopard-patterned outfit.
The rest of Henderson's crew contributed to the overall effect by wearing an array of hats, caps and beanies with propellers on top, while the boat itself was adorned with a figure of Bullwinkle Moose at the bow.
"I thought it was a blast," Walther said. "It's my favorite race of the whole year."
Walther explained that Henderson, an enthusiastic, if inexperienced, racer, and his crew may have placed 17th in the race, but definitely won the party.
"Yes, that's the way we usually do it," she said. "We had to really concentrate on keeping Bullwinkle from falling off the bow."
Congratulations to all who took part in an event that provided good racing along with lots of laughs for everyone with its antic approach to the sport we all tend to take too seriously now and then.
EYC LEFTOVER BOWL RESULTS