Nixon, Marylanders control 1-design event

Racers from state leading 13 of 19 classes after Day 2

Sailing

May 02, 2004|By Candus Thomson | Candus Thomson,SUN STAFF

A Chesapeake Bay home brew of steady southerly breezes and lumpy seas helped local sailors, led by J/22 skipper Scott Nixon, continue their dominance yesterday of the National Offshore One Design regatta.

Nixon, who entered the day with a comfortable margin, had two fourth-place finishes and a 13th place in a field of 81 boats. With just one race scheduled for today, Maryland sailors are leading 13 of 19 classes.

"I didn't have very good starts, but [crew] Terry Flynn and Marcus Eagan kept us in the game," Nixon said. "We had good tactics and good lanes. We didn't have as good a day as Friday, but we hung on."

The Annapolis sailor has 29 points, five fewer than second-place finisher Henry Filter of Stevensville, who moved up from fourth place. If Nixon wins today, the Annapolis NOOD J/22 title will pass from one St. Mary's College Hall of Fame sailor to another.

"Scott is sailing really well," said Peter McChesney, last year's winner. "St. Mary's has an excellent, excellent sailing program."

Three local sailors swept all three races in their class yesterday - the J/35, the Pearson 30 and the Cal 25 - to take commanding leads into the final day.

The fleet of 292 boats, a record number of entries in a regatta of this type, competed on four courses from the Bay Bridge to Thomas Point.

With that many boats on the water, especially on the J/22 course, "clear air is king," said Nixon, laughing. "You have to hit the [start] line at full speed and sail clear for the first five minutes. Then it's all easy."

As with the first day, the jury dealt with numerous protests.

All classes completed three races, in seas of about 1 foot, with winds that started a 8 mph and built to 15 mph.

Eight are defending their titles; one defender, Alec Cutler of Annapolis, changed from J/105 to J/22.

Almost all of the J/22 competitors are using the NOOD regatta to train for and scout the opposition for the world championship in Annapolis May 17-21. The roster includes J/22 mainstays, plus top performers from other classes. Olympic silver medallist John Bertand of Australia is sailing the three-man boat for the first time in competition and America's Cup and Volvo Ocean Race veteran Chris Larson of Annapolis is returning to the class where he twice won the worlds.

"The fleet has taken a huge step," said McChesney. "There are so many good people out there."

This is the 17th year for the NOOD, a North American circuit, the sixth time it has stopped in Annapolis.

Day 2 results

Top three finishers in each class:

Alberg 30 (seven boats): Rolph Townshend, Severna Park; Charles Currier, Annapolis; Lanny Helms, Columbia.

Beneteau 36.7 (nine boats): Garth Hichens, Annapolis; Wes Siegner, Chevy Chase; Jim Keen, Solomons.

Cal 25 (11 boats): Arthur Libby, Severna Park; Tim Bloomfield, Sherwood Forest; Charles Husar, Annapolis.

Cat 27 (13 boats): Julian and Jennifer Richards, Annapolis; Tom Walsh, Pasadena; John Ebell, Annapolis.

Etchells (15 boats): Sylvan Chaix, Lutherville; Gary Gilbert, Oakton, Va.; Wade Edwards, Concord, Mass.

Henderson 30 (six boats): Liebel Brothers, St. Petersburg, Fla.; Michael Carroll, Tampa, Fla., Neil Rattan, Westport, Conn.

J/22 (81 boats): Scott Nixon, Annapolis; Henry Filter, Stevensville; David Van Cleef, Annapolis.

J/24 (22 boats): Wataru Sakamoto, Wakayama, Japan; Peter Rich, Annapolis; Paul Van Ravenswaay, Annapolis.

J/27 (six boats): Douglas Davies, Stony Brook, N.Y.; Peter Johnson, Orchard Park, N.Y.; Erik Fridley and Deke Johnson, Annapolis.

J/30 (13 boats): Larry and Pat Christy, Annapolis; Bob Rutsch, Chevy Chase; David McConaughy, Newport News, Va.

J/35 (eight boats): Jim Sagerholm and Jerry Christoflel, Annapolis; Peter Scheidt, Highland; Charles Kohlerman III, Brookhaven, Pa.

J/80 (six boats): John Storck, Huntington, N.Y.; Matt Baker, Princeton, N.J.; David Jannetti, Sag Harbor, N.Y.

J/105 (24 boats): Cedric Salvesen, Annapolis; Jim Konigsberg, Fairfax, Va.; Hugh Bethell, Baltimore.

Melges 24 (14 boats): John Pollard, Torquay Devon, U.K.; Bob Dockery, Longboat Key, Fla.; Joe Woods, Torquay Devon, U.K.

Mumm 30 (15 boats): Dan Cheresh, Holland, Mich.; Thomas Ritter, Bloomfield Hills, Mich.; Bruce Lockwood, Groton Long Point, Conn.

Pearson 30 (five boats): Roy Lappalainen, Baltimore; John Blais, Hampton, Va.; Roy Ericson, Annapolis.

Tripp 26 (nine boats): Michele Zinn, Annapolis; George Benisek, Annapolis; Mark Anstey, Arnold.

S/27.9 (12 boats): David Nielson, Annapolis; Bob Fleck, Alexandria, Va., Doug Frye, Spring Lake, Mich.

Star (16 boats): Aaron Serinis, St. Michaels; Jock Kohlhas, Miami; Bert Collins, Annapolis.

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