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2017 Starts with REGATTAS

The 2107 season starts with TWO regattas. On January 21, ladies take the helm in the RUTH BEALS CUP. This year we will be celebrating the founder of the AYC on Lake Pleasant. As of January 9th, 12 boats have already signed up for the event—this a significant challenge for the Cup! With a mixed fleet of boats in a handicap race on a new course, we will definitely see some very interesting and tactical sailing.

CUP DETAILS AND REGISTRATION

The Second event of 2017 is the LEUKEMIA CUP/First in the Nation/Birthday Regatta. Also on Lake Pleasant, this is always by far the largest and most complete event of the year.

Many completely new events and features have been added to this year’s regatta making it a very complete weekend. For the first time, racing will be mainly handicap racing (not the usual fleets); the Vipers are back in full swing; a new Club Challenge for cruisers has been added; a full day SUP event on the north ramp beach; we have chartered ‘The Phoenix’ for a Saturday afternoon Regatta Cruise for friends and family; Saturday and Sunday will see  the first “Lunch on the Lake” (a pontoon boat with your pre-ordered lunch will deliver it to you!); many new sponsors and participants; wide distribution print media (full page newspaper ads, full color ad in Trends Magazine); promotional support from the SCYA and so much more! And yes, there will be a giant tent at Spinnaker Point courtesy of H2OMG—the hydroplane races held the weekend after us.

REGATTA DETAILS AND REGISTRATION

 

January Meeting: Eco Vigilantes Protect Endangered Species

Consider this sentence from the NY Times: “Sea Shepherd… describes itself as an eco-vigilante group, flies a variation of the Jolly Roger on its ships and often cites the motto, ‘It takes a pirate to catch a pirate.’” Sea Shepherd tries to stop bad guys from wiping out endangered ocean species or nail them for illegal fishing.

Sea Shepherd's David Hance

Sea Shepherd’s David Hance

David Hance is the Chief Operating Officer of this group and he’ll be our January meeting speaker. He’ll brief us on their efforts in the northern Sea of Cortez, where they’re working with the Mexican government and other groups to protect the critically endangered Vaquita Porpoise, which they estimate now numbers just 60.

In fact, Sea Shepherd has just stopped six fishing boats illegally fishing in the Sea of Cortez, turning them over to Mexican authorities.

The meeting is Tuesday, January 10, beginning at 7pm (but arrive early for dinner). Monthly meetings are held at the Caddy Shack @ Rolling Hills Golf Course, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85281-1205 (map) and both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

A shot of the crew of one of Sea Shepherd's "vigilante" ships.

A shot of the crew of one of Sea Shepherd’s “vigilante” ships.

And then, they became pirates.

It happens every year—at a time of goodwill and peace on earth, normally pleasant AYC sailors release their inner Kraken and go for the things in shiny wrappings. The 2016 Party was no different and for all who were there, you can be a pirate till race season starts again. If you missed it, put down the eye patch, fold the Jolly Roger and promise you will never miss the party again.

Commodore Bruce Andress started the evening dressed in his signature “Santa on Vacation” outfit. New club members were welcomed followed by a well-received presentation of things to come in 2017. Bill and Barbara Cunningham presented a stunningly long line of new burgees they had collected over the summer. Thank you!

The Trophy presentation followed with the giant Governor’s Cup going to Paul Miachika and the brand new AYC Governor’s Cup rodeo buckles to Mike Hester (Monohull) and Brett Johnston (Multihull).

Fleet Captain John Riddell then demonstrated that PowerPoint is not a fossilized relic and can still be used to show strangely bizarre pictures of the Commodore motor racing, the Vice Commodore dancing in Seoul, the Rear Commodore looking like Warren Beatty (or was it George Hamilton?).

John went on to introduce the new Regatta formats for 2017 and beyond, including a new Ruth Beals format, the Triple Crown, and other “From the fertile mind of the Fleet Captain—this is going to be fun!” Stay tuned.

Bruce then started the “gift exchange/pirates gone wild” highlight of the evening. With over 50 gifts exchanged, most pirated several times, the action was fast and at times hysterical. Strangely, Bethany Tuvene could not hang on to a bottle of booze to save her life. In the end, she did walk away with a Jim Beam Honey.

And then there was the Blunder Bucket. The nominations for the most blunderesque moments were several, but there was a clear winner from the start. Two GovCups ago there was a SolCat upside down jammed against the dam. This time the nomination was to the same person, different boat! The SolCat was replaced by an awesome Nacra Inter 20 and on the drive home after the first time out sailing it, amazingly a set of very pricey composite sails somehow ended up on the freeway! A trashed jib was recovered but the main was never seen again. And the winner is: Josh Kimble! Well done, kiddo! Previous BB winners are proud of you!

Here are some really mediocre photos. The prestigious “Official Club Photographer” position, by the way, is open. If you do have some quality images, please share!

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Commodore Bruce doing his best MC
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Josh, Brett and John. Brett with his new rodeo buckle.
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Mike telling new Viper owner Freddy, “You too can have a rodeo buckle one day.”
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A table full of pirates with two hulls.

 

Tempe Town Lake Fall Series Final Results

Another light wind day concluded the fall series at Tempe Town Lake and even though Mike Hester managed to best Paul Miachika in the two Laser races, it wasn’t nearly enough to overcome Paul’s season lead, making Paul the fleet champion. Dave Haggart won the 14.2 fleet, Emory Heisler the Bucc fleet, and Frederick Moor the Portsmouth.

The scores for the final week and the series final scores are posted on the results page, or click here.

Here are some pictures shot by Mike Ferring.

Tempe Town Lake Week 7 Results

Heading into the stirring conclusion of the Tempe Town Lake fall series, the wind went light, limiting the number (and excitement) of the races. One more Sunday of action to go. The scores are posted on the results page, or click here.

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Hester, Johnston & Miachika Win Governor’s Cup Trophies

In a day made for fast sailing, Mike Hester and Brett Johnston scored belt buckles and Paul Miachika walked off with the giant trophy.

Mike took the monohull fleet and Brett the multi-hull fleet in the first of the new “Triple Crown” series that will include the Leukemia Cup and Birthday Regatta and the Tall Cactus. Mike’s Viper 640 beat second place finisher Scott Richards’s Thistle by a PHRF-adjusted time of about 8½ minutes. Paul Liszewski’s Hobie 33 finished third. Brett’s Nacra 20 was an adjusted 7½ minutes ahead of Scott Agan on his G-Cat 5.7. Trent Sellens was third on a Corsair F27. Here is a complete list of results for the Triple Crown regatta.

AYC Club Champ Paul Miachika took on the Governor’s Cup Pursuit Race in—believe it or don’t—a Laser and did a horizon job on the fleet to win the giant Governor’s Cup trophy. Mike Ferring and crew finished second in their J/80 and Emory Heisler (monohull winner of April’s Tall Cactus) finished third.

The races started with white caps twisting off the tops of waves, with strong puffs and then moderated a bit as the day went on.

Thanks to PROs Wendy Larsen and Dave Christensen and their race committee crew. Thanks also to seven skippers who took ASF Adult Beginning Sailing graduates aboard for the race, to give them a taste of this game we play.

Mike Hester won the monohull division of the "Triple Crown" Governor's Cup in a Viper 640. This is Dave Evans's Viper. Photo: Mike Ferring

Mike Hester won the monohull division of the “Triple Crown” Governor’s Cup in his Viper 640. This is Dave Evans’s Viper. Photo: Mike Ferring

 

Scott Agan waves from his second-place finishing G-Cat 5.7 as he passes the crew of Melissa Kay, which had finished the shorter Pursuit Race. Photo: Mike Ferring

Scott Agan waves from his second-place finishing G-Cat 5.7 as he passes the crew of Melissa Kay, which had finished the shorter Pursuit Race. Photo: Mike Ferring

Scott Johnston ripping into the multi-hull lead at the 2016 Governor's Cup. Photo: Mike Ferring

Brett Johnston ripping into the multi-hull lead at the 2016 Governor’s Cup. Photo: Mike Ferring

The start of the "Triple Crown" monohull race. Photo: Michele Korszeniewski

The start of the “Triple Crown” monohull race. Photo: Michele Korszeniewski

Victor Felice

Victor Felice aboard his Nacra at the Governor’s Cup. Photo: Marc Benoist

2016 Governor’s Cup & Triple Crown

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The 2016 Governor’s Cup Regatta will take place on December 3rd at Lake Pleasant and this year introduces something new, different and exciting.

Here’s the scoop. There are two categories: A pursuit race much as we’ve done it the last several years and a straight-up PHRF race.

The Pursuit Race is an informal twice-around-the lake long distance sailing event starting at 10 am. The winner takes home the traditional really big trophy. Info and registration here. Registration is $10.

The Other Race is a full blown PHRF twice-around-the-lake race. Two sections will be scored, Monohull boats (starting slower-rated boats at 10:30 and faster-rated ones at 10:35) and Multi Hull (starting at 11). Registration is $25.

The 2016 Governor’s Cup is also the first of three regattas that comprise the AYC TRIPLE CROWN. The new Triple Crown combines our three non-series regattas: The Governor’s Cup, the Leukemia Cup-Birthday Regatta and the Tall Cactus. Further information and registration for all of these regattas will now happen at a new AYC website, www.aycregattas.com.

The new site is intended to help promote these three events outside of Arizona, throughout the Southwest and Pacific Coast.

None of the things the club does can happen without the dedication and commitment of members and volunteers. Thank you to all involved.

Tempe Town Lake Results Week 5

The scores for week 5 of racing at Tempe Town Lake are posted on the results page, or click here.

December’s Meeting: Twisted Gift Exchange

December’s monthly meeting brings the annual AYC gift exchange, a gift exchange with a twist. You might say twisted, even. The meeting is at 7 pm, Tuesday, December 13, at the Caddy Shack @ Rolling Hills, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe.

Here’s how the gift exchange works:

  • You bring a wrapped gift valued at about $20.
  • You pick a number from a hat to determine the order we select gifts.
  • We’ll have two people called to the front of the room at the same time.
  • Each person can choose to pick a wrapped gift from the pile or play pirate and take the gift from someone who’s already opened one.
  • Gifts can be “pirated” only twice before they’re safe from further theft.

Some of the gifts can be pretty weird, but if you’re looking for a prized gift suggestion: Liquor always seems to bring applause!

What’s the Christmas gift exchange like? Here’s what happened in 2015.

Victor Felice holding tight to a gift in 2015. Photo: Mike Ferring

Victor Felice holding tight to a gift in 2015. Photo: Mike Ferring

Lake Pleasant Week 4 Results

Generally nice weekend, wasn’t it? Some decent wind, comfortable temperatures, well-run races by the Santana 20 bunch, and the best dinner so far this far, led by Peter Burgard.

The scores for week 4 of racing at Lake Pleasant are posted on the results page, or click here.

Still Dreamin'. The beard says Tom Baker at the helm. Photo: Mike Ferring

Still Dreamin’. The beard says Tom Baker at the helm. Photo: Mike Ferring

From Martin Lorch’s email to his fleet after the weekend:

On Saturday Kim Stuart as PRO did a superb job with the help of:
On R/C:
Mile Maloney, 1st Officer
Gerald Byrnes, certified driver
Dale Buchanan (flag signaling officer)
On the Wicked Awesome (WA):
Mike Parker, Certified Driver
Vern Bybee, Mark and buoy specialist

On Sunday:
Yours truly as PRO, Jack-of-All Trades,
Gerald Byrnes Certified Driver

Dale Buchanan (Flag Signaling officer)
Vern Bybee, 1st scorer
In style on the beautiful Riddell Chris-Craft. (Nice loaned runabout. Our WA went on the fritz!)
Mike Parker certified driver and mermaid catcher
Erika Parker (committed mermaid! (mark and buoy specialist)

Dinner:
A special Pete and Judy Burgard from Tucson’s only Sparkey, who served a wonderful BBQ shredded beef open faced sandwich with green corn tamales (from a special source in Tucson, coleslaw, cowboy beans and apple pie, Sangria, Merlot and beer. Thank you

All performed without hitch. Nice winds on Saturday and a repeat on Sunday morning until the wind died around 11 am.

Thank you to you all.

We wish Amanda Woodcock a speedy recovery and the same to Dave Cummings who underwent surgery after he experimented doing Evel Knievel type stunts.

For those of you who were under the weather and could not make it. Get well soon.

Hope to see you at Lake Pleasant on the 19th and 20th of this month, the last weekend of the fall series.

Martin Lorch
Santana 20 Fleet Captain

Tempe Town Lake Wk 3

The scores from week 3 of racing at Tempe Town Lake are posted on the results page, or click here. There was no wind for week 4 and so no races and no race results. It was described as “bob and bake.”

Lake Pleasant Results Week 3

Another mixed weekend for the fall series, with some light wind and some,  yes, lighter wind. The scores for Week 3 of racing at Lake Pleasant are posted on the results page, or click here.

Multi hulls are turning out in force. Photo: Mike Ferring

Multi hulls are turning out in force. Fred Rahn and his Hobie are leading so far. Photo: Mike Ferring

October Meeting: Professional Paddle Boarder Chase Kosterlitz

Professional stand up paddle boarder Chase Kosterlitz told the October AYC monthly meeting that he’s trying to bring order out of chaos for the young sport of SUP racing. Chase showed a video of the start of the world’s most prominent event in 2013, with a herd of paddleboarders pushing past the supposed start line, edging up to the water (keeping up with the “first cheater,” he said) and then crashing into each other as they started, looking for room to put their boards.

A sport without rules is not a sport, he said, describing what he’s tried to do with the Stand Up Paddle Athletes Association (SUPAA), which he founded. He said he’s now trained about 50 officials worldwide in an attempt to stabilize the sport and make it more fair for all competitors.

“I live in San Diego,” says Chase, “where I surf, hike and train in between traveling around the world looking for adventure. I got into water sports as a professional kiteboarding and stand up paddle instructor, where I learned to kiteboard in 2005 and began stand up paddling in 2008.

“After a collegiate basketball career, I became an avid water sports enthusiast–dedicated to living and promoting an active lifestyle on the water. This passion led me to establish my Florida-based business, Water Monkey, in order to promote this lifestyle. In five years of competition I have several championship titles and multiple wins across the United States and around the world. In addition to competition I enjoy writing and traveling to find new and challenging places to paddle, surf, kitesurf and explore.”

For more information visit SUPathletes.com. And here’s his personal website.

Chase showing the AYC meeting the wild start of a SUP race. Photo: Chris Smith

Chase showing the AYC meeting the wild start of a SUP race. Photo: Chris Smith

Yes, standup paddleboard is a physical sport!

Yes, standup paddleboard is a physical sport!

Lake Pleasant Results Week 2

Wasn’t that interesting? Saturday’s racing began with drifting and the race committee was setting up to shorten course on the first race of the day when suddenly the breeze surged in from the north, blasting down the lake at about 20 mph. Yikes.

The scores from this weekend of racing at Lake Pleasant are posted on the results page, or you can find them by clicking here. An RC error means that the second multi-hull race Saturday is still being sorted out.

Bruce Andress and company in Victor Felice's J/24 as the wind filled the the waves rose. This shot is by Chris Smith at water level with his GoPro.

Bruce Andress and company in Victor Felice’s J/24 as the wind filled and the waves rose. This shot is by Chris Smith at water level with his GoPro.

The photographer gets into it. Chris Smith ducking boats and shooting pictures. Photo: Mike Ferring

The photographer gets into it. Chris Smith ducking boats and shooting pictures. Photo: Mike Ferring

Hang on! Here comes the wind and Gene Muller cranks on the helm. Photo: Mike Ferring

Hang on! Here comes the wind and Gene Muller cranks on the helm. Photo: Mike Ferring

Tempe Town Lake Results

Weeks 1 & 2 of racing at Tempe Town lake are posted on the results page. Or click here for week 1 & here for week 2.

Once the Dragon Boats cleared the race area on Sunday (10/2), a good breeze (and a little rain) kept the racing interesting.

Racing Lasers against a backdrop of the new Vela apartment building. Photo: Mike Ferring

Racing Lasers against a backdrop of the new Vela apartment building. Photo: Mike Ferring

Lake Pleasant Week 1

The first weekend of Lake Pleasant racing began with a whimper and ended with a blast: light wind on Saturday gradually got stronger later; the wind was too heavy for racing Sunday morning (and then the steering went out on Wicked Awesome). Despite a strong registration by the multi-hull fleet, the turnout for the weekend was light.

The scores are posted on the results page, or you’ll find them here.

Multi-hulls head for the windward mark in light wind. Photo: Charles Landis

Multi-hulls head for the windward mark in light wind. The multis have shown up in force this fall, registering the most boats of any fleet. Photo: Charles Landis

Paul Miachika Competes in Laser Masters

By Paul Miachika

Fifty Masters in radial (23) and standard rigs (27) braved the 20 to 25 knot winds August 5-7 to compete in the Laser Masters North American Championship hosted by the Richmond Yacht Club.

Overall winner in the standard rig after 9 races was Charlie Buckingham, the USA representative in the Men’s Laser at the Rio Olympics! Yours truly finished 12th.

Here’s the link to the regatta with tons of other great photos and race results.

Enjoy! Anyone over 35 can race in Master Laser regattas. There are about four to six in SoCal each year, so it’s easy to participate. They’re not as intense as open regattas and include lots of on and off water camaraderie.

Paul Miachika falls off after rounding.

Paul Miachika falls off after rounding.

Lake Law Enforcement for September Monthly Meeting

Would you like to know how to launch your boat with the trailer still attached? Like some tips on how to attract the attention of law enforcement while boating?

Maricopa County Deputy Sheriff John Ramsay has seen it all in his 30 years of lake duty and he’ll bring a bag load of stories, both comical and serious, when he joins us for the next AYC membership meeting.

Not only does Deputy Ramsay have vast experience with the craziness on our local lakes, but he also trains others to deal with it. He’s one of just 25 officers nationally to be certified to train lawmen on the water.

The meeting is Tuesday, September 13, beginning at 7pm (but arrive early for dinner). Monthly meetings are held at the Caddy Shack @ Rolling Hills Golf Course, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85281-1205 (map) and both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

Lake Pleasant Vista. Photo: Mike Ferring

Lake Pleasant Vista. Photo: Mike Ferring

Sail Summer Wednesday Evenings

Just when you’ve cleared the “midweek hump” at work on hot summer Wednesdays, drive to Tempe Town Lake, launch a small boat, and head out for an hour or so of casual, run-what-ya-brung racing. First Wednesday action is May 25.

George Sheller is the organizer of this loosely-organized gathering. At about 5:30 he drops buoys in the lake and whistles one-minute race starts to anyone who shows up. If Ferrings are there with their automated start gadget, they’ll sound the countdown.

Usually the group includes a few Lasers and a C14 or two, maybe a Buccaneer or Fireball, and after the boats round the marks and cross the finish line, the winner is: well, who knows, because handicaps don’t apply and nobody keeps score. When it starts to get dark or the wind dies, when the boats are stowed, the group collects at a nearby tavern for dinner and a beer.

A single 360 turn clears penalties. We set short courses, getting lots of races in. This is not an official AYC event, so you’re on your own in terms of a boat, liability and fun. We start promptly at 5:30 pm and if you miss one or two races it’s no big deal since there are no trophies at the end, just a cold beer.

The best way to stay in touch with these Wednesday night races is to sign onto the Arizona Yacht Club Yahoo list and receive the occasional emails. (Sometimes races are canceled and you’ll be notified by email.)

Laser on Tempe Town Lake. Photo: Debbie Borgman

Laser on Tempe Town Lake. Photo: Debbie Borgman

Safety at Sea Expert Offers Suggested Skills & Gear

Suddenly alone. Now what? You’re suddenly by yourself on your boat, scanning frothy waves for your crew. Now what do you do?

In July, sailing safety expert Bruce Brown will talked us through this frightening scenario. Bruce is the main presenter of US Sailing’s Safety at Sea seminars, seminars that are both very helpful and entertainingly delivered.

Here’s Bruce’s handout, a list of essential skills for anyone heading out on big water in a small boat. It’s fine for the skipper to know how to rescue someone, but what happens if it’s the skipper who goes for a swim? Can your crew execute a MOB recovery or call on the VHF in an emergency?

Bruce has been a prominent member of the sailing safety community for many years, a former president of the US Marine Safety Association and a member of the US Sailing Safety at Sea Committee since 2010.

July speaker Bruce Brown

July speaker Bruce Brown