Big crowd heads for Key West


January 15, 1995|By NANCY NOYES

More than 200 skippers from 13 countries and 34 states have registered for Mount Gay/Yachting Race Week at Key West, which begins tomorrow and runs through Friday, and is expected to temporarily increase the island city's population by at least 2,000 people.

A large contingent of Annapolis-based sailors will race, and some Race Committee types will help manage the three courses.

On the Grand Prix course, headed by former Naval Academy sailor Peter Craig, will be Pete Sarelas and Taran Teague, among others, while on the other handicap-division course, headed by Brad Dellenbaugh, will be Wayne Bretsch, Harry Keith and Mary Coan. Eileen Monius and Irv Abshire will work on the Melges 24 course.

Local skippers and boats taking part include: Leonard Rittenberg of Annapolis, sailing his Swan 45 Midnight Sun, and Charlie Scott and Ron Steele of Annapolis, contending in the Melges 24 class with Fred and Twin Spirit, respectively.

Also in the enormous fleet will be Trevor Underwood of Annapolis with his J/35 Inside Trader; J/22 World Champion Chris Larson of Annapolis at the helm of the Mumm 36 No Problem, sailing against George Collins of Gibson Island and Gary Jobson of Annapolis aboard Collins' Moxie; and John White of Severna Park and his unnamed B-25, with which he took top honors in the PHRF B division in CBYRA's 1994 High Point competition.

At Key West, the Mumm 36, Melges 24 and J/80 classes will sail one-design, while the rest of the fleet competes under IMS or PHRF. Three race courses on the waters off Key West will accommodate the fleet.

The size of the Melges 24 class has surpassed all expectations, with 65 boats registered to compete at what has been designated that class' Midwinter Championship, double the turnout for this increasingly popular class over last year's numbers. The Mumm 36 class, which made its racing debut in 1994 with 11 boats, will have 16 starters, also the largest number of these swift competitors ever to meet on a single starting line.

Winter seminars slated

The 1995 series of free winter seminars at Fawcett Boat Supplies at City Dock in Annapolis is under way. Coming up as speakers/topics are: Tuesday, "Foul Weather Gear for All Conditions and New Breathable Foul Weather Gear" from Henri Lloyd's Tom Healy, and on Jan. 24 "Complete Dressing for Sea, (( New Breathable Foul Weather Gear, plus Boots, Gloves and Bags," from Douglas Gill's Carl Moser.

All seminars are in Fawcett's store and begin at 5:30 p.m. Reservations are not required, but a call ahead to confirm is encouraged: (410) 267-8681, (800) 456-9151.

* The West Marine Store at Hillsmere and Forest drives in Annapolis will conduct a series of free seminars, including "The Seven Most Important Knots" with Bill Shuman of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, Wednesday, 7 p.m.; and the "Avon Inflatable Clinic," Jan. 25, 7 p.m., presented by Norman Bender of Avon Marine. Seminars require no reservations. For information, call (410) 268-0129.

* West River Sailing Club's winter seminar series starts Saturday with a presentation by The Nature Conservancy, "Preserving the Chesapeake's Rivers." Seminars are free and open to the public. They begin at 2 p.m. at the clubhouse in Galesville. Seminars are preceded by a chili lunch. For information, call Donna Schlegel, (410) 867-2775.

Future winners?

The Severn Sailing Association's January 1995 newsletter has announced a list of the club's 1995 trophy winners. I suspect it's really not prescience, but rather a typo.

In any event, the winners are: Phil Richmond, Jim Laudeman Service Award; Bob Scharf, Standing Race Committee Award; Jim Urban, USSA Sportsmanship Award; Elliot Oldak, Comet Fleet Champion; Curt Wagner, Day Sailer Fleet Champion; Roger Ewart Smith, I-14 Fleet Champion; Pete McChesney, J/22 Fleet Champion; Steve Hankin, J/24 Fleet Champion; Bob Tan, Laser Fleet Champion; Fred Mertes, Lightning Fleet Champion; Bryan Fishback, Snipe Fleet Champion; Peter Gleitz, Soling Fleet Champion; Jonathan Bartlett, Star Fleet Champion; Ed Hoyt, Tempest Fleet Champion; and Mark Saunders, Thistle Fleet Champion.

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