DOC FELLOWS REPORT

The short story on the Doc Fellows this year is that we got the regatta in last Sunday. The long version starts Friday morning….

Chad Atkins and your author left RI for Squam Lake NH to follow up a very favorable ice report from Randy Rice. We weren’t able to confirm his diagnosis because it was too windy to get out of the van. Seriously. Snow-dirt-devils blowing off the lake…. Limbs falling off trees in the parking lot… It was full-on!

Decided it was a perfect afternoon to establish a beach-head at the hotel and work on runners. A bit of a no-brain-er actually!

The next morning the breeze hadn’t moderated much- just enough to make you think that maybe sailing was do-able…. a few boats rigged up and tried it with some success…. a few weren’t so fortunate- there were a few run-aways, I think at least one boat sailed up and off of it’s parking brake-

OK, have to editorialize here a little: While parking brakes on the rear of the steering runners may look pretty slick boats can and will sail over and off of them- furthermore they can pop up and hang on the bobstay, also not good as this will happen when it is windy and rough and you’re going fast. Not the best time to lose the ability to steer. All of my brakes are mounted on the front of my steering runners for these reasons. In addition, if you ever have to drag your boat to a race site (or home from one) you can tie a line to the brake and loop it around your waist and tow your boat very easily. Can’t do this if the brake is in the back. Just sayin’. Food for thought.

Where was I? Oh yes, big breeze and some rough ice on the way to the smooth stuff further out made for some carnage. In the midst of all this our own Eric Anderson was entertaining a film crew from I’m not sure where (stand by for the link when the piece airs) and Harry White took delivery of his new-to-him boat and Scott Earnest showed up with a WI built boat from Dan Hearn’s shop- very nice! Andy Pimental and Roger Livingston were also spotted on the lake- good to see those guys and everyone else!

Later in the day scrub racing went on out on the (very) good ice out on the open part of the lake. Wild racing due to VIOLENT gusts and fast ice…. More carnage…. Scott was fortunate that Chad brings a lot of spares out on the ice….

Back to the hotel where at least 20 iceboaters gathered for dinner and the usual festivities broke out, augmented by the TV crew and Fortier’s niece. Judging by a few slow starters and a few notable no-shows Sunday morning the TV crew was shown a good time. Or vice versa. Enough said…. Fill in your own blanks!

Glad our Regatta Chairman is OK after he found an icy patch of road and ping-ponged between two guardrails on the way in Sunday morning. He and the dog are fine but the car is done…. Time to buy a van, dude!

Not much breeze Sunday but just enough to get 4 races in. Close racing saw Steve Madden in third, Chad Atkins in second and Greg Cornelius one point ahead in first. Well done Greg- he seems to have an extra gear in the light stuff. He may not be able to tell a joke but he sure can sail a DN!

Had to load up and get out in a hurry due to a family-wide influenza outbreak at Chad’s house that he had to attend to.

Thanks to Randy Rice for finding the ice and to everyone who showed up to race! All in all a good time had by all.

Eastern Regional Champs scheduled for this weekend- stay tuned….

James “T” Thieler
DN US 5224
Newport, RI 02840

401-258-6230
t_thieler@yahoo.com

One response

  1. Photos from this weekend can be found here:

    http://clarksail.com/2013/01/06/ice-boats-at-squam-lake/

    Best,
    Willy Clark

    01/07/2013 at 9:55 am