Holmes Hole season about to begin


A tune-up race across the Sound on Sunday, June 17, at 1 pm will open this year’s Holmes Hole Sailing Association season. The first official race will be, appropriately, on the evening of Thursday, June 21, at 6 pm. Racers are invited to gather at the snack bar of the Vineyard Haven Yacht Club after the race to hear the results. Races are held throughout the summer on Thursdays and Sundays. All are welcome. Please visit holmeshole.org for more details.

On July 8, the Sunday race to Tarpaulin Cove will involve a Pursuit Start for the first time. This variety of start operates on the Biblical principle of “and the first shall be last.” Each boat is assigned a handicap of seconds or minutes for the season, but rather than correcting the time at the finish to determine the winner, in a Pursuit Start the handicap is applied at the start: Each boat is assigned a start time, with the slowest boats, which have the shortest handicap, starting first and the fastest ones starting later. The object is to have everyone finish at about the same time, with the first over the line being the winner. (This should also contribute to a more congenial postrace anchorage, since in the past the sailors in the fastest boats have often anchored, had a restorative beverage, a swim, a sandwich, and reapplied sunscreen before the last boat has crossed the finish line).