Timothy Chin wins Flying Tiger class.
SAN DIEGO — The third and final day of the 2017 Yachting Cup concluded May 7 with a change of course due to more atypical San Diego weather. Race Committee decided early on the final day to change all courses from the ocean to inside the San Diego Bay where waters were much calmer.
All of the boats sailing the Near Roads course on May 6 sailed in the South Bay and all the boats sailing the previous in the Middle and Far Roads courses sailed Sunday in the North Bay. All of the fleets sailed course 1 which was 7.28nm except the Pac52s and the Division AA boats. These bigger boats sailed course 2 which totaled 10.53nm.
After an hour delay, the first races started at 12:30 p.m. in a steady drizzle with wind speeds reaching 14+ knots in certain parts of the course. Race Committee on the South Bay course was able to complete two races, but the North Bay course was not as lucky. Shortly after 2:00 p.m. when Race Committee on the North Bay started the second race, a line of squalls came in with heavy rain and wind, forcing Race Committee to abandon the second race in the North Bay.
Through these undesirable conditions, Tim Fuller on the J/125 Resolute had a strong weekend and finished Sunday as the PHRF Division A winner.
“The day was wet! The conditions were very shifty and the rain made it very challenging, but it worked out well for us. It was saner today than yesterday. We did well this weekend because we had clean starts and focused on maintaining a balance between speed and point,” Fuller said.
Fuller, no stranger to this event, was the Yachting Cup overall winner in 2013.
“This race is the premiere race in Southern California for PHRF Handicap sailing. I’d say it’s equal to the Big Boat Series in San Francisco,” he added.
John Laun, another former Yachting Cup overall winner, placed second in the J/120 class this year on caper.
“We saw a little bit of everything this weekend, with the worst of it on Saturday. We broke a halyard, which led to some drama, but we survived it and won that race which was a testament to the crew being ready to do nonstandard stuff quickly,” Laun said. “They really came through in a clutch.”
With tight competition at the top of the J/120 fleet, CC Rider pulled off the win, but Laun still had a positive outlook on the day.
“It was a fun race and the breeze held. It wasn’t nearly as exciting as the second race, which wasn’t finished because a squall came through. It was just heinous for a while and then there was no wind,” Laun said.
Though all the sailors out there can confirm conditions were insane for San Diego, it didn’t stop Rick Goebel and his crew on Sanity from winning the J/105 class and the overall regatta. In addition to winning every race this weekend, Goebel was also named the Yachting Cup Overall winner in 2014.
“We really had a great regatta, especially in the heavy air,” Goebel said. “We go up to the Big Boat Series every three or four years so we are really set up for heavy air and we have a great heavy air crew. Only two of the crewmembers have changed since we last won Yachting Cup, so we are basically the same group. This year was really tough, but to win it this year was fantastic.”
The Flying Tiger class winner, Timothy Chin, has been racing in Yachting Cup every year since he first bought his Flying Tiger, Abacus, 11 years ago.
“Today we had a good start, stayed high on the course and set the kites in the right places. We worked out a lead on the downwind legs, stayed close to the North Island and put some distance between us and the second boat,” Chin said.
Chin was one of the “double winners,” those who were able to figure out that they won and speedily make their way back to the dock before the skies opened up.
“We won the fifth race and decided to retire from the sixth race because we got our points in already. We came back, put the boat cover on, and after that it dumped,” Chin said.
For the first time in 11 years of racing this event, this year was the first time Chin won the Flying Tiger class. Chin plans to keep racing in Yachting Cup in the future.
Bronny Daniels photo