2013 DN Centrals Regatta Report

The folks in the Midwest actually pulled this one off! In spite of a difficult forecast and it being early in the season (or late in the year, depending on how you look at it) they found a lake and got us all out on it in fine style. Well done y’all!

The lake was Lake St. Claire, the town was Clinton Township (I think it was anyway- Chad was navigating so I wasn’t paying attention) and the turnout was good- But I’m getting ahead of myself….

The NEIYA was going to be represented by your author along with Chad Atkins, Eric Anderson, Steve Madden (making his first trek west in awhile- go Steve! Good to see you west of PA again), Jack Goritski, Hal Scaff , and Louise Racine from north of the border in Kingston, Ontario. (Fun Fact!!! Ontario is a province in Canada- which is a whole ‘nuther country!) Oliver Moore stayed east to participate in a triathlon of sorts….

Chad and I piled into the TRIPDT (Team RI Pilot Delivery Truck) and hit the road Thursday night. Christmas was OVER at the Atkins house as the tree was already on the curb and the re-gifting had begun- His four year old daughter gave me a toothbrush (Was she trying to tell me something?) but noted that I could only borrow it and had to give it back soon. Of course I agreed and with that we hit the road! Twelve hours later the sun was coming up and we were checked into the hotel and rigged up for the Holiday classic- a warm-up regatta held on Friday. Not much wind but a good (if sleepy) time had by all- Chad showed his light air skills by taking second with yours truly hot on his heels in third. Report here: http://iceboating.net/node/3882

After a Thai dinner (What else do you eat in Detroit?) and a solid night of sleep it was time for the real show- it was warm, sunny and the drifts were melting and sticky…. Staying in clear ice was key. The first race was won by some guy in a black and yellow boat and then the wind did The Big Fizzle and racing was done for the day. The folks at the local yacht club (the North Star YC?)hosted a great get-together for everyone Saturday night- many thanks for having us! As far as I know nobody was arrested or hospitalized but we all had fun anyway.

Sunday dawned warm and calm, the ice was soft and the drifts had melted down a bit overnight- a few people called it a day and hit the road but they missed out on some good sailing! In a light breeze that veered right all day long the committee did a great job getting four Silver Fleet Races and three Gold Fleet races in and the regatta was in the books! Racing was close- Eric kept his finishes in single digits to take 5th place, I managed a third, and multiple world champion Ron Sherry was beaten out for first by a skinny kid who looks kind of like him named Griffin Sherry. I’d like to say that his light weight was key to his victory but he clearly knows how to sail the boat. Congrats Griffin- now go eat something!

Many thanks to all who made it happen- Kent Baker and his wife Erica, Loretta Rehe, Deb Whitehorse, Eric Lind, Ron Sherry and whoever I’m missing…. you know who you are and we are all grateful!

Results here: http://www.iceboatracing.com/2013/centrals/2013%20DN%20Centrals%2012-29.pdf

We loaded the van in record time and bolted back to RI. Got Chad home in time for his daughter’s birthday on Monday but I still haven’t returned the toothbrush.

Stay tuned for the next one! Doc Fellows, Eastern Regionals, NA’s all on the calendar…. There is some cold weather on the way….

THINK ICE!!

James “T” Thieler DN US 5224

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