Santana 20 National Championships – report by Andrew Kerr.
year, Nationals was held on Huntington Lake from July 14th
to the 18th with the High Sierra regattas both the
preceding and following weekends.
18 S20’s entered the High Sierra regatta and used it as
a very effective tune up event for the Nationals. This was a
time for teams to research the lake and get as much valuable
practice as they could.
those who have not been to Huntington Lake, it is one of the
most picturesque venues in the country. Tall trees, clean flat
water and a fairly clockwork like wind that comes in at 10:30 in
the morning. It is
an ideal place for a vacation- quiet, relaxing and with plenty
to do for those not sailing – hiking, biking, jet skiing,
visits to the hot springs, Yosemite park and more are some of
the many attractions.
year celebrated the 50th anniversary of the high
Sierra regatta, which is run by Fresno YC and featured 3 races
over the course of the weekend. With local knowledge saying to
sail to the Boy Scout camp on the left shoreline the fleet
fought hard for a pole position on the left side of the starting
line. The big challenge of the weekend was negotiating the
windward mark, which was located at the top of the lake just
past the dam. At the top of the lake the wind faded and shifted
all around catching many teams unaware of the holes and shifts.
veterans Charles Witcher/ Sherron Hart and Charlie Hess from
Fleet 12 on Folsom lake gave the fleet a clinic on sailing the
shifts and the velocity and won both races – the first race
win was by a huge margin while the rest of us battled for clear
air on the zig zag course down the lake.
time Olympian Charlie Ogletree and his team of UC Irvine coach
Mike Pinckney and WD Schock dealer and lido 14 champ John
Papadapolous on “ Cal trans” were scored OCS in race #2
which hurt there chances for the regatta- they did win the
marathon 3rd race on Sunday showing impressive speed
top 5 Results for the 50th High Sierra regatta were:
– “ Aggressive tendencies” - Charles Witcher/ Sherron Hart
/ Charlie Hess
– “ Mini Me”- Bruce Golison / Andrew Kerr/ Bill
“ Gremlin” – Gordon Wanlass/ John Andrew
– “ Head First” – Willem van Waay, Travis Wilson, Peter
- #587 – Craig Lee and team.
Wanlass team and Craig Lee’s team both showed good form in
this event – both of them veterans of Huntington Lake regattas
of the past.
racing on the Sunday the fleet gathered at the Fleet 12 welcome
site and discussed the day’s racing in a format that was
moderated by Andrew Kerr. This get together was very well
attended and well received as different team members talked
about what they saw out on the water. The fleet also enjoyed
some great post race socializing and it was great for everyone
to renew old friendships and make new ones.
was the first day on the Nationals schedule with teams starting
to arrive more in force. 28 Boats were registered for the
Nationals with teams from Canada, Oklahoma, Colorado, Oregon and
road warrior teams were Rob Avery and his team from Canada,
Britt Williams and his team from Tulsa, Oklahoma and Tim Dunton
and his team from Cherry Creek, Colorado. A big thank you to
these teams for making this great effort to participate – it
really makes for a great class.
organizers of the regatta – Fleet 12 - Sacramento, Fleet 5 –
San Joaquin valley and the Fresno YC did a superb job of
greeting, registering and measuring.
organizer had a bright orange event staff shirt on which was a
great for the participants as you could easily get a question
answered if you needed it. The whole day went extremely smoothly
and is a credit to a lot of hard preparation work by our hosts.
called for more registration, a seminar led by Andrew Kerr at
the lodge, then two practice races, a get together debrief of
the races afterward, the annual class meeting and then a social
get together at the fleet 12 welcome site.
practice races were held in a perfect 8 to 12 knot breeze with
some very competitive starts. Class founders Tom and Jane Schock
came out to watch and were also on hand at the debriefing/ post
race discussion to offer advice. Tom’s first event on
Huntington Lake was the High Sierra regatta of 1954 and it is
one of his most favorite venues in sailing.
seminar was very well attended and featured a lot of great
questions and different perspectives from different teams. We
continued this theme at the post race discussion and this proved
very popular and well attended.
class meeting featured the election of a new board and the class
expressed its appreciation for the hard work done by the
2004-elected board members were:
– Phillip Infelise, (Denver, CO. / Long Beach, CA).
President – Mark Forrest, (Eugene, Oregon)
– Gordon Wanlass, (Newport Beach, CA)
– Fred Luvisi, (Newport Beach, CA)
Regional Director – Kris Cardwell, (Sacramento, CA)
regional Director – Edith Collins, (Atlanta, GA.).
the meeting San Diego fleet 7’s Ellen Schmidt and her “
Purple Haze” team cooked up excellent fajitas for the fleet
and the group also enjoyed a donated keg of Samuel Adams beer.
Thank you Ellen and the sponsors!
racing featured 3 windward / leeward races of various lengths
with the subsequent race to be started 15 minutes after the last
boat finished. The starting line was fast and furious with
crowds of boats everywhere to be found. The strategy (formula)
of the day was to get off the line clean with a good lane and
head to the left shoreline and then pick the right time to tack
in the shifts and velocity before then making the final approach
to the mark which was on the other side of the lake. The action
was non-stop with all of the teams working overtime to keep the
boat going fast and shifting gears non-stop in the puffs and
lulls. On this day no one did it better than the Ogletree/
Pinckney/ Papadopolous team who managed to win all 3 races and
cement an early lead in the regatta.
Golison/ Kerr/ Ramacciotti team on “ Mini Me” overcame two
OCS starts to post a 2nd, 9th and 5th
while the Witcher/ Hart/ Hess team posted a very steady 3rd,
4th, 3rd day and the van Waay/Wilson/ van Waay team recovered
from a first race 7th to also post two very good 2nd’s.
were many notable performances this day – one in particular
was Ross Cooley and his team of Laura Zane and Rick Gilstrap
from Eugene on “ Joreanne” who posted all top 10 finishes in
the demanding conditions. Another notable performance was the
downwind speed of the team led by class veteran skipper Ron Fish
with Jerald Skeen (a former Daysailer Champion) in the middle
and Leeanne Fish on the bow calling the breeze. This team would
round the weather mark in the 20’s and be in single digits by
the leeward mark!
two on the Thursday featured more tactical posers with the right
shore very occasionally paying dividends for those who ventured
there at the right time. The key element was for the team to
stay aware at all times and be constantly making adjustments to
keep the boat moving fast.
team on “ Mini Me” led the first race all the way around
only to passed by “ Head First” and “ Cal Trans” on the
second beat and that was the finishing order. In the second race
of the day “ Mini Me” held the lead from wire to wire with
“ Head First” just edging out “Aggressive Tendencies”
for 2nd. “Cal Trans” won the third race with Ron
Fish and team sailing a great race to take 2nd and
“ Aggressive Tendencies” 3rd.
left shift on the latter part of the run to the finish line put
“ Head First” in 10th for the race and set up a
tight battle for 2nd with “Mini Me” and “
Aggressive Tendencies”. The team on “ Cal trans” held a
commanding lead – but in this sport one can never say never
with possibilities abound. The bottom line though was that
Charlie’s team was too talented and experienced to give away
12 points in one race – but that certainly did not deter the 2nd
and 3rd placed teams.
night the class held the annual banquet at the resort lodge with
great food and many a story told of fortunes won and lost on the
Infelise was deservedly awarded the class service trophy, (the
Kerr perpetual) for his outstanding services to the class-
congratulations and thank you Phillip from all of us. It was a
great evening that everyone seemed to thoroughly enjoy.
Both Allan Shedd and Edith Collins ( the regatta’s
Chief Judge) were in attendance from Atlanta and it was great to
last day of racing had one long penultimate race for the fleet
– “ Mini Me” was OCS again but recovered extremely quickly
in to 2nd place by finding clear air and velocity
slightly to the right of the fleet. The “ Head First” team
port tacked the fleet from the pin end (a small luff up at that
end had put “ Mini Me” over the line for the third time in
the regatta) and took the lead. “ CalTrans” took the lead
back later on in the beat as the fleet tacked it’s way up both
the second beat the wind went left 40 degrees as we saw 240
degrees on the compass and went straight up the lake. “ Cal
Trans” won the race and regatta followed by “ Head First”
and “ Mini Me”, “ Gremlin “ posted a 4th in
the race and a noteable performance was by Jeff Keenan’s team
on “Grendil” who were in the top 5 all the way to the end
before ending up a very respectable 8th.
to Charlie Ogletree, Mike Pinckney and John Papadopoulos who
sailed a terrific regatta. This same team won the 2001 Nationals
in Klamath Falls.
12, Fleet 5 and the Fresno YC did a superb job – so many
people for the class to thank – Ken & Kris Cardwell, Todd
& Barbera Craig, all of fleet 12 and 5, the Race committee
and all the volunteers, the Fresno YC, Jim Moody, Mel Morrison,
Charles Witcher and Sherron Hart for the wonderful trophies and
all the competitiors who participated to help support the class.
look forward to seeing as many class members as possible at next
years Nationals in Long Beach which will be raced inside the
break water out of Alamitos Bay Yc, the site of the 1984 Olympic
Games sailing regatta.
- “ Cal trans” – Charlie Ogletree/ Mike Pinckney/
- “ Head first” – Willem van Waay/ Travis Wilson/
Peter van Waay
- “ Mini Me” – Bruce Golison / Andrew Kerr/ Bill
- “ Aggressive tendencies” – Charles Witcher/
Sherron Hart/ Charlie Hess
- “ Altitude Sickness’- Payson Infelise/ Phillip
Infelise/ Jon Bell
- “ Gremlin” – Gordon Wanlass/ Tony Long/ John Andrew
Yikes” – Ron Fish/ Jerald Skeen/ Leeanne Fish
- “ Moon” – Ken Cardwell/ Austin Quilty/ Kris
- “ Joreanne:” – Ross Cooley/ Rick Gilstrap/ Laura
- “ Aquila” – Paul Stephens/ Drew Bauman/ David
- From Andrew Kerr
Photos - From Todd Craig