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Jeff Robinson, skipper of Phra Luang, receives the Moffett prize from HHSA Commodore Jerry Goodale. Photos by Louisa Gould
Jeff Robinson and Phra Luang win the George Moffett Race Strong winds power large fleet in 30th sailing
The 30th George Moffett Race, sponsored by the Holmes Hole Sailing Association, was Saturday with the start and finish off the East Chop side of Vineyard Haven Harbor. Fifty-seven vessels registered for the race. The day was warm and sunny with a robust southwest wind of 15-25 knots and some higher gusts. The Race Committee - Honorary Chairman Hugh Schwarz, Chairman Harry Duane, Principal Race Officer Brock Callen, Commodore Jerry Goodale, Race Secretary Kathy Logue, Roger Becker, Irving Gates, Nat Benjamin, and Sally Culkin -had designed a great course which took the fleet from East Chop to buoy RW NW Mo(A) Bell in Nantucket Sound, then to Red Bell 16 near Falmouth Harbor, then to Red Bell 12 at Succonesset Shoal off South Cape Beach in Mashpee. After rounding the last mark to port, the fleet sailed back the way it came to the finish line near East Chop. Fifty boats started and 42 boats finished the 20-mile course.
Jim Lobdell's Malabar II, a past winner of the Moffett, finished sixth.
As the diverse fleet of boats, ranging in size from 20 to 60 feet, approached the line for the 11 am start, spectators on the East Chop shore were treated to quite a sight as the boats jockeyed for position, sailing in close quarters. The race committee had divided the fleet into two divisions, with the starting gun for the slower division II boats sounding at 11 am sharp and the faster division I boats allowed across the line at 11:15. The race committee boat - with Hugh Schwarz, Harry Duane, Brock Callen, Mike Wilson, Mary Worrell, Charley Felder, Marian Hammond and Polly Brown on board - was anchored at the starboard end of the starting line, which was roughly perpendicular with the East Chop shore and long enough to accommodate the large fleet. Most of the boats started on a broad reach on the port tack and made for buoy RW NW, allowing for the west setting current. After rounding the mark, the fleet hardened up and headed for Falmouth Harbor, continuing to be mindful of the west flow of the Sound. After jibing around red bell 16, the vessels sailed against the current to Succonesset on a broad reach on the starboard tack. After jibing around the bell, the fleet beat to windward back to Falmouth Harbor with the tide and against the powerful southwest wind. After rounding the bell, a beam reach on the starboard tack brought the fleet back to buoy RW NW, with the fleet screaming before the strongest wind of the day across some large and lumpy seas kicked up by the opposition of wind and current. After rounding RW NW, the sailors beat to the finish. At the award ceremony at Vineyard Haven Yacht Club, sailors were treated to chowder and other fine food, at a party organized by Sally Culkin. The assembled mariners were elated with the fine race and challenging conditions, with veteran sailors agreeing that no Moffett Race in memory had seen higher winds.
Juno, one of the leaders, blew out a jib. She withdrew after finishing the race.
Then came Jim Lobdell (6) in the schooner, Malabar II. Mike Loberg in Masquerade and Ged Delaney in Ardent tied for seventh, followed by Dan Culkin (9) in Magic Time, Ernie Mendenhall and Kathy Logue (10) in Rocinante III, Damian McLaughlin (11) in Arion, Irving Gates (12) in King Kiwi, Bruce Courcier (13) in Sea Queen, John and Lisa Stout (14) in Isabella, Tom and Laurie Welch (15) in Eastaway, John Amabile (16) in Solitude, Roger Becker (17) in Gloria, Bobbie Crosby (18) in Celeste, and Jim O'Connor (19) in Glimmer.
Information for this article was provided by John Amabile.
Matt Lucier carried for 75 yards and scored the first touchdown helped by Michael O'Donaghue's block. Photo by Ralph Stewart
Football teams collar Bulldogs
The MVRHS varsity scored a touchdown in the second quarter and made that hold up by shutting out Old Rochester in the season opener for both squads, 7-0.
Released from goal-tending duties, Nico Cuba scored the first and final goals versus Wareham.
Soccer teams kick off
The MVRHS boys soccer team, hit with 16 June graduations, held its own at Nauset in the season opener, Wednesday, 0-0. Shutout goalie Nico Cuba, one of the few holdovers from last year's South Shore League Champs, was matched by the Warriors' Brett Conrad.
Alexia Schroeder (left) battles Billerica.
Girls tie, lose