by Talbot Wilson
Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club (RHADC) BERMUDA, June 17, 2019: At 1630 ADT Monday afternoon Kiwi Spirit, the Line Honors leader of the Marion Bermuda fleet, was 68 nautical miles from the finish line off St. David’s Lighthouse, Bermuda.
According to ‘Predict Wind’ and YB tracking, Kiwi Spirit was sailing at 7+ kts in a 4.5 kt west-southwest breeze. They are expected to finish in about 10 hours if they average 6.5 kts for estimated arrival off St David’s Lighthouse about 0200 Tuesday. They could be in as early as 0130 ADT.
Times on the Leaderboard are given in EDT… Marion time not Bermuda.
Eugene Berardi’s MachBuster, a Little Harbor 70, is neck and neck Abigail for second place line honors some 20 nautical miles behind the leader.
Abigail, Robert Buck’s Aquidneck 52 from Marion MA, was a little further west than Kiwi Spiritand MachBuster.She has a broader angle to the finish. Abigail is still holding on as the predicted leader of Class A... at this time, according to the predicted data on the YB Tracking.
Ron Wisner’s Hotspur II was 259 miles from a Dark ‘n Stormy.
by Talbot Wilson
Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club (RHADC) BERMUDA, June 18, 2019: Kiwi Spirit was the line honors leader from start to finish in the 2019 Marion Bermuda Race. The Farr 63 finished off St. David’s Lighthouse at 2:27:59 Tuesday. Francis Seldorff’s Kinship, a Baltic 52, was second across the line at 5:01:02.
Friends and families and volunteers have all commented on how straightforward this race has been, especially with so many boats finishing in such a condensed space of time. The Finish Line Report, accessed on the marionbrtmuda.com home page, lists boats that have finished and their elapsed times. Remember that an Anti-Bias adjustment to the ORR handicaps will be made and the adjustment will affect the corrected times.
The ORR handicapping system assumes that the wind will blow at a certain strength from varying angles for the duration of the race. Individual yacht’s polars then define how fast she should sail the course and the fleet is ranked against a fictional ‘scratch boat’. This assumption is ‘challenged’ by a variety of race specific climatic and oceanographic conditions. Ocean races of long duration will typically experience these varied conditions. Whether it is wind deflection and strength between inshore and offshore positions, the crossing of a known directional current or the historical location of a high pressure gradient, the likelihood of predictable conditions for an entire race is little to none. Because of these differences, the Marion Bermuda Race is attempting to take one of these conditions that has shown itself to be a real and consistent detriment to what one might feel is a fair race based solely on a boats handicap and include another factor that adjusts across the fleet. In the case of the Marion Bermuda Race (or any race to Bermuda) it is the Bermuda high pressure gradient.
Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club (RHADC) BERMUDA, June 23, 2019: The 2019 Marion Bermuda Race is in the books. 39 Founders Division entries and two Classic Division boats lined up for their starts in Buzzards Bay on Friday June 14. One of the classics failed to start, but sailed with the fleet heading south in Buzzards Bay for the finish in Bermuda and the hospitality of the Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club.
The race started with a gusty beat out of Buzzard’s Bay. Some boats like Riley family’s scratch boat Kiwi Spirit suffered gear failures in the 30-knot gusts. The tack of their mainsail blew out and they had to sail the rest of the race with shortened sail. Kiwi Spirit was first to finish but was off the podium on handicap in class and finished 37, second to last, in fleet.
On the course, one yacht— Mahinia Kai, an Oyster 54 skippered by Arthur Haubner and Arthur Auclair of Salem NH— withdrew with a steering malfunction. They headed back to Newport RI.
Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club (RHADC) BERMUDA, June 22, 2019: James Geil, Master of Tabor Boy, Tabor Academy’s 92-foot iron schooner, was ecstatic about the outcome of the boat’s first Marion Bermuda Race. Will Tabor Boy come back for Marion Bermuda 2021?
“Absolutely!” Captain Geil said. “We will block of this window of time for that… Absolutely, Absolutely.” The next race is scheduled to start June 18, 2021.
Tabor Boy and the Bermuda tall ship Spirit of Bermuda were both entered in the Classic Division of the 2019 race, the third Marion race for Spirit and first of any of the Bermuda races for Tabor Boy. In the past, Spirit had raced alone and this was expected to be a classic match. However, Spirit failed to cross the starting line in Marion, so the black and red Bermuda sloop was an automatic Did Not Start… DNS.
Tabor Boy won the match and is flying the Classic Division’s ‘Coming Home’ Banner back home to Marion, signifying her victory.