2000 Santana 20 National Championships

World Class Sailors Vie for Championship Trophy in 2000 Nationals in Newport Beach, CA


38 Boats Compete in One of the Most Competitive Nationals in the Santana 20 Class.


1st Place - "Head First" - Willem Van Waay/Travis Wilson/Peter Van Waay

2nd Place - "Mini-me" - Bruce Golison/Steve Washburn/Ron Rosenberg

3rd Place - "Hitched" - Kerry Poe/Kent Sisk/Keith Hammer

Click Here to See Full Results

Winner's Photos More Photos  And Even More Photos from Balboa YC

Participating Boats

MudFlap Girl Update!

Race Summary

by Roberto Cordero


"Leeward Crowd" Photo Courtesy of by Mary Longpre

Waiting for the Next Race. Photo Courtesy of by Mary Longpre

Day 1 - August 16, 2000

Competitor's Meeting - Jim Jackman on the Horn.

This beautiful day in Newport Beach  had an interesting start. When the 38 competitors headed to the  ocean race course, the departing fleet was met in the harbor by a large powerboat headed back to port. It had the name "Sexual Chocolate" painted in large letters on its side. Some of the S20's came close to it and was surprised to come face to face with Dennis Rodman accompanied by two young women... But enough with the distractions and let's get back to the racing.

Heading out to the race course

The first race was scheduled to start at 12 noon. The wind started out westerly by race time but it was slowly moving south. The Santana 20 fleet was surprisingly aggressive during the first start and the race committee had to call two general recalls. In between starts,  the race course had to be reshuffled due to the shifting wind and the long delay served to settle everybody down. Part of the problem causing the difficulty with the starts, according to some, was due to the initially short start line and the shifting wind which was over favoring the boat end. Finally the third start was successful...for most. Still, several boats were over the line and had to restart. This race was won by Willem Van Waay.

Race Committee In Between Starts

The second race had a more orderly start and the wind remained light but many sailors became more comfortable with the conditions. This race was won by Bruce Golison.

The wind was generally light all day with slowly building chop. Here's where a little debate began. To the ocean sailors, the chop was described as very light. The lake and bay sailors, however, found the chop disorienting and heavy. There were constant 20 degree windshifts throughout the day but the wind settled in somewhere near 235 degrees which is the most common wind direction in the Southern California coast.

By 4:00 pm, the race committee was trying to decide if a third race should be started but loud protests could be heard from a distance from many boats who wanted to head back. Finally the postpone-to-next-day flag was raised and everybody headed back to Balboa Yacht Club for the parties.

For the evening festivities, a Tug Boat named "William B" took the S20 racers on a cruise of Newport Harbor. Later this boat docked at the yacht club and was later joined by Tom Schock's big motor boat and dinner was served and the party continued.

Day 2 - August 17, 2000

Newport Beach showed off its wind today. Winds starting at 10 knots early in the day were blowing to near 15 knots by late afternoon. Unlike the first day, today's wind was southerly at a heading of 160 degrees which stuck at this general heading for most of the day. Together with bigger chop and occasional high rollers, today's races required some skill at keeping boats flat and handling the pounding waves. It was "wild and wooly"..."wire to wire"..."spectacular racing...", as they say in New Zealand.

Three races were held today. The extra race was added to compensate for the missing third race that was planned yesterday. Racing started at 12 noon on a race course over an hour away from the Yacht club. This course was much further away then yesterday's course and after the racing, most boats did not get back to the yacht club until 6:00 pm.

Unlike yesterday's aggressive starts, the fear of the I-Flag kept everyone in check and surprisingly, not a single boat was called over the line in three races. Still, starts were crowded; even on the line that was usually fairly evenly favored from boat to pin end.  The offset mark at the windward mark and the leeward gate served to spread the fleet around what would otherwise be an uncontrollable traffic jam. It was interesting to watch a parade of 20 starboard tackers on the layline to the windward mark screaming "STARBOARD!" at the incoming port tackers. However, the Santana 20 fleet is well known for having nicer people in the class and protests and other shows of anger were kept to a minimum. Everybody referred to this championship series as "Fair Racing".

It was a very competitive series and, today, many of the top sailors who did not do as well yesterday, climbed up the rankings and slowly pushed their way upwards. Overall, the list of  top sailors in this regatta was amazing. With just about every sailmaker represented, and including our boatbuilder, marine pros, and long time Santana 20 racers, it was an absolute show of force of top level racing in our active class. The rest of us (you all know who you are) were watching the racing from the back so we are relying on the top finishers to pass along some interesting stories of play by plays of the tight racing among the top boats.

The winners today were Golison on the first race, Van Waay on the second race, and Gordon Wanlass on Gremlin on the third race. Gordon has been one of the upcoming stars and has moved up to the top levels of the fleet in many regattas this year.

All in all, this day was a lot of hard work. But at least the wind was not unreasonably brisk and in spite of the medium chop, we did not witness any boat that was not in control. No death-rolls today...Still, this was a great experience for the non-ocean sailors since this represented typical Southern California ocean racing conditions. Weary sailors probably need a good rest tonight...More racing tommorrow.

In addition to the racing, the Santana Class Association had its annual meeting prior to the race today and  new class officers have been elected. Minutes and other class decisions will be published later.

2001 Nationals will be held in Eugene, Oregon

2002 Nationals will be held in Marina Del Rey, California

2003 Nationals will be held in Huntington Lake, California.


Day 3 - August 18, 2000

Willhelm VanWaay is now the new Santana Class Champion for 2000! Bruce Golison came in second place. This year, new names have appeared at the top of the list of winners. Bruce Golison, who is the organizer of the Golison Race Week, a previous J24 champion and world class sailor returned to the Santana 20 Class, which he said he raced 20 years ago. The rest of the top ten awards were given to the usual top sailors in the fleet.  Here's a complete list of award winners (crew members were added when known):

(1) Willhelm Van Waay, Travis Wilson, Peter Van Waay 

(2) Bruce Golison (Golison Race Week), Stephen Washburn

(3) Kerry Poe (North Sails)

(4) Mike Pinckney

(5) Yumio Dornberg (Formerly North Sails)

(6) Chris Winnard (North Sails)/Andrew Kerr (J Worlds/North Sails)

(7) Rick Harris, Harry Pattison (Pattison Sails, 5 time S20 Champion)

(8) Gordon Wanlass  

(9) Tom Schock (WD Schock)

(10) Peter Hunter  


Boats at the Dock Just before the Races

This was indeed one of the most competitive class championships in a long time. First of all, the large number of boats (38 boats competing), was filled with more world class sailors than ever before, possibly in this decade. It was a tough race and very hard climb up to middle of the fleet. Marine professionals and sailmakers made up most of the top half.

A full seven races were completed in this regatta and the race committee did a fabulous job of handling the entire championship series. Yes, there was a bit of grumbling about the race course location from many locals during the first race but, then again, there was no guarantee that wind would have been better if the race course were moved that day.

The third day of racing was conducted in light winds between 5-10 knots. The wind oscillated around 190 degrees for most of the day. It was mostly light stuff though and clear air was paramount. Once again, today, the waves were bigger than the winds and many boats had problems getting their boatspeed up once they were gassed. The starts were difficult as the first 5 minutes of the race was spent by many boats tacking back and forth looking for a clear lane; a rare commodity from the second row on. The fear of the I-Flag minimized the number of boats over the line and the race committee biased the start line evenly enough so the boats were spread out. Even then, the start line looked too short to some.

But the leaders were consistent. They found the groove and stuck to it. Most of the top ten remained at the top for the rest of the series.

All in all, this was a fabulous racing day and a very nice close to what participants consider to be a very successful Class Championship Regatta. Many thanks to the organizers of this regatta in Fleet 2, particularly the Event Chairman - Jim Jackman and to the Balboa Yacht Club. Jim acknowledged that there a few minor glitches along the way, but I don't think anyone really remembers any of that. Instead, each of the 38 competitors go home to their respective fleets with a feeling of accomplishment and a lot of lessons learned.

Some general observations can be made about this National Championship Regatta, which reflect the strength of this class:

Congratulations to the winners! The top ten boats received an award for each crew member. Good job and see you in Eugene, Oregon in 2001.

Messages and Comments:

*** Special Announcement ***

Chris Winnard, found his Battle Flag (Mud Flap Girl) missing last night. He said it was replaced by a sheet! We will give you updates of this continuing saga...

EMAIL FROM BYC (Aug. 19, 2000)

RE: Disaster Area's Mudflap Girl.  Actually, she was not kidnapped, as reported by President Kline at the Awards Banquet.  A letter was left at the Front Desk of Balboa Yacht Club before the Annual Meeting for Disaster Area,  and was delivered at the conclusion.  It was sealed with a kiss, and - sadly  for Mr. Winnard - it was a "Dear Chris" letter.  I had an opportunity to photocopy it while he was in anguish, and it said "Yo Dudes, It's been a great time but it is time to move on. I will send postcards on my world tour.
Love, the mudflap girl".  And as for the mysterious replacement battleflag,  please correct it to a "sheep", which had been preceeded by a ducky and a cow. 

Webmaster - Does anybody have a picture of this?

RE: High level of competition:  We also hosted a cross-channel swimmer!
(Although this was the week of the water-ski races to Catalina Island)  Jim McBride tested the balmy sea temperature, but was disqualified for illegal assistance (holding on to a jib sheet).  Mat Bryant put his advanced degree in physics in play, and after some effort was able to reinstate Mr. McBride  to a spot on a racing sailboat.  Cross-training at it's finest!