Ramrod back in charge
Mother nature delivered exactly as promised, and perhaps even more so on Friday, when a passing front brought winds of just under 20 knots and waves up to 5ft to the 2013 Farr 30 World Championship fleet. Boats and bodies were bruised and beaten, but those able to deal with the lumpy seas and puffy wind still smiled when they hit the dock.
“We’ve only done one regatta with the Farr 30 going into the Worlds, and thanks to a group of great sailors around me we’re going pretty well,” said leader Rod Jabin. “We’ve got a solid boat underneath us and a great sail package, so whether we win or lose, it’s all down to us.”
Jabin downplays his accomplishments, but the newcomer’s just being modest; the Annapolis-based boatyard owner’s Farr 30 Ramrod has been trading the lead with two-time World Champ Groovederci all week long, and he finished today with a slim two point lead over Barking Mad, with another two points back to Groovederci’s Demourkas. “It will be a full scramble tomorrow; hopefully we’ll come out looking good,” Jabin said.
Dr Harald Bruening’s Topas team from Germany sits 8 points behind Dutch expat and new Newport resident Peter Taselaar’s Bliksem in the race for fifth place, while New Yorker Norm Dean’s Just Plain Nutz lies 21 points behind them. The teams would seem to have nothing in common at first glance, but the winner of this three-way tussle takes bragging rights home to Sydney, Australia come Christmas time.
That’s because three Australian cousins are racing on the three boats, all separated by just a few points. Bliksem has Pauly Atkins aboard as trimmer, while cousins David Chapman and Jeremy Wilmot call tactics on Topas and Just Plain Nutz respectively. “When I go home and see my nana for Christmas, she’ll ask us which cousin is the best sailor,” said Chapman, who lies just 7 points behind Atkins. “This is the first time we’ve all raced against each other in ages, so we’ve got something to prove!” he said, only half-joking.
With up to 25 knots and boat-breaking waves possible, Race Officer Peter Reggio says he may decide to race the boats inside Narragansett Bay for the two final races of the Championship. Reggio will make the decision by 0800, with racing to begin by 1100 and two races to follow either inside the bay or in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
Full results here