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Wild Rumpus, Waioll top finishers in Shaw Island Winter Classic | Along the Waterfront

Nobody could complain about the lack of wind for this year’s Shaw Island Winter Classic.

The annual sailing race around Shaw started Saturday morning, the 13th, off the Orcas Hotel in moderate to strong gusty winds with 15 boats closing the starting line at 1010. Wind picked up as we started down Harney Channel with gusts that put lee rails under water. I had 32 knots register on my anemometer any number of times.

Mariana made a tactical error at the start so had to do a 360 penalty turn which of course put her last down Harney and Upright channels. The reach down Upright Channel logging a steady 8 knots was more to Mariana’s liking as she caught up with Howard Lewis in Liberty.

After an hour of steady tacking, Mariana’s crew of Karen and Norris Palmer were quite happy to be running up San Juan Channel where we took advantage of several secret back eddies to catch up with the last of the B division fleet off Neck Point.

The one- and one-half-mile stretch in Wasp Passage between Cliff Island and Bell Island usually foretells the outcome of this race. It seems that the fast boats always have good winds and fair currents, while the slower boats get the opposite. And, so it was in this race.

The fastest boat was Time Bandit, a J-120, skippered by Bob Brunius that sailed the 12-mile course in 1 hour and 45 minutes. This may be a record for the race. However, his boat’s rating of 54 gave him a corrected time of 1:34:22 and fourth in A Division and fourth overall.

Doug Simmons racing Waioll was first in the B Division and eighth overall.

A Division
— First: Wild Rumpus, Stephani Schwenk, SC 27 1:29:42
— Second: Norn, Arne Hammer, SC 27, 1:32:05
— Third: Little Blue Dune Buggy, Alex Simanis, SC 27, 1:32:20

B Division
— First: Waioll, Doug Simmons, Columbia 28, 1:50:51
— Second: Fiona, Bruce Brackett, Chant 40, 1:55:15
— Third: Whiffler, Betsy Wareham, H-R 35, 1:59:33

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