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Sailing - Connecticut & New York - October

Rambler wins Marblehead-Halifax race

Rambler, a 90-foot Reichel Pugh, won line honors in the Marblehead to Halifax Ocean Race and finished first in the IRC 1 class.

Rambler averaged 10 knots - with the highest being 14 knots and the lowest 2.5 knots - on its way to line honors in the Marblehead to Halifax Ocean Race.

“The key to our strategy was staying offshore,” says George David, owner and skipper. “Your perspective certainly changes when you are in a boat of our size as this enabled us to eat up the ocean miles. I have great admiration for the smaller boats that will likely be out there for a couple of days.”

The X-41 Sarah topped the IRC 2 fleet. Donnybrook won PHRF-1 and Nick Halmos and Alex Mehran’s Owen-Clarke Class 40 Cutlass finished first in PHRF-2. The J-35 Harrier won PHRF-3.

The race was a relatively slow tactical affair, contested in predominantly light downwind conditions until the last 24 hours when the breeze filled in from the east resulting in a beat for the last third of the race for the fleet behind Rambler.

Arethusa wins NYYC Swan 42 Nationals

Phil Lotz’s Arethusa won the NYYC Swan 42 Nationals on the final day in the final two races. He passed Andy Fisher’s Bandit, which has dominated the regatta since the first race. Arethusa scored 50 points to Bandit’s 57. In third place was Alex Jackson’s Amelia with Malcolm Gefter’s Celeritas in fourth, and Austin and Gwen Fragomen’s Interlodge in fifth. The NYYC Swan 42 Nationals, held July 16-19, hosted 20 boats at the club’s Harbour Court clubhouse.

For Lotz, consistency carried the day. He notched a second in the final race, saving his best for last, and four fourths. His worst placing was seventh.

On the strength of his performance here and in the NYYC’s 155th annual regatta, presented by Rolex, Lotz will also represent the club in the NYYC Invitational Cup, set to take place Sept. 15-19 in Newport, R.I. It will feature world-class, Corinthian sailing among 19 yacht-club teams from 14 nations aboard these one-design NYYC Swan 42s. Racing in the New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup will take place on Narragansett Bay and Rhode Island Sound.

Manhasset Bay club tops English group

For four days in July, Manhasset Bay Yacht Club and the Manhasset Bay One Design fleet hosted teams from the Royal Burnham Yacht Club in England. These two one-design racers have been team-racing against each other since 1992, and this most recent race celebrated their 10th meeting.

After a practice race, the Brits warmed up to the boat winning the first race. The Americans took the next two races, ending the day with a score of 2-1.

The racing was close, competitive and the mark roundings were wild. By midday, MBOD had won all three races and potentially the event, but there were several protests pending. In the end, the MBODers were victorious. A rematch is planned for England in a couple years.

Tunnicliffe takes bronze in Laser Radial

U.S. Sailing Team AlphaGraphics member Anna Tunnicliffe of Plantation, Fla., wrestled a week of wind and waves to win a bronze medal at the 2009 Laser Radial world championship in Karatsu, Japan.

In typical Tunnicliffe fashion, the ISAF Sailing World Cup leader sailed a consistently strong regatta, scoring in the top five in eight of 12 races. The battle for silver and bronze came down to the last race: Tunnicliffe and France’s Sophie de Turckheim scored fourth and third, respectively, which resulted in de Turckheim securing the silver medal. Finland’s Sari Multala won the regatta and was named the 2009 world champion.

Anna Tunnicliffe, who won a gold medal in Beijing, battled her way to a bronze medal at the 2009 Laser Radial world championship in Karatsu, Japan.

“Port tack was a relatively flat tack to sail on, but you had to hike hard to keep your lane out to the right corner,” Tunnicliffe says. “Starboard tack into the mark, however, was into the waves and meant that you had to torque very hard on every wave to stay up to speed. With the small chop on top of the swell that we had, it was a great workout.”

Many Team USA sailors fell ill during the regatta, including Paige Railey who suffered from a stomach bug and bronchitis. U.S. Sailing U-23 members Sarah Lihan of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and Claire Dennis of Saratoga, Calif., finished 16th in the gold fleet and second in the silver fleet, respectively. Other Americans who competed were Catherine Chimney, Anne Haeger, Margaret Love and Erika Reineke.

This article originally appeared in the Connecticut & New York Home Waters Section of the October 2009 issue.