New York win Hinman Trophy

Team racing in New Orleans

Friday November 15th 2002, Author: Lindy Christofersen, Location: United Kingdom
Fourteen top team racing trios went head to head this past weekend in New Orleans, LA, competing in the U.S. Team Racing Championship for the George R. Hinman.

The Southern Yacht Club, host to the event, along with a team of dedicated volunteers and sponsors, battled challenging weather conditions and a fleet of 90-foot powerboats racing nearby, to pull off a sensational regatta, complete with true southern hospitality.

The weekend event kicked off with a Team Racing Umpire Clinic sponsored by Rolex Watch U.S.A. Sailed in high performance Vanguard 15s, competition was tight throughout the weekend, with the Championship up for grabs until last race of the finals.
In the end, the winner was Team Silver Panda, whose members included Carols Lenz (Somerville, MA), Elizabeth Hall (Tiverton, RI), Pete Levesque (Falmouth, ME), Colin Merrick (Portsmouth, RI), John Cline (Stuart, FL), and team captain, Patrick Hogan (Somerville, MA). In close second was Team WHishbone comprised of Graeme Woodworth (Baltimore, MD), Timothy Wadlow (Brookline, MA), team captain, Timothy Fallon (Somerville, MA), Leigh Woodworth (Baltimore, MD), Erin Largay (Osterville, MA), and Karen Renzulli. (New London, CT).

The finals went the full five races with Silver Panda and WHishbone at a tie after the first four. In the final race, Silver Panda fouled once at the start line and again on the downwind leg. It looked like WHishbone's long quest to win the Trophy (they have been 2nd and 3rd in the past two Hinman’s) would be granted. However Silver Panda’s team captain, Patrick Hogan, was able to gain control of the race at the last mark by pinning Wishbone’s first and second place boats on port tack.

Leading them off to the side of the course and denying them the ability to tack for the finish, Hogan’s team mates gained control of the race. At the finish, all six boats converged, and a professional penalty (resulting in three 360 degree turns instead of the customary two 360s) for WHishbone ensured the win to Silver Panda within a boat length of the finish line. An extremely exciting finish to an incredible regatta. Team New York Yacht Club (winners of the Hinman in 2001 and 1999) beat the New Forest Pirates of Southampton, UK, to come in third.

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