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This morning a monster storm came through and we stayed snug and dry in our new tent. Ben and I made a dash for the car in a lull but when we got there, the car – all the cars — were sitting in a pond. Since my feet were already sopping wet and I had capris on, I volunteered to get the car. I figured the puddle was just a few inches deep. Instead I went in up to the edge of my capris and my shoes practically floated off my feet! Still, I hopped in, picked up Ben and we headed to town for breakfast. We found our new favorite breakfast place, the Blue Dolphin, which has awesome breakfast food. My spinach and feta omelet was the best ever and the coffee was perfect. It must be a good place because we bumped into Jay Lott, fellow Scot sailor from Ephraim, who had discovered the spot a few days earlier. Coming back to the club, bellies full, we ran into other tent campers who were headed out to find a hot breakfast and dry off. We sent them to the Blue Dolphin.

Meanwhile, the race committee consulted the oracles and decided that the front coming in would make for unpredictable winds and that we should wait and finish the regatta on Friday. We have had five races so far, so we're in good shape. Now Ben and I will go to the Ringling Museum, where you can learn about the circus and see the amazing Ringling mansion and estate.

Some great photos from the midwinters are posted on the Florida District blog:
click here for photos

All of the photos on Picassa.

Banyan Tree at Ringling Museum

Ben and SSS cat - very friendly (the cat, that is)


Jeff Linton and Amy Smith "King
and Queen of the Flyweights"
wearing their crowns

Well, the wind gods were not interested in letting us get a last day of racing in. Friday dawned quiet and sunny and Ben and I were psyched for a day of light-wind racing. We had visions of everyone being able to participate and maybe even squeezing three races in. We were about the third boat in the water, energized by our optimism. But, sadly, as soon as our boat got to the end of the dock, WHAM!, the wind came in. It seemed like the wind went from about 3 to 18 knots in the blink of an eye and never let up. Big, fat bummer.

The wind did prompt Ben to just double check the official maximum wind guidelines, which are on the fssa.com website. They are: 20 knots with gusts to 22 or 24 miles per hour with gusts to 26. Here's the link to the word document from fssa.com: condition guidelines.

So the Sarasota Sailing Squadron put out food and handed out awards and everyone packed up their boats and hit the road. We headed north. It is 35 degrees in Illinois today. I am faced with mountains of dirty laundry, mail and work..... Sarasota, 80 degree, sunny days and Caribbean blue waters are just sweet memories.

We had several inquiries the last week about dates for the annual Glow regatta. That tells me spring, and sailing season, is around the corner and we better get crackin'. So here it is, this year's Glow will be held August 24-26 at Clinton Lake (Illinois). Other Midwest District dates that are important: June 23-29 NACs at Carlyle Lake, August 3-5 Ephraim Regatta (also Midwest Districts). We haven't heard yet the date for the Egyptian Cup or the Whale of a Sail, both at Carlyle Lake. I also have a lead on a multi-class regatta outside Indianapolis that our Flying Scot pals, Geoff and Patrick Endris, have invited their fellow Scots to. That will be some time in May, but we have not got a firm date yet on that.

That's all the news on regattas for now. We're headed to the Midwinters March 18-23 in New Orleans and I know a few other Midwesterners will be there. Keep your fingers crossed for warm weather!

The 107th annual Ephraim Regatta will also be the 2012 Flying Scot
Midwestern District Championship regatta.  Dates are August 3-5.  For more
information, keep an eye on www.eyc.org/racing.  Forty to fifty Scots are
expected (last time the EYC hosted this event, in 2005, we had fifty-four
Scots!)  The EYC is well known for quality race management and friendly
hospitality; in 2009 the EYC won U.S. Sailing's One-Design Regatta of the
Year award for hosting the Flying Scot NAC.  Our racing venue of Eagle
Harbor, Ephraim, Door County, Wisconsin is unsurpassed for clean water,
brisk winds and scenery.  Questions?  Contact regatta chairman Bjorn Hooper
bjorn@thehoopers.net  Hope to see you there!

Ben and I traveled to the Privateer Yacht Club in Chattanooga last weekend to participate in their District Championships. Two boats from that club came to our districts/Glow this year and this was an opportunity to reciprocate. Plus, it's just a really friendly club and one we get to every year, though usually in the spring. Anyway, the wind was strong both days. Probably about 18 mph, but the race committee did say one gust on Saturday measured 23.5. So, it was hard work.

We got a good start the first race and, to our utter amazement, were leading by almost a full leg by the second or third leg. Then about 10 boat lengths from the finish, Ben blurted out "I can't believe we're doing a horizon job on those guys!" Can you believe he did that?! Talk about tempting the wind gods.

And, sure enough, it couldn't have been more than three seconds later when a puff from an entirely different direction auto tacked our boat and Plop! Ben fell in the water!! I also got a nasty rope burn by my eye from the vang, but never mind that, we had to get Ben back in the boat. Luckily he managed to scramble back in the boat with a little help from me and, after some futzing around, trying to get out of irons and calm ourselves down a bit, we finished the race, still in first place. Phew!!

We had another first-place finish the second race, but we had been in third place the whole race and only with some crafty strategizing we were able to nip the other two boats by just a nose. Usually the shoe is on the other foot and we're being overtaken right at the finish, so we really enjoyed that! A third place finish in the third race and then two fourth-place finishes on Sunday dropped us to third place overall but we felt great about our performance. We very very rarely beat Rob Fowler and Scot Cline, the first place boat, or Ed Craig, the second place boat, so that was a real accomplishment.

The drive home was long, but worth it after a weekend of such great sailing!

Well, we don't have a longer post on the Glow to offer you; things got a little crazy right after that even, what with one child going to France for the semester and another starting college in California. Sorry about that! Still, you can read all about the Glow and the Whale/Egyptian/Leukemia Cup held at Carlyle Lake in the next edition of Scots N Water. We tried to submit a ton of stories so everyone will know what an active, friendly district we have!

A longer post will follow with some of the exciting details.  Suffice it to say, the conditions were perfect, the racing was very competitive, the parties were fun.  I'm pretty sure that everyone had a wonderful time.  Deb and I certainly did!

Pictures are worth 1000's of words - 

Line up at one of the starts on Saturday...

Glow II 2011 Winners, Rob Fowler and Scot Cline, who traveled all the way from Chattanooga, TN...

2011 Midwest District Champions, Ryan Malmgren and Amy Novak...

Photos above by Doug Williams.  Here is a link to all of Doug's photos from the regatta posted on Flickr:  CLICK HERE TO GO TO THE PHOTOS

I am posting below the results for Glow and the Districts which were combined this year.  The results differ because we had some sailors from other districts competing in the Glow regatta.

2011 Glow II Regatta



Pos Sail Skipper Crew 1 /
Crew 2
R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 Total
1 5152 Rob Fowler Scot Cline 1 1 1 3 3 9
2 5622 Ryan Malmgren Amy Novak 2 2 5 5 1 15
3 5897 Ben Williams Deb Aronson 5 4 4 2 4 19
4 5015 Frank Gerry Marianne Gerry 6 5 6 1 2 20
5 5150 Larry Klick James Williams 7 6 2 6 6 27
6 2512 Randy Adolphs Kasi Rekoske 3 8 12 4 8 35
7 4788 Charles Howting Luthor Torgerson 4 7 10 8 9 38
8 5892 Bill Vogler Deb Torgerson 8 9 3 9 10 39
9 5551 Christopher Wright Jon Wright 9 3 7 18 OCS 5 42
10 5404 Jack McClurkin Dan Lopionski 12 13 15 7 7 54
11 3204 Stephen Grossman Eric Grossman 11 15 8 11 11 56
12 5631 Eric Bussell Rod Bussell 18 14 11 12 13 68
13 5356 Bill Humphries Linda Lind 10 10 9 21 21 71
14 5927 Dave Sherwood Emory Luth 16 12 14 16 15 73
15 4278 Geoff Endris Patrick Endris 15 18 16 14 12 75
16 5638 Felicia Bamer Linda Tatum /
Adam Benson
13 17 13 15 18 76
17 2695 Walter Barniskis Michael Barniskis 19 16 20 10 14 79
18 3683 Hugh Roberstson Christina 14 11 17 21 21 84
19 2981 Ken Johnson Teri Keeler /
George Keeler
20 20 19 13 16 88
20 5681 Chistopher Tesdale Bryce Davis 17 19 18 17 17 88
2011 Midwest District Championships



Pos Sail Skipper Crew 1 /
Crew 2
R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 Total
1 5622 Ryan Malmgren Amy Novak 2 2 5 5 1 15
2 5897 Ben Williams Deb Aronson 5 4 4 2 4 19
3 5015 Frank Gerry Marianne Gerry 6 5 6 1 2 20
4 5150 Larry Klick James Williams 7 6 2 6 6 27
5 2512 Randy Adolphs Kasi Rekoske 3 8 12 4 8 35
6 4788 Charles Howting Luthor Torgerson 4 7 10 8 9 38
7 5892 Bill Vogler Deb Torgerson 8 9 3 9 10 39
8 5551 Christopher Wright Jon Wright 9 3 7 18 OCS 5 42
9 5404 Jack McClurkin Dan Lopionski 12 13 15 7 7 54
10 3204 Stephen Grossman Eric Grossman 11 15 8 11 11 56
11 5631 Eric Bussell Rod Bussell 18 14 11 12 13 68
12 5927 Dave Sherwood Emory Luth 16 12 14 16 15 73
13 4278 Geoff Endris Patrick Endris 15 18 16 14 12 75
14 5638 Felicia Bamer Linda Tatum /
Adam Benson
13 17 13 15 18 76
15 2695 Walter Barniskis Michael Barniskis 19 16 20 10 14 79
16 2981 Ken Johnson Teri Keeler /
George Keeler
20 20 19 13 16 88

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Reflections on 2011 NAC’s

Many of you don;t know me, but I am sure you all know Frank. When I go to a regatta, I am all about the sailing, the time outside in the sun and the physical and mental challenge of sailing in different places and different conditions. I don’t hang around and socialize too long so it takes longer to get to know me. Both Frank and I continue to strive to improve our sailing and do our best, no matter what place that gives us.

Anyway, on to the NACs. Two days of driving, first night a stop at Berlin Yacht Club in Ohio to pick up our boat and spend the night, see a few friends who were in the middle of overnight Junior Sailing Camp; 50 + kids; we didn’t hang around too long; afraid we’d get put to work.

I hadn’t even looked at any of the NAC promotion material until I began reading it on our second day of travel. WOW, I was impressed by the clear and concise instructions and the attention to every detail on paper. I asked Frank who wrote the instruction packet and he said either Hank or Melanie. When I met them both, I complimented the author; Melanie by the way. I tend to be a very organized person (some say OCD) and recognize and appreciate that trait in others.

As we pulled into Cedar Point Yacht Club, were greeted, directed, boat unhitched,etc. I realized the organization on paper had been transferred to reality. I have never attended a National Championship (17 years in the Highlander class and 6 NACs in the Flying Scot) where measuring was done so efficiently and stress free. I remember at other times, baking in the sun, waiting in line, tempers around me growing short and I won’t even tell you about my temper!! Ephram was pretty awesome but the addition of a full service yacht club at Cedar Point made the NACs that much better. I quickly found the upstairs balcony with shade and a breeze and not many people and it became my yoga studio every morning before racing.

We pulled into the Cedar Point Yacht Club parking lot at 4:15 pm on Saturday and were measured and registered by 5 pm. WHAT SERVICE

For the first time ever, we had time to sail on Sunday at a leisurely pace, try out our new spinnaker,( Ryan finally got there with spinnaker in bag) and get acquainted with the big water of Long Island Sound.

Day One, Monday July 11. Got there early so Frank could have time to play with the boat, socialize, and generally take his time. Not a problem for me, I used the time to go for a walk, check out the real estate, and do a nice yoga practice up on the balcony. An hour or hour and a half of exercise is my normal morning routine.

The first glitch in the NAC organization happened just when Scots began lining up at the hoist, and all of the dock space was taken up by Junior sailors in Optis for an hour. No wind and a hot day so we delayed for an hour and I am glad those Optis did us the favor of getting in the way. We still bobbed around until 2 pm waiting for the sea breeze to come in. The best favor the Optis did was to delay our race starts until noon for the rest of the week. The heat took it’s toll on me that day and I was glad I hadn’t planned on attending the Jimmy Buffet themed dinner that evening. I did throw my Jimmy Buffet Parrot T-Shirt and earrings and a lei into my suitcase, but never wore them; stayed in my room at the DoubleTree. AIR CONDITIONING and some chicken fajitas were much better than a social event.

Day Two July 12

We still haven’t figured out the wind on this BIG LAKE. Is there a favored side? Do we play the compass? Does the tide really make a difference? At least there was better wind today and we did finish respectably enough to make the Championship division.

Used the afternoon to hang around the yacht club. I headed for the beach where I took a dip on Monday after the races; glorious cool clean water,(never seen a midwest lake this clean). I was planning to do some serious lap swimming, invited Ben and Deb, Ryan and Carrie, Sarah and Charles, but no one was up for it. Just as well. It was low tide and there was no water for me to swim in. I walked out to the dock and dangled my feet in the 4 inches that had been over my head on Monday.

Day Three July 13

Yay, the wind is blowing nicely and the forecast is to build. Our Lake Erie years got us used to some pretty wild conditions, and taught us to respect the water but not fear those high winds. Contrary to most women, I actually love “balls to the wall” sailing. I remember some windy crazy rides being mad at Frank for not putting the chute up. Although I am a Master’s swimmer and swim 2000 yards or more three times a week, I do put my lifejacket on if it is blowing enough that I could get hurt. Doesn’t matter how good a swimmer you are, if you are unconscious. So when you see me with a lifejacket on, it’s definitely time to put on yours.

Day Four and Five

I confess it is now August 2 and two weeks past the NAC’s and I never finished this. I was writing in the van on the drive home to kill the time and as soon as I got home, all the minutiae of daily life took over and I never wrote again.

To sum it up, though, I had a good time at the NACs and everything went smoothly. Also as one of the locals told me, they had a “Chamber of Commerce” week for weather. The following week they and us were wallowing in the 100 degree nasty stuff.

One never knows what Mother Nature has planned so we got lucky that week. I think the weather is the number one factor in the success of any regatta. At this NACs they had everything else perfectly under control and someone must have paid the right bills to get the weather to cooperate too.