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Sail scene

Conn. Swan sails

to victory in Newport

The Rolex Swan American Regatta wrapped up the last week of July in Newport, R.I., with 39 yachts participating in the biennial regatta.

In Class A, the Swan 601, Moneypenny, owned by Jim Swartz of Edgartown, Mass., sailed to a comfortable victory winning every race of the week except the last two.

“It was a great week. We had a great start and we’ve had some fantastic sailing,” said Swartz. “The crew has been fantastic; they just executed faultlessly all week.”

Victory in Class B remained in the balance until the final race, with Swan 44s Vixen and Crescendo dueling to the very end. John Wayt of Jamestown, R.I., had the momentum to string together four consecutive victories for his Vixen. After winning the first race of the day over Crescendo by 30 seconds, Vixen topped the leader board by a single point until Crescendo sailed to an easy victory and the class win well ahead of Vixen in the final race.

“Today was a day of very competitive sailing,” said Martin Jacobson of Greenwich, Conn., co-owner of Crescendo. “In the first race we finished second to Vixen, so we knew we had to really do well in the final race. We were able to sail to our plan, which is important, and we didn’t make any mistakes.”

In Class C, the nine-boat Swan 45 one-design division was a battle of New Yorkers. William Douglass and his Goombay Smash went into the day ahead of Massimo Ferragamo’s Bellicosa and managed to clinch the win despite Ferragamo’s win in the first race.

“Today we had a bit of trouble going upwind,” said Douglass. “I think we had the wrong jib up on the first race and Bellicosa sailed a fantastic race. They were really trying to put the pressure on us. All of a sudden we realized that they just cut our lead in half so we still had our work cut out.”

Joe Huber of Wynnewood, Pa., dominated the non-spinnaker division, Class D, from start to finish. His Swan 44, Reef Points, scored seven first places and discarded a fourth to win by 19 points over second-place Roland Bathory of Weston, Mass., and his Swan 53, Amanda.

New regatta series

covers the East Coast

Sailors have been talking about a series of world class racing events, both inshore and offshore, to bring sailors up the East Coast from Florida and the Caribbean to New England regattas and the Bermuda Race with great racing along the way.

The new US-IRC Gulf Stream Series invites the best yachts racing in the world to compete for two new trophies. The series will feature racing on the East Coast of America, Florida, mid-Atlantic, New England, plus Bermuda and in the Caribbean. Racing will be scored under the IRC rating system either in specific classes, or dual-scored along with other systems. Organizers anticipate participation from an international IRC fleet and hope the new series will bring a return to the days of big series racing like the SORC, but offer sailors the choice between events best suited for their sailing programs.

The Onion Patch Series, including Newport-Bermuda, is required, as is one of the two medium-distance races — Fort Lauderdale to Key West or the Block Island Race. Two other events, Key West Race Week, St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, Acura Miami Race Week, International Rolex Regatta St. Thomas or the Annapolis Yacht Club Spring IRC regatta must be sailed at the owner’s choice to complete the series.

Racing will be by individual entry and by teams representing nations, yacht clubs, or other sailing associations for both the Gulf Stream Trophy and the Gulf Stream Team Trophy. All yachts entering the series must qualify for entry in the Newport-Bermuda Race, a Category 1 offshore race for monohull yachts as defined by their Notice of Race. Professional or amateur programs are welcome.

N.Y. team wins Yngling World Championship

U.S. Sailing Team-members Sally Barkow of Chenequa, Wis.; Debbie Capozzi of Bayport, N.Y.; and Carrie Howe of Grosse Pointe, Mich., were crowned World Champions after winning the Yngling World Championship in Mondsee, Austria, in July.

The U.S. sailors defeated 33 boats to win the championship, including last year’s world champion, Trine Palludan of Denmark and Athens silver medalist Surlana Taran of the Ukraine.

Racing for the Yngling World Championship took place in Austria on a small lake in a mountainous region, making it difficult for the competitors to get accurate weather predictions. No team finished consistently within the top 10 in the first four races of the regatta.

Barkow held a nine-point lead over Sharon Ferris, Raynor Smeal and Ashley Holtum of New Zealand, who in turn were defending a two-point gap to the third place Russian team of Vlada Ilienko, Ekaterina Kovalenko and Natalia Gapanovich. The three teams finished together in the final race, with Barkow edging out Ferris to finish one place above them in eleventh, with the Russians following in 13th. Another American team, skippered by 2003 Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year Hannah Swett with crew Laura Schmidt and Melissa Purdy, finished sixth overall.

This is the second World Championship title for skipper Barkow and her crew: in 2004, the team won the ISAF Women’s World Match Racing Championship.

Three inducted into

2005 ICSA Hall of Fame

The Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association inducted three sailors into the ICSA Hall of Fame for their lifelong contributions.

Mike Horn of Woodbridge, Conn., and Islesboro, Maine, was presented with the Lifetime Service Award; Joseph J. Sullivan Jr. of New York City was recognized for Outstanding Service as a Volunteer; and George Yioulos of Novato, Calif., and Portland, Ore., was the recipient of the Student Leadership Award.