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Party Time: Commodore’s Celebration Saturday, May 18

Chef Dionot

Chef Dionot

Reservations are now closed for this big event, with almost 90 people signed up. If you failed to register in time and would like to go, contact Mike Ferring to see if we can squeeze you in.
Mike and Maryellen Ferring invite you to the year’s big party, the Commodore’s Celebration.
When: Saturday evening, May 18, with wine and beer beginning at 6pm, dinner at 7pm, and awards about 7:30
Where9382 E Bahia Dr,  Scottsdale
What: Wine tasting, gourmet dinner (see menu below) and much mingling with your sailing buddies
How Much: $49 for adults, $19 for children; cash bar
Why: Honor winners and workers and to bring on the new AYC Board of Directors
Dress Code: Informal
Who: Kids and guests welcome

Intriguing idea: Take a big space in North Scottsdale, sprinkle in some boats and collector cars, add true gourmet food… and make it stirring.

Rear Commodore Bob Whyte has engaged executive chef Pascal Dionot to prepare the dinner, which Chef Dionot says will include flavors of both classic European items and the Sonoran desert.

Last year's party. Photo: Mike Ferring

Last year’s party. Photo: Mike Ferring

Chef Dionot was first trained in France, Germany and Spain before heading to the U.S. His background includes Executive Chef positions at several notable Washington, D.C. fine dining restaurants, including the historic Hay-Adams Hotel, the Georgetown Club, and Restaurant 2941 in Northern Virginia. Pascal went on to develop and teach the professional culinary program at l’Academie de Cuisine in Bethesda, Maryland for 18 years before relocating to Scottsdale where he founded Classic Cooking Academy in 2006.

Expected Buffet Menu
Mixed Greens Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette, Carmelized Pecans, and Blue Cheese, Grilled Vegetables, Rolls and Butter
Chesapeake Bay Crab Cakes with Jicama Slaw or Short Ribs Braised in Red Wine on Sweet, Creamy Polenta
Desserts include Chocolate Mesquite Brownies with Vanilla Ice Cream, Assorted Fruit Tarts plus a Coffee Station
Also: There will be a vegetarian option

Wine Tasting Event at 6pm will be hosted by Phoenix Wine of Scottsdale

Here’s a list of people who have registered to attend the Commodore’s Celebration

Some of the classic cars that will share our space.

Some of the classic cars that will share our space.

 

The cars:
1964 Pontiac Bonneville Convertible
2005 Panoz Esperante
2007 Eagle Roadster (street legal, open wheel)
1957 Corvette resto-mod with a ZO6 engine
1982 Delorean
1969 Lotus Elan
Tesla roadster

AYC Board Election Underway

The election is underway for the 2013-2014 AYC Board of Directors. Most members have received an email notifying them to vote online, the first year this convenient method has been available. Nineteen members chose to receive mailed, paper ballots. The benefits of electronic voting are huge. It’s much less expensive and time-consuming for the club and it’s easier for members, taking only seconds and not requiring a 46-cent postage stamp.

Here are the nominees:

Cindy Pillote

Cindy Pillote

One-Year Terms
Commodore: Cindy Pillote
Vice Commodore: Peter Lehrach
Rear Commodore: Christina Campo
Fleet Captain: Greg Woodcock
Cruising Captain: Ralph Vatalaro

Two-Year Terms
Membership Director: Andrea Love
Junior Staff Commodore: Mike Ferring

Continuing on the board are Emory Heisler, who will become Senior Staff Commodore, and Thom Dickerson, Membership Director. The board will also choose a Treasurer (Tony Chapman has agreed to continue) and Secretary (we’re open to suggestions).

Electronic voting will continue until Monday, May 13 at 6pm MST. Paper ballots must be mailed to Mike Ferring, 525 W Monte Vista Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85003 postmarked May 9 or earlier or a ballot may be brought by the voting member in person at the time and place designated for the election. The votes will be counted at 6pm MST on Tuesday, May 14, at the Caddy Shack@Rolling Hills.

 

 

Taking America’s Cup to the Max

The cup is coming but what got us there?

AC72For the April monthly meeting, Philip Freedman offers his view of America’s Cup 34 and what it takes to compete for the sport’s oldest trophy. The meeting is at 7 pm, Tuesday, April 9, at the Caddy Shack @ Rolling Hills, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe. Visitors are welcome.

A meteor has hit the America’s Cup and the dinosaurs have disappeared. The oldest sports trophy has become of age. In one of the biggest sport upgrades in history, the America’s Cup has roared into the 21st century and you better use a fast shutter speed to take a shot. This summer in San Francisco Bay, the 34th America’s Cup will be defended against three countries wanting to take it out of the U.S. An estimated 600,000 will watch the competition from the banks of San Francisco Bay. Never before has the America’s Cup been sailed in a bay rather than in the ocean where few could see.

These are not just sailboats, but 72-foot-long catamarans with 13-story hard-wing masts that go twice the spend of the wind and rise out of the water onto small foils. Their crew of 11 not only wears heart monitors, life jackets and helmets, but will take physical requirements to the limits.

So come spend a fun evening and hear how college, youth sailing and the twelve meters got us to where we are today. Phil warns: This will be fun.

Phil Freedman is an AYC member and longtime sailor who fielded the entry Betsy Ross for the 1990 America’s Cup challenge.

The Sailing Life of Andrew Campbell

Andrew Campbell sailing a Star on the US Sailing Team.

Andrew Campbell sailing a Star on the US Sailing Team.

Olympian and 10-time national champion Andrew Campbell looks at the big sailing picture. Boil it down to something like this: explore and enjoy. Sure, there’s a lot we can learn about wind shifts and boat handling and that kind of thing, but a lot of the advice he offered the AYC monthly meeting on Tuesday, March 12 was bigger than that.

Here were his bullet points:

  • Clear air (get in it)
  • Practice like you mean it
  • Even when it’s uncomfortable
  • Sail weird boats
  • Sail with old friends
  • Make new friends (he got to meet President George W. Bush)
  • Sail against the best
  • Study and learn every chance you get
  • Sail with lots of people
  • Sail with kids (You never know what will inspire them)
  • Sail in new places

The big point is that you learn through these broad experiences, picking up something about sailing or just about life itself. Or you just have a good time with friends.

Whoa. Is this the the message from a cutthroat, world-class sailor? From a calm, focused one, it is.

Andrew is a 10-time national champion at the youth, high school, collegiate levels. Racing in the Laser and Star class, he competed on the Olympic Class World Cup level during 10 years on the US Sailing Team. He won the 2007 Pan Am Games, represented the United States at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, and was ranked #4 in the World in the Star class in 2011. Now Andrew’s professional sailing and coaching experience has set him up to expand into big boats and match racing as well as writing for sailing publications.

Sailing Champion Andrew Campbell at the AYC monthly meeting.

Sailing Champion Andrew Campbell at the AYC monthly meeting.

March Meeting: Sailing Coach Andrew Campbell

Andrew Campbell sailing a Star on the US Sailing Team.

Andrew Campbell sailing a Star on the US Sailing Team.

Fresh off an Olympic Star campaign, Andrew Campbell is a busy sailing coach and tactician… and our March Monthly Meeting Speaker. Would you like a boatload of racing tips? Andrew’s your guy. He’ll speak at 7 pm, Tuesday, March 12, at the Caddy Shack @ Rolling Hills, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe.

His bio on the Andrew Campbell website describes his work as a tactician on the Farr 40 Nightshift, his coaching, and much more. It says, “As a professional sailor, coach and writer, Andrew draws from experience in Olympic and top international sailboat racing. He is a ten-time national champion at the youth, high school, collegiate levels. Racing in the Laser and Star class, he competed on the Olympic Class World Cup level during 10 years on the US Sailing Team. He won the 2007 Pan Am Games, represented the United States at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, and was ranked #4 in the World in the Star class in 2011. Andrew’s professional sailing and coaching experience has enabled him to expand into big boats and match racing as well as writing for sailing publications.”

AndyCampbell

Andrew Campbell

AYC welcomes nonmembers at our events, including the monthly meetings.

What happens on starts when there aren’t five boats in a fleet?

AYC has had a long-standing policy that if takes five boats to make a racing fleet, while also saying that a fleet with fewer boats may request its own start. After an online discussion, Fleet Captain Greg Woodcock has offered this further explanation:

Greg Woodcock is the Fleet Captain, in charge of keeping all the AYC floating stock in good repair and leading the fleets to races year around. Greg has been PHRF Non-Spin Fleet Captain (and champ) but now races a Santana 20.

Greg Woodcock is the Fleet Captain, in charge of keeping all the AYC floating stock in good repair and leading the fleets to races year around. Greg has been PHRF Non-Spin Fleet Captain (and champ) but now races a Santana 20.

Race Committee should take a customer-supplier (racer-race committee) attitude. I think this is already taking place. The fleets should feel free to make requests to the race committee and the race committee should accommodate requests when they make sense and comply with the RRS and SI.

So, if there are two fleet captains who want to start together, just ask the race committee. Maybe you want to do starts with a lot of boats on the line; if the fleets agree, I’m all for it. If you want to sail all triangles or all windward/leeward, let the race committee know.

What about starting one-boat fleets by themselves? I discussed this issue with the LP Portsmouth fleet captain, for example, and he said he didn’t want to start by himself. I discussed it with the Thistle fleet captain, who said putting a single Portsmouth boat with them did not cause a problem in the past. I hope that continues to work out and we can do the same with other fleets. (Portsmouth needs to recruit more active racers though!)

More starts means longer start sequences. At Lake Pleasant, it’s 10 minutes for two additional starts—and most likely just the first start of the day. After that, starts should occur as each fleet completes the course. At Tempe Town Lake, it would be an additional three minutes for an additional start. I don’t think the fleets that want to sail by themselves would view this as much of a downside. If you really want to shorten the start sequence, just find some fleet captains who want to start together and let the race committee know. If you want to make it permanent, you could even put it in your fleet rules.

This additional thought from Commodore Mike Ferring: If your fleet is running into conflicts with boats from other fleets, please try to work out the issues with the individuals. Some of the competitors are inexperienced or unfamiliar with the Racing Rules of Sailing and may not know that they shouldn’t barge at the start or don’t know about the three-boat-length rule at the marks. Let’s bring them up to speed so they can mix it up with the rest of us (who may know the rules but push them)!

 

LPSC Will Not Dye Lake Pleasant Green

Because we don’t live in Chicago, don’t expect Lake Pleasant to be dyed green for St. Patrick’s Day. But Lake Pleasant Sailing Club (LPSC) can expect a great day of sailing and an even greater raft up on March 9-10.

The day will start with a Pot-of-Gold Treasure Hunt on Lake Pleasant. Ten numbered pots of gold will be hidden on the shore around the lake. You’ll be given 10 clues to help you find the treasure. In order to confirm your success, you must take a digital picture of  each pot-of-gold. The boat  crew with the most pictures will win a prize. In case of a tie, your cruise directors will think of some blarney-inspired way to declare one winner at the raft up that follows. Watch for more details on the LPSC website.

At 4 pm the Paynes and the Goldmans are hoping you’ll join them for a fun, blarney-filled raft-up in a location yet to be announced. Be ready to party hearty with the LPSC Irish and/or Irish wannabees. They’re planning a contest to test your knowledge of Irish trivia and a limerick competition. Please bring an appetizer or dessert to share (the more Irish-themed the better). Please plan to enjoy dinner on your own boat. Watch Meetup, the website and email for more details. Of course, all AYC members are invited to join LPSC at this event.

—Rhonda Brewer

AYC Volunteers Clean SR-74

Blue bags collect trash on the side of Carefree Highway.

Blue bags collect trash on the side of Carefree Highway.

Thanks to 10 volunteers who did their part to maintain AYC’s commitment to the Adopt-a-Highway program.

In 2½ hours on a Saturday morning they filled nearly 50 bags with trash along a ¾ mile stretch of SR-74. The day was complemented by beautiful weather, several hot air balloons landing nearby, and a good lunch courtesy of AYC.

If you’re interested in helping on a future clean up, please contact organizer Peter Lehrach.

The crew (left to right): Martin Lorch, Thom Dickerson, Jeff Sloan, Juan Gagna, Jake Wease, Paul Eyssautier, and Kyle Clark. Volunteers not pictured: Pierce Cunningham, Michael Parker, and Peter Lehrach (who took the picture)

The crew (left to right): Martin Lorch, Thom Dickerson, Jeff Sloan, Juan Gagna, Jake Wease, Paul Eyssautier, and Kyle Clark. Volunteers not pictured: Pierce Cunningham, Michael Parker, and Peter Lehrach (who took the picture).

This is the right time for crew to join AYC

If you crew, we’d like you to join the Arizona Yacht Club.

It’s not just for boat owners, but for crew as well and right now you can join for the initiation fee ($150) and half the annual dues ($62.50), because the AYC year is half over. (You’ll need to renew your membership for $125 next summer.) Click this link to sign up!

Why join? To support this great sport, to make sure we have the boats, marks, programs and events for you to enjoy! Don’t leave it to others—join in.

Peter Lehrach crews for me (Commodore Mike Ferring) on our J/80 and he’s not only become a member, but he’s been active on the AYC board of directors and organizes our highway cleaning program. Here’s what he has to say:

 

Peter Lehrach is the AYC Secretary and a new member of the club. He moved to the area in 2011 after competing in various boats and regattas in the East and South. Peter crews on Commodore Mike Ferring's J/80.

Peter Lehrach is the AYC Secretary and a new member of the club. He moved to the area in 2011 after competing in various boats and regattas in the East and South. Peter crews on Commodore Mike Ferring’s J/80.

The only boat I’ve ever owned was a Sunfish more than 30 years ago. Yet I love sailing; I love racing. And I’ve done a lot of it.

I’ve had the privilege of crewing on other people’s boats extensively on the East, West, and Gulf coasts and several lakes and rivers across America. I’ve also had international racing experiences in or to Mexico, the Caribbean, Bermuda, and England. I learned very early in my crewing career that if you have some skill, cheerfully volunteer to assist in maintenance, and (most importantly) reliably show up then further opportunities and referrals easily come your way. In many ways I had it dialed in perfectly: I got to do my favorite activity, at little personal expense, and I was appreciated by the boat owner. Our relationship was a benefit to both of us. Until recently however, I never joined a yacht club. In hindsight, that was wrong.

I rationalized that only boat owners need to be members. I thought my use of yacht club facilities (launches, showers, bars, restaurants, etc.), purchase of club-branded shirts, participation in racing, social, and educational events were all necessary for “my” boat owners to take advantage of their yacht club privileges and any personal benefit I received was a show of appreciation from the boat owners.

I now realize that while I had been giving and taking with the boat owner, my relationship with the yacht club had been one-way. I further realized that yacht clubs are the community that enables my favorite activity. You see, without a club there is no racing as it takes more than one boat to have a race. It takes more than one boat crew to have a social event. It takes several interested sailors to attract an educational speaker.

Because of the Arizona Yacht Club, we can get our feet wet in the desert even when there is snow and ice on boats elsewhere in the country. How many people can say that? The racing is well run and competitive, the race committee boats and marks are of high quality, and the opportunities to network and learn with likeminded sailors is unique for the area.

Chances are, if you are a long-time crew, you’ve thought about joining the AYC and then rationalized it away as I once did. For those who have since become members, thank you! If not, please reconsider: AYC needs your membership to strengthen our desert sailing community. Compared to other places I’ve sailed, AYC member financial obligations are downright cheap. The reciprocal privileges are fantastic. Participation on committees and helping with events are personal growth opportunities and will make you feel good. I know I do.

Thank you for considering my message and I’ll see you on the water,
Peter Lehrach AYC Secretary
AYC Member since 2012 (602.741.2016)

Southern California Racing Calendar

Here’s a link to the 2013 calendar for the Southern California Yachting Association, which includes the Arizona Yacht Club.

Click to link to the full publication.

Click image to link to the full publication.

Plans for new, giant TTL wind twister?

Martin Lorch spotted this interesting story in the Business Journal: plans for a new, huge facility on the south shore of Tempe Town Lake. The million square foot campus for State Farm insurance would employ 5,00-7,000. Good news? Possible sailors, I guess.

Annie Gardner Applauds On-The-Edge America’s Cup

Annie Gardner shows off her new AYC polo shirt after speaking at the March meeting.

Annie Gardner shows off her new AYC polo shirt after speaking at the February meeting.

Champion sailor Annie Gardner told the AYC February meeting that the coming America’s Cup will be the most amazing in the Cup’s long history. Go watch it, she said, because it may not happen again.

Annie ran down the entries, agreeing with most AC watchers that Emirates New Zealand has the inside track to take the Cup in September’s competition in San Francisco Bay. The team is ahead of the other three entries in preparing its boat and is getting more essential practice time in Auckland.

She was the expert TV commentator at the first European AC 45 races and got a ride with the French entry with Loïck Peyron at the helm. She said he had never capsized a mult-hull despite multiple trips around the world in difficult conditions—hadn’t capsized one until he flipped the Energy Team boat in the heavy wind in Plymouth. That’s the sort of challenge these boats present. (Peyron has sailed the Artemis AC72 boat and says, “These are boats that aren’t that wide or that big, but…have a very powerful ‘engine.’ To get an idea of what I mean, it’s a bit like putting a V8 or V12 engine on a go-kart. So it is no easy matter making use of all that power.” And he adds, “Of all the boats I have sailed on, she is the trickiest.”)

You may remember Annie from her role on America³, the women’s America’s Cup contender. She was chosen for the team from 700 applicants and sailed as navigator on the boat. Her qualifications for the team: A Silver Medal in Olympic Boardsailing exhibition in the 1984 games and a host of national and international Hobie cat and boardsailing titles. She’s still an active sailor (and skier; she was on her way to Utah to ski), sailing with her fiance on a NACRA 17 multi-hull.

AnnieGardner-ws

Annie Gardner talks multi-hulls at the February AYC meeting. Photos: Mike Ferring

 

Active Catalina 22 Fleet and C22 Tuning Tips

One of the fleet's stalwarts, Bob Worrall.

One of the fleet’s stalwarts, Bob Worrall.

The Catalina 22 fleet was looking thin last summer, until Steve and Christina Campo jumped in, gave it CPR, and found a bunch of willing participants. Result? Ten entries for the Birthday Regatta and a fleet that’s looking anything but weak.

Stan Ferris produces a newsletter for the fleet and distributes it by email. The latest includes some great tuning tips from fleet captain Steve Campo, who’s generous with his advice (and still runs out front). Click here to see the newsletter.

 

Humboldt Bay To Trinidad Race Weekend Northern California

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AROUND THE MARKS
by Stephen Buck
The Beaufort scale defines winds of 22-27 knots as a strong breeze and 28-33 as a near gale. Those were the conditions facing the five starters of the 2012 Trinidad race. The Trinidad Race is the annual two day round trip from Eureka with an overnight on the mooring balls at Trinidad harbor. Race Committee for the Trinidad Race was a shared duty for the Commodore and Vice- Commodore for the two day race. As such, trips to Trinidad were a pleasant requirement of the job. I pulled the Saturday watch at the finish line. Strategically, the replica Trinidad Head lighthouse gave a good perspective of Prisoner Rock and the bell buoy which constituted the finish line. I settled in with binoculars and commenced scanning the horizon about 1300.
The effect of the wind on the ocean was striking. The northwest swells appeared to pile up onto Pilot Rock like a stone in a stream. There was a fair amount of “popcorn” and spindrift evident.
At about 165′ above sea level, the “distance to the horizon” formula yields an answer of about 15 miles. A sail would show farther than the horizon. A sail, in fact, appeared on the horizon a bit after I settled in. Meanwhile, I could just make out another sail approaching from the coast side. Garrett Coonrod on the Choate “Free Energy” chose the outer route making a long tack away from the coast. The Melges 24 “Flash Point” skippered by Court Roberts chose to battle crab pots and brave the surf near shore. With the stiff resistance of current and swells, the two leaders approached Trindad from the different tacks. To my amazement, the two sailboats reached the finish area at the same time. The race was decided on tactics, with Flash Point claiming the Starboard Tack rule to force Free Energy to yield the line. Free Energy was immediately blown down wind and recovered nicely to finish 50 seconds later for second place for day one.
While those relieved crews were settling in, I resumed searching the sea south. In the next hour, another sail approached from the seaward side. “Ru- Bun”, piloted by Curt Brown, was making a run for the finish. Taking a good line, the crew and boat slid by the north side of the bell buoy to finish just under seven hours for a third place finish.
Two boats were still out and I resumed scanning. A cell phone call revealed that John Bradley and
Hank Pierson on the F-31 catamaran, “Cathy Ray II”, broke a key component and retired earlier from the race to return to Eureka. That left Doby Class with brand new crew, David, still on the course. Patience was rewarded and Doby had taken the coast route to appear near the surf line. The shore is the sailboats natural enemy and from my vantage appeared to imperil the Muse. Later Doby later assured me that was not the case. The progress of the Muse was opposed by the considerable south setting current and NW swells. Eventually, the sea yielded to Doby and crew David to see them finish 9 hours and 37 minutes after starting the race. It should be noted that David thoroughly enjoyed the trip.
The wind persisted into Sunday and saw three boats finish the second day. Doby Class won day two on corrected time. Garret Coonrod finished first with an actual time of just over three hours but corrected to a third. Curt Brown and crew took second place both actual and corrected. Court Roberts chose the overland route to return due to the conditions. Everyone returned for a race rehash and several pots of chili at the clubhouse.
UPCOMING EVENTS
Now it is time to look forward to the Redwood Regatta on September 1 & 2. There will be signup sheets at the July Potluck for the various roles required to make the RR a successful event. Thanks in advance for helping.
Don’t forget the July 4th Poker Run coming up. Put your best poker face on and get out there!

Photo By: Court Roberts

Race Weekend Survey Results

Here’s the headline from the results of a survey about the number of race weekends racers would like for Lake Pleasant: Five. Five weekends rather than four.

There were 44 responses to the survey conducted July 5-9 and announced on the AYC Yahoo list. Of the 44, 28 said they entered a boat in the Lake Pleasant series last season. Of the rest, 12 crewed and five did not participate.

Two-thirds of the respondents said they preferred a five-weekend series for spring and fall. They drove home the message when we asked what they would do if the series were reduced from five weekends to four:

  • 10% of the respondents said they would participate more
  • 14% said they would participate less
  • 24% said they would participate the same but like it more
  • 52% said they would participate the same amount but like it less.

We also asked about interest in giving prizes for people who were able to race only on Saturdays. The response was lukewarm, with a rating of just under three on a five-point scale. However, since awards for Saturday-only participants wouldn’t affect those who race on both days, it might still be a viable idea.

—Mike Ferring, Commodore