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Governor’s Cup Regatta: it’s Hester by a hair!

Downwind spinnaker dual – Mike Hester’s Nectar Sled slugs it out with David Newland’s Dreamline in a race to the finish.

Thirty-seven (37) boats registered for the Governors Cup, and 31-made it to the starting line yesterday, amid light winds, sunny skies, and warm November temperatures.  Light air aside at the beginning and very end of the race, it was a beautiful Arizona day for the Regatta.

And what a regatta it was!  Mike Hester skippered his Viper 640, Nectar Sled, into the winner’s circle to again claim the big trophy for the second straight year!  Hot on his heels, finishing a mere 22-seconds later, was Dreamline, David Newland’s beautiful new J/92, crewed by David’s son Josh, Marc and Myles Danner, and Joel Hurley.  Even at almost 2-1/2-tons heavier and 10-feet longer, the J/92 and Viper had really similar PHRF ratings.  Mike is a great sailor, and a humble guy – he thanks his crew – Freddy Tuvene and John Mayall – for his win, and the Race Committee and the other competitors for a great overall race.  Mike showed that he’s still got it, and David proved that the big J/92 can really move.  What a great finish!

This year, one in four boats registered for the Regatta were multi-hulls!  They were out in force, with 6-boats on the start line.  Leading the pack was Jim Tomes sailing Raisin Hull, his Bimare F18HT Italian racing catamaran – a fast 18-footer that barely weighs 300-pounds soaking wet.  Jim bested second-place finisher Tom Sinnickson’s Hobie 18 Don’t Panic by 7-minutes.  This was not Jim’s first Governor’s Cup win – he was also the first place multi-hull winner in 2019 and took the big trophy in 2015. 

The Race Committee – comprised of both the Gibbs’ and Baker families – did an exceptional job running the Regatta.  PRO Rob Gibbs had help from his wife Kim and their daughter Hailey on the Committee Boat, while Matt Baker skippered the run-about, with help from crew Colin Gibbs, and Matt’s sons Mason and Logan.  The run-about had a busy day, assisting one C-14.2 that turtled south of Balanced Rock Island, and another whose skipper went overboard near the south mark.  Both skippers were okay, and resumed sailing.  Matt  and crew also assisted a Sunfish with a leaky cockpit, and towed a disabled Macgregor 21 to the dock, all while keeping an eye on the rest of the fleet, which at times was spread-out from one end of the lake to the other.  The Committee Boat also assisted several sailors, towing in both a catamaran and a C-25 with engine problems.  Even after a busy day on the water, Rob found the energy to tally and post the scores by early evening! 

Many thanks to everyone that raced and supported the event – it was a really great Governor’s Cup. And congratulations to Mike Hester for clinching the big trophy two years in a row, and to Jim Tomes for his first place finish with the multi-hulls!

Race results:  Governors Cup.
Photos:  PRO Rob Gibbs shared his photo album for the day here – Photos.