A fleet of 28 varied race boats came out for Sloop Tavern’s Fall Regatta. Good times were had all over the fleet, and three out of five fleets had the top two spots separated by only one point after the day’s racing action.

 Al Hughes offers this report, focusing on the excellent competition within the class where he was sailing the J/105 Creative with Shauna Walgren and crew.

Sailors were surprised by the great conditions for STYC Fall Regatta after forecasts all week had predicted rain and 30 knot winds. It turned out to be a dry day with 7-20 knot southerlies and temperatures over 60 degrees — pretty nice for mid October.

The breeze wasn’t as heavy as forecast, but it was still enough to induce a wipeout or two, including this one for Ross 930, Gaucho. Photo by Jan Anderson.

Six boats made up Class 4, three J/105s — El GatoPeer Gynt, and Creative — along with a J/35, Beneteau 36.7, and a J/99. The race committee ran three races.

The first course was NBWMN; which started off the north end of the Shilshole breakwater, brought boats to a windward mark off the northwest side of Discovery Park, then a fetch from there to the West Point Buoy, downwind to Meadow Point Buoy, and a quick beat to the finish. It turned into a bit of a parade with the southeasterly breeze. Starting line bias made getting on port a premium. The J/99 was just ahead of Creative at the entrance buoy and led the one tack parade to West Point. Jibe set at West Point was the call, and both Creative and Peer Gynt had good sets. Peer Gynt eventually rolled Creative on the run to Meadow Point. On the beat back to the finish they let Creative get free of their cover and, wouldn’t you know it, Creative nipped them at the finish.

J/105s Creative and Peer Gynt enjoyed terrific battles all day. Photo by Jan Anderson.

The second race was NERN, with the long leg bringing sailors north to Spring Beach and back. It was a similar start setup, played best this time by Peer Gynt. The jibe set for the long run north to Spring Beach was also familiar. Peer Gynt extended with better speed and tactics, getting out of the foul incoming tide in the building puffy breeze. No one in our class had any answers on the beat back to the finish in the now 20-knot wind and Peer Gynt won by a good distance.

Borge Ellingsen’s Kirby 25, Midnight Escape, charges back from Spring Beach. Photo by Jan Anderson.

Race 3 was a short lap around Shilshole Bay with the course NBMN. It was a definite fight for class honors. Peer Gynt and Creative started next to each other, but Peer Gynt just had a slightly better gear and led around the windward mark. For the first time that day, the course called for bear away spinnaker sets. Peer Gynt did better and led down the run.  Creative went a bit farther west and was able to close up to an overlap at Meadow Point, but Peer Gynt held them off by sailing better through the rest of the small boats while not letting Creative out of a good cover. Peer Gynt closed out the class win and was second overall.

J/99 One Life made their presence felt all day among their competitive class. Photo by Jan Anderson.

Congratulations and great work team Peer Gynt. Good to see El Gato in the mix and improving with every race. Another shout out to the crew on One Life, the J/99, who also were making their presence felt all day. Thanks to the STYC Race Committee for putting on a good regatta.

Photos courtesy of Jan Anderson.