Quantum Key West 2012 - The Farr 400 one design class first regatta was held, just ten months after launch, in Florida last week (15-20 January).
Five teams made it to the starting line, including Sled Shelhorse’s Meridian X, racing after a great result in the Storm Trysail Clubs Fort Lauderdale to Key West feeder race. Finishing fourth across the line and second on handicap time, the race was very demanding. The fleet sailed south against the Gulf stream and upwind in over 30 knots, proving the Farr 400 is not only strong enough but also very fast in a demanding race that saw only 20 finishers from a 39 boat fleet.
On the Farr 400 course, every helmsman and crew started out at the same level, benefitting from the class’ one design configuration that ensured fantastic performances, level racing and some exceptionally close race finishes.
Congratulations go out to British skipper Joe Woods and his team Red who had an exceptional regatta and took home the win. Even though they won with an 8 point lead, their margin was much slimmer than the numbers show with tight mark rounding’s all through the week and several race wins only decided on the last leg of the race.
Spaceman Spiff also had a great week. Despite a steep learning curve in a new boat, their first with a sprit and asymmetric spinnaker, the team developed their boat handling all week. Even without injured crew member Ryan Ruhlman, they put together some good races and finished the week off well with two third place finishes on the Friday.
Says Dee Smith, Class Development Manager: 'As a class we learned a huge amount about the boat. They all performed well and were very close and it was great to see how, by the end of the week, all the boats had improved. This has been a great first class experience that we can learn from to make improvements in time for the next class regatta in Charleston.'
Speaking of his overall success and of the boat, Joe Woods comments: 'We had an excellent week. The boat was so well balanced and fun to steer’’
Sled Shelhorse, also commented about the week: 'I had forgotten how much fun one design sailing is!'
Overall KWRW was a great success for the Farr 400 class, fulfilling the aims of bringing Grand Prix style sailing to a one design fleet of boats that the owners really enjoyed sailing fast.
The next class meet will be held at Charleston Race Week, April 19-21st 2012. Results:
1. UAE 400 Red, Joe Woods: 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 3 1 1 14.0
2. USA 403 Team Premier NorCal, H. Blackett & S. Shapiro: 3 2 3 2 3 1 3 1 2 2 22.0
3. USA 404 Meridian X, W.S. Shelhorse: 2 3 4 5 2 4 1 2 5 4 32.0
4. USA 407 BLADE, Mick Shlens: 4 5 2 3 5 3 4 4 4 5 39.0
5. USA 406 Spaceman Spiff, Rob Ruhlman: 5 4 5 4 4 5 5 5 3 3 43.0 Farr 400 One Design website