O'Malley enjoys double fun for AYC showing

SAILING

September 02, 1993|By NANCY NOYES

Annapolis Yacht Club played host to its annual regatta last weekend, for a Saturday fleet of 67, including IMS, PHRF A-1, A-2 and B and J/35 classes, and 74 starters on Sunday.

Chuck O'Malley was among those eligible to compete both days. He and his crew went on to win Saturday's PHRF B class and Sunday's MORC competition.

"It was a nice weekend," O'Malley said. "It was kind of ironic because the wind did a 180 [degree shift] from Saturday to Sunday, but even with that the two days were actually very similar. It was a horse race, a boat speed race, both days."

On Saturday, O'Malley said, the key was to sail the right side of the course going upwind.

"We were pretty lucky, because there were some big shifts before the start of the race, but the wind had pretty much settled down by the PHRF B start," O'Malley said. "We only took two short tacks on the upwind leg, and the downwind leg never really squared off, which kept it interesting because the boats really packed up close around the course all day."

After dueling with rival crews aboard Jervis Dorton's Flying Circus and Richard Altman's Vitality most of the way around the course, O'Malley explained, things got very tight as the trio neared the finish.

"We had good crew work on the last leg, and we played the finish line a little better," O'Malley said. "Flying Circus and Vitality had to make two tacks to finish, and we went all the way to the layline and did it on one tack. We won by the 30 seconds, about the time of a tack."

On Sunday, the left side, where the opposing current was less of a factor, was the way to go, O'Malley said.

"We had a good race on Sunday," he said. "We got out there with [the Lewis/Salvesen team's] Mirage and the two of us pretty much one-design raced it. He helped drag us around the course a lot, and we had to push the boat really hard to keep up with him."

O'Malley described numerous exciting situations as the two boats maintained close cover on one another most of the way. Mirage, a J/29 with a lower handicap rating and faster speed potential, maintained close cover upwind, while O'Malley pushed his boat and crew to stay with Mirage and cover downwind.

"He split from us on the very last leg, otherwise it would have been closer," O'Malley said.

In the final outcome, Rude Awakening took the gun, crossing about 30 seconds ahead of Mirage, which fell to third on correction behind Bob Muller and his team on Stingray.

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