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Off with a Bang:  Lake Pleasant Opening Day

The Lake Pleasant Fall Series kicked off in a big way last Saturday, September 18.  Joe and Bonnie Motil were up before the sun preparing breakfast for AYC sailors.  They perfected their signature Sunrise Quesadilla’s over a period of weeks leading up to Opening Day, and about 40-people started their day with Joe and Bonnie’s excellent breakfast.

At 10:30, Race Committee PRO Mike Ferring readied AYC’s ceremonial cannon for firing.  Honors were given to our special guest, Rodney Coomber (Junior Staff Commodore visiting from the Navy Yacht Club, Long Beach, CA), who officially opened our racing season with a really good bang!  

After the smoke cleared, Rodney and his wife Joyce (Director, Southern California Yachting Association) were taken to the boat docks by Bob Worrall and George Tingom. Joyce boarded the Committee Boat, and Rodney, Bob, and George rendezvoused with Tom Errickson who motored over from Scorpion Bay – they boarded Sailaway, Tom’s Catalina 36, to observe the races.  About 20-skippers launched their boats and made for the starting line.  The Catalina 22 Fleet fielded 6-boats, with 5-boats competing in the PHRF Spin Fleet, 4-boats in the Santana 20s Fleet, and 2-Thistles.  

Conditions were warm – mid-to-high 90s – with initially light winds of 4 to 7-knots for the first race.  But, two intense storm cells – one to the north of the lake, and the other to the west – soon built and brought gusty winds of 10 to 20-knots for the rest of the day, providing for some really spirited sailing as boats powered through the 2-foot chop that soon formed across the lake.  The Race Committee adjusted fast and often to changing wind direction, successfully delivering 2 to 3-races for the various Fleets. See the scores here:  Scores

After a really great day of racing, tired and hungry skippers and crews headed to Spinnaker Point, where Martin Lorch and Bob Labine were busily preparing a dinner of hot dogs, chicken, hamburgers, impossible burgers, and bratwursts, complete with sides, and chased down with cake from Lori Reger.  After dinner, AYC’s gift raffle was held – lots of great gifts were awarded all amid a few good laughs.  The band Hyer Tide kicked it in just as the sun was setting, and everyone enjoyed their fun, funky, music.  As if the day wasn’t already perfect enough,  we were treated to a beautiful rising full moon.

Rear Commodore Marshall Williamson promised an Opening Day to remember, and he nailed it.  It was a truly fantastic season opener.  

Lastly, there are many, many, people to thank for their time and energy that contributed to the success of our Opening Day. Without them, none of this would have been possible. At the risk of missing anyone, we offer AYC’s heartfelt THANKS to the following volUnteers:

Event Organizer:  Rear Commodore Marshall Williamson

Breakfast & Dinner:  Joe and Bonnie Motil, Martin Lorch, Bob Labine, Matt & Andi Baker, Alan and Shelley Johnson (new members!), Jessica Zornik, Joanne Aspinall, Lori Reger, Mark Trainor, Steve Morisky.

Race Committee (Sport Boat Fleet):  Mike Ferring (PRO), Maryellen Ferring (Chief Scorekeeper), Greg Lausin, Joerg Schmidt (new member!), Robin Stewart, Dewei Xiang, Mark Trainor, Mike Hester, Andrew Newingham, Rob Willis, and Scott St. Pierre (new member!). Rob Gibbs crunched the numbers and quickly posted the scores.

Guest Observation Boat:  Tom Errickson, Bob Worrall, and George Tingom.

New Member / Beginning Sailor Support (took aboard new members/candidates & beginning sailors (ASF Adult Sailing Class students and others)): Peter Schweizer (C-22 Fleet), Nelson Passos (PHRF Spin Fleet), Marshall Williamson (PHRF Spin Fleet), and Bob Naylor (C-22 Fleet). 

Photos contributed by: Mike Ferring, Bob Labine, Bob Worrall, Robin Stewart, Andrew Newingham, Joanne Aspinall.