2007 MC Youth Championship Results
Spring Lake YC, MI
July 25 - 26, 2007
(Results and Report submitted by Rob Kimball on Jul 28, 2007)
Twelve teams rigged up for the 2007 MCSA Youth Championship Wednesday morning. Teams traveled to the Spring Lake Y.C. in beautiful Spring Lake, MI from as far away as Lake Davenport, IA for what quickly became a very competitive event. Sailors were quite diverse in ages and experience in the boats; however, as the scores demonstrate, the racing was incredibly tight.
Veteran MC sailors, Andy Molesta and Chris Eggert, served as co-PROs for the event. Assisting the PROs were Midge Verplank, Charlie Lind, and Pete Sjoberg. The combined experience of the race committee was ably demonstrated as the races were very efficient and started as scheduled.
Wednesday's W2s and 2½s were sailed in 6-13 knot SSW breezes. The fleet quickly realized the importance of staying in the pressure as Connor Davis, a talented Butterfly sailor from SLYC, and Eric Rivard, Glen Lake Y.C.'s current MC season leader, gave the fleet a lesson in sailing low and fast on the first downhill run to mix up the leaders, Coye Harrett and Charlie Knape, in the first race. Staying in the pressure was complicated throughout the day by the occasional heavy rain squalls that made finding the breeze close to impossible; nonetheless, the fleet and spectators weathered the conditions in high spirits. The rain never killed the breeze, and after four races, the top of the fleet was a dog fight. Harrett and Rivard were tied for the lead with eleven points with Mike Knape nipping at their heels with 13.
After racing, the fleet dried out and gathered for dinner at the Western Michigan institution, Butch's Beach Burritos on the Grand Haven channel. Good burritos and good times were had by all.
Thursday brought more unsettled weather but no rain. Eggert and Molesta had the fleet out as scheduled for the 10:30am start in a 5-10 knot S breeze. Staying in the pressure continued to be paramount, and it was clear the fleet had learned a lot on Wednesday as the entire fleet was jammed up early at the starboard end of the line prepared for the frequent righties. Unfortunately, this brought about a general recall for race 5. The fleet had a clean start the second time, and Eric Rivard grabbed the race win after overtaking Sandi Fredericks and keeping a hard charging Alex Fetter off his transom. Harrett managed a third thus sending Harrett and Rivard into the final race with just one point of separation which for Harrett in this fleet, did not offer any margin of comfort.
The final race of the regatta saw the fleet pushing the line hard. Harrett was a bit too bow-out on the fleet at the gun and was forced to start again. With Rivard jumping out to an early lead, Harrett had his work cut out for him. Picking his way through the fleet by disregarding his angles and getting his boat to the breeze first, Harrett put his boat in a successful lee bow position with Rivard on the final approach to the final windward mark of the regatta. Fetter remained close and in the last hundred yards, snuck between the 2007 MCSA Youth Champ, Harrett, and the regatta runner-up, Rivard. This made for Fetter's second runner up finish of the day.
After the races, all the teams and spectators gathered for another great lunch prepared by Karen Fredricks. Each skipper and crew received a trophy designed by Allison Price and Harrett was the recipient of the Carl Reuterdahl Youth Champion trophy.
All expressed a lot of excitement for MC youth sailing and are already looking forward to next year's Youth Championship. Please encourage your club's youth sailors to attend this great event.