The conditions for the Bayview One Design regatta truly tested the Detroit Cal 25 sailors sailing capabilities and talent. The first two days provided light and variable winds with a couple shifts that guaranteed the scoring would be jumbled. The final day brought high winds that assured the boats with good boat handling skills topped the fleet. Once again the formidable crew of US632 Target Practice proved they were the best in the fleet. Target Practice owners Adam Hollerbach & Erik Ryan along with their crew of Brad Terpstra, Nathan Hollerbach, and Nick Marcolini bested the fleet for the third time in four years – very impressive to say the least. Newcomers Keith & Dana Ziegler’s Captain Obvious sailed an awesome series and finished closely behind Target Practice in 2nd place. Paul & Ross Nuechterlein’s Never Alone sailed a consistent series to finish 3rd. Marc & Eric Hollerback’s Pagan Baby finish 4th followed David Holme’s holmebrew and Lance Sometherman’s Details tied for 5th place.
The following recap is provided by Erik Ryan
Although winning this year’s BOD regatta was not something we thought we could pull off this year, we somehow managed to come back from a fairly deep opening scoreline (second to last in the first race,) and eek out an overall win against one of the most talented collections of Cal 25 sailors we can recall in recent memory. So as we’ve been asked to write up a quick re-cap of the 2017 BOD regatta, we’d like to highlight something we found a lot more interesting and exciting about our one-design class racing than all of the play-by-play details of each start and each race.
As most Detroit area Cal 25 sailors have been observing and discussing lately, while the overall number of boats has been decreasing slightly over the past few years (15-20 boats for big events, versus 20-25 in previous years,) the overall competitiveness of the class has continued to improve. While our team has only been active in the Detroit fleet since 2001 or so, it’s our recollection that to achieve a top 5 spot at any of the big events like a NOOD or Nationals regatta, you had to have a pretty consistent scoreline of top 5 finishes. However, one of our key observations about this year’s BOD regatta was that although there were only 16 boats in the regatta, the top 2 boats both had finishes between 10th and 16th place, and the top 5 boats all had at least one or two finishes between 5th and 10th place!
For a slightly different perspective on how evenly matched the bulk of our fleet is, over the course of our most recent 3 day BOD regatta, we sailed 9 races, in breeze from 4-5 knots, up to 12-15 knots, and had 8 different race winners! Additionally, the average finish for the top 6 boats was between 4th and 6th place. Long gone seem to be the days where the top 2-3 boats at a big event here in Detroit have an average scoreline of 2nd or 3rd place.
Simply put, while the overall quantity of Cal 25’s racing big one-design events here in Detroit may be down a bit, as we see it, that fact is being eclipsed by the overall quality of the one-design racing we’re experiencing lately. Which leads us to conclude, that although the boats may be as old or older than most of the competitors aboard them, the Cal 25 fleet in Detroit remains one of the most exciting and competitive one-design fleets in the region, so if you’re planning to participate in one of our next big one-design events, like the upcoming Nationals here in Detroit in August, be prepared for one hell of a competitive event!
Finally, in case you’re wondering whether or not we’re way off base in our assessment of how competitive the Detroit Cal 25 class has become, each year the BOD regatta directors award an overall trophy to the winners of what they determine to be the most competitive one-design fleet in the regatta, and this year that fleet was the Cal 25 class. So once again, if you’re on the fence about whether or not you want to take a Friday off work later this year and battle it out with some of the best small keelboat sailors in the region, look no further than the upcoming Cal 25 National Championship here in Detroit on August 11-13th, and we hope to see you there!