The Paul Cayard report: Celebrating 100 with Sir Durward Knowles
Saturday, December 9, 2017 8:42 AM
Three races were held today on Montague Bay of the east end of New Providence. All 25 teams were ready for the all important final day of qualifying.
The winds were challenging today ranging from 4 knots to 20 knots with 30 degree wind shifts. The US team of Mark Mendelblat and Brian Fatih continued to be the class of the regatta with scores of 4, 2, 4 seriously dominating the competition. They are fast and always on the correct side of the race track. Behind them, the British team of Paul Goodison and Frithjof Kleen sailed well to move into 5th place at the end of the day. The top four didn’t change through the day.
Phil and I sailed a bad first race…. never seemed to be able to get on the correct side of the course. In the second race, we sailed very well and even had a large lead at the first. The wind was very light on the first downwind leg and filing from behind. This caused the fleet to close in on us by the end of the leg. We got passed by 2 boats and finished 3rd. That finish was good enough to guarantee our place in tomorrows quarterfinal. In the third and final race of the day, we finished 13th. Again, there is no one who is easy to beat out there!
There are 11 Star World Champion skippers in this 25 boat fleet. Only 4 of them qualified for the quarter finals tomorrow. This says a lot about the skill and talent of the skippers coming from other classes who are invited to compete in the Star Sailors League. This is exactly the idea of the league, to have a champion of champions competition. The Star is proving to be the perfect boat for the job.
After sailing, Star Legend Sir Durward Knowles came down to the club to meet the sailors. As Sir Durward just turned 100, the Star Sailors League payed homage to him through a few short speeches and then we all sang happy birthday to him. Amongst many records and accolades, Durward is now the oldest living Olympic Champion.
Racing starts tomorrow at 11:00 EST and the forecast is for fairly breezy conditions out of the south,
Remember to follow the racing live on StarSailors.com. You can find full results, articles and photos there.