The 38th Annual Fort Lauderdale to Key West Race official results are in! A determined Osita crossed the finish line at 7:15 am. The race started in 10+ knots of SE breeze, then lightened up and got shifty. Finally, for the second half of the fleet, a cold front rolled through with 30+ knot out of the N seen by several of the competitors. Thirty two boats started the race, while twenty six sailed to the finish. Bella Mente, Hap Fauth’s Mini Maxi was first across the line for an IRC class win and sailed only 160.9nm on a 160nm course, which earned them the “Best Overall Performance” Award as well. See all the final race results here.
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There is one more SORC event this season: the 2013 Pineapple Cup Montego Bay Race starting February 8, 2013.
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Place, Yacht Name, Yacht Type, Owner/Skipper, City, State, Country, Results, Total Points
Ft. Lauderdale-Key West – IRC Course
IRC (IRC – 8 Boats)
1. Bella Mente, Judel-Vrolijk Mini Maxi, Hap Fauth , Minneapolis, MN, USA, 1; 1
2. SPOOKIE, Carkeek HP 40, Steve & Heidi Benjamin , Norwalk, CT, USA, 2; 2
3. Decision, HPR Carkeek 40, Stephen Murray , New Orleans, LA, USA, 3; 3
4. Rebecca, J 120, Glenn Gault , League City, TX, USA, 4; 4
5. Thin Ice, Aerodyne 38, Stuart Hebb / John Vincent , Coral Gables, FL, USA, 5; 5
6. Arethusa, Swan 42, Phil Lotz , Newport, RI, USA, 6; 6
7. Rim Shot, Beneteau First 36.7, Russell Dunn , Hollywood, FL, USA, 7; 7
8. Dragon, Class 40, Michael Hennessy , New York, NY, USA, 8; 8
Ft. Lauderdale-Key West – PHRF Course
PHRF A (PHRF – 7 Boats)
1. Different Drummer, Cape Bay Fast 40, Frank Atkinson , West Palm Beach, FL, USA, 1; 1
2. Teamwork, J 122, Robin Team , Lexington, NC, USA, 2; 2
3. Loki, J 105, David Bond , Miami, FL, USA, 3; 3
4. Main Squeeze, Tripp 33, Eamonn deLisser / James Bill , Coral Gables, FL, USA, 4; 4
5. Constellation, Nautor Swan 48-1, Greg Petrat , Sarasota, FL, USA, 5; 5
6. Batucada, Schock 35, Cornelius Sanders , Miami, FL, USA, 6; 6
7. Ace, Cutter 65, Frank Pingitore , Miami , FL, USA, 8/DNF; 8
PHRF B (PHRF – 6 Boats)
1. Mirage, Hobie 33, Christian Schaumloffel , Virginia Beach, VA, USA, 1; 1
2. Bandana, Oyster 48, David Wallace , Ft. Lauderdale, FL, USA, 2; 2
3. Commotion, Beneteau 461, Ross Hunton , Coral Springs, FL, USA, 3; 3
4. Walloon, C&C 35 Mark I, Com. Richard D. Grow , Palm Beach , FL, USA, 7/DNF; 7
5. Sempre Amantes, Hunter Pasage 42, Colin Whittaker , Margate, FL, USA, 7/DNF; 7
6. Soap Opera, Hobie 33, Scott Self , Rockwall, TX, USA, 7/DNS; 7
PHRF C (PHRF – 7 Boats)
1. Sunquest, Sloop, Wilfredo Paredes , Miami, FL, USA, 1; 1
2. Susimi, Sweden 370, Michael Carrington , Lighthouse Point, FL, USA, 2; 2
3. Grand Cru, Beneteau 393, Danny Escobar , Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA, 3; 3
4. Vendaval, Dufour 34, Oscar Valdes , Miami Lakes, FL, USA, 4; 4
5. Osita, Tartan 40, Becky Lyons , Miami, FL, USA, 5; 5
6. Passion, Catalina 34, Brett Grover , Jesup, GA, USA, 8/DNS; 8
7. Kokomo, Swan 36, Brad Lonstein , Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA, 8/DNS; 8
Ft. Lauderdale-Key West – PHRF Multihull Course
Multihull A (PHRF – 7 Boats)
1. Elvis, Gunboat, Jason Carroll , New York, NY, USA, 1; 1
2. Sundog, Seacart 30, Paul Parks , Shady Side, MD, USA, 2; 2
3. Flight Simulator, Corsair 28R, Tom Reese , Youngstown, NY, USA, 3; 3
4. Tri-Vector, Dragonfly 35, David Otto , Miami Beach, FL, USA, 4; 4
5. Double Trouble, Catana 58, Don Balthaser , Ft. Lauderdale, FL, USA, 8/DNF; 8
6. Brake Aweigh, Trimaran, Richard VandeBrake , Lowell, MI, USA, 8/DNF; 8
7. CatNip, Catamaran 35, Victor Mendelsohn , Miami, FL, USA, 8/DNF; 8
With three races conducted in strong winds, there was opportunity for boats to make a significant move in the standings on the second day of Quantum Key West 2012. Or in some cases it was a chance to further increase leads taken on Day 1. Pisces fit into the former category, moving into the overall lead in Melges 32 class by winning two of three races on Tuesday. Skipper Benjamin Schwartz and company showed superb boat speed and made some sound tactical decisions and now lead the 19-boat fleet by tiebreaker over John Kilroy and the Samba Pa Ti team. “We are a new program so it is a tremendous feeling to be doing well in a big-time regatta like Key West. Hopefully, we can keep it going,” said Schwartz, who joined the class last summer and promptly placed fourth at U.S. Nationals. Schwartz has America’s Cup veteran Ed Baird calling tactics and Quantum professional Scott Nixon trimming the jib and spinnaker. “You have to give Ed and Scott a lot of credit for getting our boat up to speed,” he said. “I’m fortunate to have a great crew. Today was very challenging because the wind velocity was up and down and the sea state was not very forgiving, but the guys never stopped working and we were able to change gears pretty well.” Race committees on all three courses completed three races in 8-14 knot easterly winds.
With five races in the bag, organizers with Premiere Racing are already halfway to the stated goal of holding 10 races during the five-day regatta. There was a lead change in the Farr 40 class as well with Charisma (Nico Poons, Monaco) and Struntje Light (Wolfgang Schaefer, Germany) overtaking Groovederci (John Demourkas, Santa Barbara, Cal.). Struntje Light has posted a pair of seconds and finished no lower than fourth in the seven-boat fleet, but Charisma holds the overall lead via tiebreaker by virtue of winning Race 5. “We had a very good day on the water and are happy with where we stand at the moment,” Schaefer said. “We have nice boat speed upwind and our crew work has been excellent. We have a very good tactician and he’s made some fantastic calls that have kept me in phase.” Renowned Italian professional and America’s Cup veteran Vasco Vascotta is calling tactics aboard Struntje Light, which has competed in Farr 40 class at Key West ever since 2002 with a top finish of third. “Wolfgang is doing a good job of driving and is getting better every day. The guys onboard have a great attitude and are ready to fight to the end. The good news is that we can still improve our performance.” PowerPlay lived up to its name by making a strong move in IRC 2 class with a strong line of 1-3-4 on Tuesday. Owner Peter Cunningham, a resident of Georgetown in the Cayman Islands, has a nice mix of amateur and professional crew with tactician Tony Rey, trimmer Dave Scott and bowman Geordie Shaver among the superstars aboard. “We’ve only had the boat for six months and we’ve made a lot of modifications during that time,” Cunningham said. “We’re pretty happy with our performance so far. We’re sailing fairly well and having a lot of fun.” Quantum Racing, skippered by Doug DeVos, continues to set the pace in the 52-foot class and leads PowerPlay by six points. Terry Hutchinson, helmsman for the Swedish syndicate Artemis Racing that is Challenge of Record for the America’s Cup, has made strong tactical calls in leading Quantum to victory in three races and second in the two others. “Today was far from straightforward. The wind was very shifty and there are some tricky current patches to deal with,” Hutchinson said. In other classes, the three-race day merely served as an opportunity for the early leaders to extend on the competition.
Ran, a Judel-Vrolijk 72-footer, continues to sail impressively in the Mini Maxi class (IRC 1), winning all five races so far. Red, skippered by Joe Woods of Great Britain with Paul Goodison aboard as tactician, has accomplished the same feat in the inaugural Farr 400 class. “I guess we’ve just figured the boat out a little faster than the other teams,” said Woods, who has previously sailed a Melges 32 at Key West. “We’re winning, but not by much. The racing has been awfully close.” West Marine Rigging/New England Ropes has posted straight bullets in Melges 24 class and built a commanding 10-point lead over Alan Field and the WTF team. Detroit resident Bora Gulari is steering and getting tactical advice from Australian native and North Sails pro Jeremy Wilmot as West Marine Rigging/New England Ropes seeks to follow up on its 2011 national championship. Groovederci, skippered by Deneen Demourkas of Santa Barbara, Cal., has won all five races in Farr 30 class. Teamwork, a J/122 owned by Robin Team of Lexington, N.C., has posted two bullets and a pair of seconds in grabbing a narrow one-point lead over the 1D35 Tres Hombres in PHRF 1. “We’re having a great time because the conditions have been terrific and the competition has been spectacular,” said Team, who has his brother and two sons in the crew. “We’ve been mixing it up with Tres Hombres and finished overlapped with them in the first two races today. Rush is also tough so I think it will be a dogfight the whole way.” Rush, a J/109 skippered by Bill Sweetser of Annapolis, was named Lewmar / Navtec Boat of the Day after posting a superb score line of 3-2-1. Tom Babel is calling tactics while Quantum pro Tad Hutchins is calling tactics on Rush, which is currently third in PHRF 1 and second in the J/Boats Subclass. “The conditions were very good for us today. When the wind is 14 knots or less we can fly our big jib, which is kind of like our secret weapon,” Sweetser said. “We pay for that jib in our rating so it’s good whenever we can use it.” It’s been close but no cigar for Rush at Key West as Sweetser’s boat has finished first or second in class several times, but never come away as overall winner at week’s end. “One of these years we’re going to finally break through and it’s going to be wonderful,” he said. Regatta dates are January 15 – 20, 2012.
For more Key West Race Week photos by Tim Wilkes check out Tim Wilkes Photography
David Raison has won the singlehanded Transat 650 on his innovative boat TeamWork Evolution. His achievement will be a milestone in the world of yacht racing.
In completely contrary conditions to the prior weekend, 55 boats set off for Key West from Fort Lauderdale, Florida in 72 degrees and a light northerly breeze. As forecast, the wind is creating a ‘jibefest’ for the boats heading in a south westerly direction, basically dead down wind. The navigators will work now to keep their boat along a pretty narrow line, between the Gulf Stream to the left and the coral reefs to the right. “Slow or Stop,” are the options to the sides of the course, neither of which is desirable. Everyone loves to watch the big sexy boats, and the eye candy was certainly there at the start today. Rambler, Privateer, Bella Mente and several others in the IRC A fleet were gunning for the pin end and causing a lot of bad air to swirl around for the slightly smaller IRC B boats as they started together. Several of the boats in the fleet are posting to the race blog linked here: www.keywestrace.org. The lower keys are showing a bit more breeze, but it looks like the boats will finish a little later in the morning than we first thought.
The Fort Lauderdale to Key West race 35th edition is all set to start Wednesday with a full line up old favorites and newcomers. With 55 boats signed up, the race committee is seeing it’s biggest numbers in the past 15 years.
All competitiors are hopeful for a shot at this year’s overall and division trophies of this 160nm sprint, including Privateer, Bella Mente Vela Veloce, Rambler, and S. Florida local favorites like Pineapple Cup winner Thin Ice and PHRF Key West winner Primal Scream.
Hap Fauth’s R/P 69 “Belle Mente” and Richard Oland’s R/P 52 “Vela Veloce” are both hopefuls for a shot at the course record (10 hours, 24 minutes and 2 seconds) set in 2005 by another Reichel Pugh boat, the 81 foot “Carrera.”
The race is starts off the coast of Ft. Lauderdale in the early afternoon of January 13th. Competitors follow the coast of Florida southwest into the night, and with a good breeze, finish in the Key West channel at dawn.
The 35th Annual Fort Lauderdale–Key West Race is hosted by the Lauderdale Yacht Club & the Storm Trysail Club, and organized & managed by the SORC Professional Race Management Team.