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US Sailing announces 2010 one-design award winners

by Jake Fish on 18 Nov 2010
John “Zeke” Durica of Dunedin, Fla - US Sailing’s One-Design Sailing Symposium US Sailing
US Sailing - Last weekend at US Sailing’s One-Design Sailing Symposium, presented by Gowrie Group, five awards were presented to recognize outstanding individual and organizational achievements in one-design sailing. The award categories are: Service, Leadership, Club, Regatta, and Creativity. These awards highlight role models of creative leadership in one-design sailing.

US Sailing congratulates the 2010 One-Design award winners: Brant Beach Yacht Club, Ensign class pioneer John 'Zeke' Durica (pictured center with Dave Rosekrans and Gary Jobson), Sailgroove’s Chris Love and Pat Hitchins, co-event chairs of the 2010 ICSA Nationals Christine Porter and Carrie Bargren, and the Fishing Bay Yacht Club.

US Sailing’s Regatta Award
The Fishing Bay Yacht Club (FBYC) of Deltaville, Va. won the 2010 Regatta Award for the excellence in development, promotion, and management performed by organizers and sponsors of the 2010 USODA (United States Optimist Dinghy Association) Layline Nationals on July 17-25, 2010.

Co-chairs Noel Clinard and Jay Buhl, along with webmaster Jon Deutsch were recognized for demonstrating extraordinary individual creativity and contribution to the year’s most innovative one-design event of national significance. The regatta attracted broad national and international participation of 317 boats through persistent marketing and communication efforts. The small club located in a village maximized their resources through their entrepreneurial promotions, sponsorship development, community involvement, shore activities and creative dissemination of housing, tourism, historical and racing information.

The regatta site conjoined four nearby properties, including the Deltaville Dockyard, Jackson Creek Condominiums, Deltaville Maritime Museum, and Harbor House Community. The regatta consisted of three events: team racing, girls fleet racing, open fleet racing, plus a green fleet for novices. Despite its small size of about 330 family members, FBYC turned out different race committees for these events with over 50 volunteers.

The backbone for marketing the regatta was an effective, user friendly web site at The web site was enabled to provide social networking through Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. A detailed media plan included the engagement of two separate video services, and Sailgroove, who provided ample coverage. FBYC facilitated the recruitment of Layline, a marine supplier, as the first ever Platinum level partner for USODA.

Also, 2008 Olympic Gold Medalist and US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics member Anna Tunnicliffe was in attendance and gave the keynote address for the opening ceremony.

US Sailing’s Service Award - John H. Gardiner, Jr. Trophy
John 'Zeke' Durica of Dunedin, Fla. won the 2010 Service Award for the distinguished service and leadership he has provided in the promotion of the Ensign class.

Durica began sailing on Ensigns in 1967. In 1978 he purchased his first Ensign, and over the next 32 years he successfully competed in many national, regional and local events. In August of 2010, he won the Ensign National Championship Regatta, which was sailed in Lake Huron. However, Durica’s involvement in the Ensign class goes far beyond his racing participation. Zeke served on the Ensign Class Association (ECA) Board from 1989 to 1998 in the positions of Commodore, Rear Commodore for Publicity, Rear Commodore for Regional Affairs, and Treasurer. He founded Ensign Spars, Inc. as a source of parts, rigging, supplies, and advice for Ensign owners interested in outfitting and improving their boats. In addition, he is an active participant in the Yahoo! Ensign discussion group by lending his expert advice on reconditioning and solving maintenance issues.

He founded Fleet 69 in Dunedin, Fla. and taught many people how to sail and race Ensigns through seminars. Fleet 69 normally hosts the annual Ensign Class Midwinter Regatta. Durica created the 'Most Beautiful Ensign Award,' which encourages owners to keep their boats looking great. He initiated the 'Boat List,' which allows Ensign owners to submit a for-sale ad at no cost. Durica lead the ECA Hall of Fame into existence to recognize successful class sailors and milestones. He started the Sail Patch Royalty Program, which requires all sails to have an official 'Ensign Sail Patch' attached.

Zeke’s greatest service to our class was stepping forward to build new Ensigns after Pearson stopped production. Over the past ten years Ensign Spars, Inc. has built 30 new Ensigns to class standards. The class has been invigorated by the availability of new Ensigns, and the availability of major replacement parts, like entire decks, cockpit soles, fully rigged masts, etc. Zeke’s efforts have allowed vintage Ensigns to be restored.

US Sailing’s Leadership Award
Christine Porter and Carrie Bargren, co-chairs of the 2010 ICSA (Intercollegiate Sailing Association) National Championships in Madison, Wis. won the 2010 Leadership Award in recognition of the individual initiative, enthusiasm, organizing ability and leadership they displayed in running this regatta.

The University of Wisconsin-Madison Sailing Team hosted the nationals independently from the university with a total operating budget of $119,000. They obtained over 200 donors. The team mobilized sailors from the Midwest for donations, housing, boat loans, and race committee assistance to staff the all-volunteer, 10-day event.

In cooperation with Terry Kohler, Porter and Bargren arranged for 18 new boats (a joint purchase by Notre Dame and Wisconsin) for the participating teams. A total of 18 Midwest yacht clubs provided individual donations. Eleven yacht clubs or sailing schools loaned 17 inflatables to provide the umpires with the necessary equipment to run the event. There were 650 banquet meals provided, 440 gallons of gas used, 95 overnight stays for the race committee, and 300 lunches for volunteers. All of this was provided by a team that was studying and competing throughout the planning season.

US Sailing’s Creativity Award
Sailgroove’s Chris Love of Somerville, Mass. and Pat Hitchins of Austin, Texas won the 2010 Creativity Award for their outstanding individual creativity and contribution to the year’s most innovative one-design events of national or international significance.

Thanks to the efforts of Love, Hitchins, and a dedicated behind the scenes crew, Sailgroove has become reputable force in the area of sailing video coverage and event promotion. Sailgroove’s coverage displays energy and excitement for our sport, and continues to set the bar for the most current, interesting, and entertaining video from the most significant sailing events.

US Sailing’s Club Award
The Brant Beach Yacht Club of Brant Beach, N.J. won the 2010 Club Award for the administrative excellence, fleet growth, creative programming, regatta support, and member contribution they provided to a number of regional, national and international one-design events.

Over the years, the Brant Beach Yacht Club has been a consistent venue for large one-design classes. They have done remarkable work at hosting regional, national and international championships, including the 2010 Club 420 North American Championship (111 boats), 2009 & 2008 Laser/Laser Radial/4.7 National Championships (180 boats/per year), 2007 Sunfish World Championship (100 boats).

The hosting of these events has sparked growth in all of the member fleets in Sunfish (75 boats), Laser (30 boats), Club 420 (20 boats), and Optimist (100 boats) fleets for the club.
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