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Summer Camp For Adults

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  • Summer Camp For Adults

    Whidbey Island Race Week is back and better than ever! Under new management the "Summer Classic" of the
    PNW party circuit returned with panache and style befitting on the the best event of the season for everyone!

    Below find a few exerts from the daily new blog and some awesome pics that should get to thing about WIRW 2017!

    all images © Jan's Marine Pics

    What a difference a day makes. After months of record-breaking temperatures, and a weekend of zero wind for the dinghy racers, Whidbey Island Race Week 2015 began with a bang for the big boats, including the massive J/105 fleet, above. More than one hundred vessels of all shapes and sizes (including windsurfers) assembled at Oak Har-bor July 18—24 for the 33rd year. New owners Charley and Schelleen Rathkopf re-engineered the event to provide a fresh atmosphere of outdoor and on-the-water fun and competition for sailors of all ages. New this year are a Kids’ Zone, Kids’ Camp and junior racing and sailing opportunities.

    The Oak Harbor Yacht Club, too, embraced the phoenix rising spirit. Nice re-model, Buccaneers! After a hot and sweaty Sunday of packing away the dinghys and kicking back at the evening’s party complete with a salmon din-ner and live music, racers from around the west coast of the US and Canada, and beyond, awoke to the first grey skies many had seen in months. A strong ebb tide combined with an intense southerly beckoned the boats into Saratoga Passage for Monday’s first race. The starts were predominantly conservative with nary a port start save for Kelly Penney’s Express 37 Avalanche in Fleet 4. Local knowledge, or a lucky flier, blessed those, like Bruce Vandeventer’s Melges 24, Wiggle Room, who chose the west side and the thermals from the still toasty land. As the clouds began to part revealing blue sky and sunshine, so too did the traditional westerly shift begin to unfold, sending the race committee scrambling to shoot off a second race in the brisk and building westerly.

    It took the crack CYC crew just 35 minutes to finish the last boat in the first start and signal the first boats in the second race. By 2:30 the doctor was in and the fleet galloped into the familiar pastures of Penn Cove. Improv seemed to be the shtick of the day, as when Rex DuPuis’ J/30 Gadzooks blew out their main and, rather than retreating, simply reefed the thing and plowed on. There were plenty of round-ups in the gusty 16-knot winds, especially in the cross hairs of the Passage and the Cove. One boat, not a racer, went aground, and Ed Snyders’ Ross 930, Overtime, had to retire from the first race due to a spinnaker halyard malfunction. Remember, unless you’re starting or finishing, all start and finish lines are restricted

    Tuesday morning of the 33rd Whidbey Island Race Week dawned calm, but no sooner had the fleet headed out of the Oak Harbor Marina than the wind began to build. Was it a southerly? A westerly? At Blower’s Bluff there was no telltale bovine smell for confirmation. To the south dark skies, overhead, cumulus clouds. A convergence zone? With the marks eventually set in Penn Cove to the east up near Captain Whidbey’s Inn, and with the flukey puffs and nor-therly bent to the breeze, the usual elevator west along Penn Cove’s was out of commission. The resulting charge up, as well as the usual down, the east beach gave the out-of-owners not just a true Pacific northwest spectacle, but an up-close and hands-on one at that. The J/24 Itchy & Scratchy skyed a halyard, giving the crew an opportunity to also retrieve their perhaps rusty skills at good old-fashioned bareheaded sail changing.

    So they made an unplanned stop at Coupeville’s red barn, and with some eager help from the spectator gallery above, the halyard was back on deck in no time flat. The collective good karma ensured Itchy & Scratchy made it back to the course in time for the day’s second race, and after it was all over the day’s first place finish was theirs. After just two days Whidbey Island Race Week 2015 has five races per class in the logbook. Multi-minute leads by the front run-ners were the signature moves in Tuesday’s three races. The elusive Mike Goldfarb wasn’t on hand to pick up his first place award on Tuesday at the after-race party, and because of his hefty lead it’s probable the other Farr 30s were even doubtful of his existence. It’s a tight class nonetheless and the fleet — includ-ing Lance Staughton’s Bat Out of Hell, Bruce Chan’s 65 Red Roses from Canada, and Chris Tutmark’s gorgeous Patricia — will doubtless make a fine showing at the Farr 30 Worlds this October in Seattle.

    When not helming his Farr in Pacific waters, Tutmark spends his time going solo in his Mini Transat somewhere in the Atlantic. Others in the one-percent included ken Chin’s Olson 911 Kowloon, Stuart Burnell’s J/109 Tantivy, John Hoag’s 1D35, Shrek, and Judy Buttons’ C&C 115, Rags. Appropriately, first to finish on Tuesday was Brad Butler’s Sierra 26, Uno. The one-design fleets saw some fresh faces on Tuesday when the J/105 from Portland, Free Bowl of Soup gave Last Tango a scare. Also knocking at the door was Incontheivable, representing the younger generation of the Cohen armada.

    YA MON It’s back! Welcome to Thursday of Whidbey Island Race Week, aka Reggae Night, Tropi-cal Day, what do I wear today oh that’s right my Hawaiian shirt day. (If you forgot to throw yours into your sail bag there are still a few left for sale at the club house.) Speaking of sales, if you want to be the proud owner of a winner, Richard Demmler’s J/24 Itchy & Scratchy can be yours. And if their two bullets on Wednesday streak continues, her value will continue to rise. Pimp Demmler will throw in his professional sculpture/rock star bowman and the rest of the crew if the price is right.

    Speaking of rock stars, and also repping Fleet 9, perhaps the youngest is wee Arthur, the tactician aboard Chad Hol-comb’s OakHarbor based Olson 25, Yeah Dogg. At just 17 months Arthur’s already a Race Week veteran. Though from his car seat, strapped in down below, his view is of the back of his rocked-to-sleep droopy eye-lids, he and his lady killer dimples are well-rested for the after-race party. His dance card fills up fast so get on it. Speaking of racing, Wednesday’s two race event in the hefty Penn Cove westerly, which filled in at 1:00 and clocked steady gusts of 22 knots by mid afternoon, mixed up the standings. With the exception of a few (cough, Goldfarb, cough), there are no clear cut front runners, with perhaps the exception of John Hoag’s J/35, Shrek, whose Navy fly boy was back after having to “work” on Tuesday. No doubt the triple fly by of tandem Growlers on Wednesday were his comrades checking out the course. (By the way, don’t be too cool for school — accept your pickle dishes when announced at the evening’s awards ceremony!)

    " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella" Photo Gallery

  • #2
    Nice piece, but I was expecting something a bit more riské


    • #3
      Whidbey Island Race Week Recap!

      Whidbey Island Race Week Event Recap July 20-24, 2015

      According to many longtime Race Week attendees, WIRW 2015 was one for the record books and it was wildly successful in all areas.

      The new WIRW Kids Camp included fun island outings including a private tour of the Admiralty Head Lighthouse and Fort at Camp Casey, a cruise into Penn Cove on the Schooner SUVA to see the sailboat racing, a trip to the Rosario Tide Pools to have a guided tour by naturalists through the tide pools, and many other fun outings and projects. The kids also enjoyed sailing Optis every afternoon and learning new skills and gaining new confidences at the helm.
      The post-race parties were also very well received. With great bands including Rabbit Wilde, Kickin’ Dust and Gertrude’s Hearse, racers packed the party area where they enjoyed dancing and hanging out. And, with expanded food options available at the Oak Harbor Yacht Club, and the addition of picnic tables in the party area, racers also enjoyed playing corn-hole, volleyball and participating in the first annual WIRW Crabcake Cookoff Contest.

      The new WIRW Spectator Cruises aboard SUVA was also a big hit and each of the 3 cruises open to the public were sold out. Longtime WIRW supporters, Stan Stanley and his wife Paige Stanley, hosted the WIRW Spectator Cruises that took the public out to the race course where they received front row seats and a sailboat racing tutorial delivered by the Stanleys. Primary Race Officer, Charley Rathkopf, also paid a visit to the WIRW Spectator Cruises, offering a personal welcome to all who were there.
      Camping was made available to 250 racers at the Navy Base across the street from the Oak Harbor Marina.
      But the racing at WIRW was, simply put, epic. With a world class race management team under the leadership of Primary Race Officer, Charley Rathkopf, WIRW once again delivered the best race product available in the Pacific Northwest region.

      Monday’s racing on July 20, started in a 12 knot southerly in Saratoga Passage for the first race. It started to shut down and shift near the end of the race for the smaller boats and the RC picked up the course and shifted to the mouth of Penn Cove for a second race. With the westerly fill well out into Saratoga Passage racers saw a different part of the cove than normal, with the weather marks near Coupeville and the starting line at the mouth of the cove and leeward marks further east.

      Tuesday, saw the wind fill in late but then building to between 17 and 20 knots by the end of the day. With the forecast for the rest of the week questionable, three races were completed. On

      Wednesday and Thursday, the wind was even later to come in, with racing postponed and boats drifting or heading to Coupeville for ice cream until 1:30 pm. When the breeze did fill, it exceeded the forecasted 6 knots and again blew in the low teens.

      Friday, July 24 started with rain and a southerly. Again the breeze topped the expected 7 knots and blew in the 12 knot range and, running shorter courses, 5 of the 9 fleets raced 3 races while the other 4 fleets raced 2.

      All fleets ended their week at WIRW with either 11 or 12 races.

      The largest fleets were the Melges 24 and J 105s, with 11 and 10 boats respectively. The J 105 fleet has improved alot from two years ago when Jerry Dierks on Delirium won every race for the first 4 days. This year, in 12 races, five different racers had bullets, and all but one boat had a finish in the top 3. Despite the improved competition, Jim Geros on Last Tango won the fleet with a 10 point margin. The second and third place boats both made the trip to WIRW from Portland, with Troublemaker (Kent Sisk, John Weil) in 2nd and Free Bowl of Soup (Doug Schenk, Eric Hopper, Matt Davis) in 3rd.

      In the Melges fleet, Kevin Welch, on Mikey dominated the fleet, throwing out a DNC in the last race and finishing with a total of 14 points. A distant second was Mikey Kids sailed by Kevin Welch’s kids (39 points), and Mark Noel on Eclipse one point behind.

      Most of the PHRF fleets had one or two boats that dominated, including Shrek (John Hoag), Ogopogo (Paul and April Faget) and Itchy & Scratchy (Richard Demmler). However Ken Chen on Kowloon, dominated Fleet 8 with 12 points in 12 races, throwing out a 3rd in the first race of the regatta (all other races were bullets except for one 2nd). This performance lead to Ken and crew winning the overall award for WIRW 2015, the Tesla Experience, including 24 hour use of a Tesla Model S.

      Small boats, including 15 Kona Sailboards, Hobies, F18, A-Cats, a Snipe, an E Scow, a Windmill, and 2 CFJ sailed by OHYC juniors sailed in the small boat portion of the regatta the weekend before the big boats raced. The small monohulls launched at Captain Coupe Park in Coupeville and the boards launched at a beach on the North side of Penn Cove while all cats launched from OH Marina. Both days it was necessary for the RC whalers to tow the cats out to Penn Cove to wait for the breeze to fill. Races were conducted in light 4-8 knots of air on Saturday with three races completed. The Konas needed a lot of coaching on the Rule 26 starting procedure, but by the last race had figured out the system. Evidently most of the windsurfer races they participate in are pretty loosely structured. Sunday there was no racing, and one spectator described Penn Cove as, ‘So flat it was concaved in the middle.’

      Complete results are available at

      Plans for WIRW 2016 are already underway. The dates are July 11-15, 2016. Sponsorships are already being explored as many 2015 sponsors have expressed interest participating again in 2016.
      " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella" Photo Gallery