AYC Fun Pilgrimage to Long Beach

Typical J/70 mark rounding! Crazy stuff with 28 boats. Photo: Tom Walker Photography

The mercury in Phoenix was banging on the 112 mark when a large delegation of AYC members headed for the beach: Long Beach. We came for temps in the mid-60s, wind in mid-teens, and competition in the stratosphere.

It was the annual evacuation to Ullman Sails Long Beach Race Week (LBRW) and this year about 35 people from Arizona showed the AYC colors. David Newland, Maryellen and I brought our J/70 to play with the big guys, helped by Will Suto from San Diego. Mike and Sarah Hester, John Mayall, and Joel Hurley raced Mike’s Viper 640. Mike and Jo Grijalva raced Shockwave with their usual AYC pals.

And this year there were two AYC pickup crews racing the Long Beach Yacht Club charter Catalina 37s. John Riddell’s Crazy Train bunch were back this year, joining Rob Gibbs’ Cactus League crew in the 11-boat fleet. Both of these teams collect in frat-house-style rent-a-houses and add to the legend of LBRW. (Ask somebody from Cactus League about Gardyloo Traveling Road Show, the team from Seattle that keeps adding to its, mmmm, reputation.) Read more about Rob’s trip in the Commodore’s Corner.

With parties at LBYC and Alamitos Bay Yacht Club, sailing on three courses plus random legs, 136 registered boats, and some of the best sailors in the West, good wind and cool temps, LBRW will keep Arizona sailors coming back. It’s certainly not all the hardware we bring home.

The racing photos on this page are from Tom Walker Photography. If you like them, please buy them from him.

Sarah Hester shows the team how to hike. Photo: Tom Walker Photography

 

Rob Gibbs (on bow with Heather McClain) and his Cactus League team downwind on a Catalina 37. Dave Haggart at the wheel. Photo: Tom Walker Photography

 

Ferrings and David Newland on J/70 Melissa Kay (far right). Photo: Tom Walker Photography

 

John Mayall, Joel Hurley, and Mike Hester prepare the Viper for action at ABYC. Photo: Mike Ferring