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Second half at Keuka
July 28-29, 2018
Sunny skies and winds 10-15mph out of the West greeted sailors Saturday July 28 for the second half of the New York State Championships at Keuka Lake. For those familiar with Keuka, westerly winds mean one thing, shifty conditions. This regatta also served as a bit of a tune-up to work out the kinks and try and find some speed for the Eastern E-Scow Championships looming the following week at Keuka.
In the first race George Welch (KU-1) and Rick Turner (CH-6) broke away from the fleet. Turner found breeze going “downhill” the first time to open up space. The second time upwind, on the Windward Leeward two-lap course, Turner was playing it safe in the shifty conditions up the middle. William Hudson (KU-12) who rounded at the bottom 4th, hit the left corner and picked up a 45-degree consistent lefty and reached into the windward mark. He rounded 1st followed by Turner and Welch. The shift from the South continued with a tight reach to the finish with Hudson in the lead followed by Turner and Welch. Brent Penwarden (KU-2) was fourth.
In the second race, Bill Hudson picked the left again and led at the first windward mark followed closely by Welch and Turner. Downwind, there was a big shift to the Northwest. Turner caught fresh breeze and pressure and was able to round the gate first and led the rest of the way finishing first. George Welch was second followed by Chris Norman (HO-32) and Bob Cole (KU-9) in a photo finish.
The third race George Welch started clean at the pin and broke out to an early lead with a persistent shift to the left. He led around the first mark followed by Turner. The wind shifted going hard to the North causing, at first, a tight port reach with kites back to the gate. The shift continued requiring a douse of the kites and a tight reach to the gate. Turner was able to gain the lead during this maneuver and round the gate first. The course was changed with the big shift to the right. Turner continued in the lead to finish first followed by Welch and Hudson and Cole.
Sunday, very light winds out of the southeast, provided just enough wind for a start. The lead changed several times between Turner and Welch up the first windward leg. Turner rounded first and the breeze died. Welch was able to catch a zephyr and move into the lead which he never relinquished. Joe Mead (KU-25), coming off a broken bow sprit from the day before, and Bob Cole challenged Turner when he sailed into a hole in variable 0-5mph conditions. Turner caught the next zephyr and ultimately finished second, with Cole 3rd and Mead 4th.
That concluded the day’s racing as the winds remained light and variable.