The CIBC, along with able assist from the NEIYA, concluded the third successful land yacht regatta at Loring yesterday. It was stretched to five days this time, with the opening day on Wednesday having about the best conditions ever. Breeze 10-15 out of the south gave full power access to the entire flight line, as well as allowing a few renegade sailors to escape onto the roads and lanes of the base itself.
Crossing the tracks sailing uphill. Turns out the best asphalt is actually on the runways: road maintenance is not high on the Authorities’ priorities. The BloKarts set up a start line in the afternoon and practiced dial-ups.
Rain Thursday allowed for getting to know the new people and catching up with old friends. We waited all day for a break in the clouds, hanging out in the big tent, but it was not to be. We had our opening night banquet at the Northern Maine Brewing Co. while still the rain came down. More than one iceboater observed that rolling with the weather here was just like iceboating, but warm.
Nina drops the flag for the BloKart start. We had ten races for each class, and then a couple of full fleet tours on every inch of asphalt we could find. The Wisconsin guys went in early to grill some fantastic bratwursts imported from that great state, so well known for their “brats”, and Dave Lussier opened his famous Dark and Stormy bar in the tent. After last call, the boats were packed in for the night:
West-NW winds Saturday made for some tricky sailing. One could almost lay the windward leg with the help of a lift every now and then, but if you missed the lifts you had to throw in a tack or two while watching the guy who was right behind you keep pinching along. But now you had more speed and maybe you caught him and maybe you didn’t. There was close racing with lots of different boats taking a first over the course of the event. The favorite rivalry was between our two junior BloKart sailors, Aiden Schmiedlin and Milo Fleming. They swapped leads many times, with Aiden inching ahead at the end by only five points. We hope to see these guys on the ice together some day, keeping alive the great tradition of East-Midwest rivalry.
Above, approaching the finish line on the big runway.
Kate Morrone, BB Hredocik and Mike Dinning put on a barbeque feast Saturday night that could not be beat.
Sunday dawned wet and windless. Most forecasts predicted clearing late morning and then big wind the rest of the day. As we already had nineteen races in the books we decided to call the regatta, award prizes, and wait for the rain the clear for some afternoon sailing and scratch racing. But after three days of hard racing and miles to home for most, everyone packed up and the base was back to its lonely self by noon.
Our race committee, Henry Cataposto, Nina Fleming and Deb Whitehorse kept the racers organized and well focused, tempered with a relaxed vibe. It’s to their credit that we were able to get in so many races. Thanks as well to Ann Foeller of the Toledo Ice Yacht Club for tabulating the race results and getting them on line quickly and clearly. That was a big upgrade, to say the least!
Plans are afoot for a May regatta, but don’t let that distract you. Time to start Thinking Ice! The NEIYA fall meeting and swap meet is scheduled for October 23 at the Thompson Speedway in Thompson, CT., same plae as last year. CIBC meeting and pot luck to follow on Sunday at Dave Fortiers home and workshop in Biddeford, Maine.