Block Island Race Week - Let's go race already

 

21 june 2017

   
  When the AP flag was taken down to finally mark the start of Block Island Race Week 2017, it was like watching schoolchildren being let out for recess. Sailors who had waited 1 ½ days to go racing rushed down the docks, hopped aboard their boats and couldn’t wait to cast off the lines.

Thick fog that blew in late Saturday and refused to leave forced cancellation of Monday’s racing and delayed Tuesday’s attempt to get things going. At long last, the fog lifted around noon and race committee chairman announced that one start would be held for all courses beginning at 2 p.m.

Block Island Race Week XXVII began in big breeze – 19-22 knots from the southwest – and some sailors admitted afterward it was somewhat of a shock to the system to flip the switch into competition mode. Lincoln Mossop is a fixture at Block Island Race Week, having competed for at least 30 years counting both the on and off years. The Jamestown, Rhode Island resident and his crew sailed his Swan 42, The Cat Came Back, to a nearly three-minute win over the Tripp 43 Settler (Thomas Rich) in the ORC Class, which is a new class at Block Island Race Week.

“Hallelujah, praise the lord, we won!” Mossop said as he left the docks in front of The Oar. “It was really close racing. A bunch of boats got to the top mark at the same time but we got ‘em on the downwind.” Skipper Steve Benjamin and the Spookie crew won their inaugural match race with Hooligan in IRC 1, which consists solely of those TP52 race machines. Spookie led by about 30 seconds when the Naval Academy Varsity Offshore Sailing Team had some trouble with a spinnaker douse. Benjamin said Spookie has been slightly reconfigured in order to rate more closely to Hooligan. “We are really impressed by how well the midshipmen sail that boat. We competed against them at the Annual Regatta and have total respect for their abilities,” Benjamin said.
 
   
 

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