Please select your home edition
Edition
Barton Marine 2019 728x90

RS Aero North American Midwinter Championship at Indian River Yacht Club

by Bob Patterson 4 Mar 2020 21:51 PST 8-9 February 2020
RS Aero North America Midwinter Championship © Sean & Tiffany Fidler

Trailers of boats from across the United States descended upon Kelly Park in Merritt Island Florida for our RS Aero Midwinter Champs. Thursday, Marc Jacobi put on one of his signature pre-regatta clinics in strong breeze. Your author was unable to attend the clinic, but by all accounts the participants learned a lot and handled the challenging conditions with aplomb.

An approaching cold front made the weather a point of anxiety for many competitors. Friday looked to be breezy and cold with overcast skies. Four races were completed with Marc Jacobi and Madhavan Thirumalai sailing RS Aero 9s revelling in the strong conditions. Bob Patterson and Hank Saurage were in the lead pack as well in RS Aero 7s, mixing it up with the 9 rigs and thinking they were looking good while on the water. There was a good bit of swimming on Friday, with Boris Mezhibovskiy showing impressive form. Staying upright was a key component to better results. When results were posted later and they realized that they had OCSs in their score card, they realized they had their work cut out for them Saturday.

Saturday was clear and sunny with a little less breeze but still quite sporty conditions. Jacobi and Madhavan continued their run in the RS Aero 9 fleet while Patterson and Saurage went to work. With the exception of race 1 on the day when Saurage went to the wrong mark and ended up at the back, the two sailors were 1, 2 on the day. Patterson was especially careful to be conservative at the starting line, hanging back and relying on his upwind speed to keep him within striking range. I will also mention that Erik Aker, sailing clean on day one (no OCS) and in the top three on Saturday was leading. Only when discard races would come into play would his lead be threatened.

A lovely dinner at the Hawksbill Restaurant was held Saturday night with some tired but happy sailors enjoying food and camaraderie. The restaurant was close to the sailing venue and was glad to accommodate us.

Sunday was forecast to be warm (correct) and light (nope). While not as consistently strong a breeze as Saturday, boats were depowering with sailors hiking full on to get that last chance to move up. Saurage put up a 1, 2, 1, 1 and Patterson was looking to move past Erik Aker with a 3, 1, 2 until he miscalculated a cross with Jacobi, did a penalty turn, capsized and had to battle his way back to 4th in the race. This cost Patterson second place overall but Erik Aker, having a 4 and a 5 as his drop races (versus 2 OCS for Patterson and a 12, OCS for Saurage) sailed a great series with very consistent results. Well done!

In the RS Aero 9 fleet Jacobi played his regular tune of straight bullets while Madhavan and Sean Fidler had quite a back and forth battle. Madhavan prevailed, but only by 3 points. The top 7s and 9s were often racing each other so it was interesting to see how things unfolded.

An interesting fleet in the regatta was the race among the RS Aero 5 rigs. While grouped with the 7s in the results, Paul Gingras, Gregory Popp, Melissa Solnick, and Tony Corkell all decided to sail with the smaller rigs, deciding that it was more fun to be out on the water than to be killing yourself with too much sail or staying on shore after trying to do so and getting hurt. We will definitely have a separate RS Aero 5 fleet next year.

The general consensus from this regatta was it was a positive experience. Indian River YC put on a great event, with little waiting on the water in between races and efficient changing of marks for the conditions. Launching was from a soft sand beach that we shared with windsurfers and kites and hose off right at the top of the ramp leading to it. There was ample parking for cars and trailers and Gregory Popp even had space to bring his RV as the unofficial shore base for the event. The racing area had little motorboat traffic and was a quick sail right off the beach. There were lots of smiles on shore afterwards and most agreed they will be back next year.

Next up in Florida is the fleet's first visit to the keys with an event at Key Lago March 7/8, before moving on the Sarasota OD Regatta on March 20-22. For full detail of RS Aero events in North America through 2020 check out the Events List.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoSkipperClubR1  R2 R3R4R5R6R7R8R9R10R11R12Pts
RS Aero 7
12757Hank SauragePontchartrain YC / LA16[OCS]1[12]111121116
21422Eric AkerMA211313[5][4]234222
32404Bob PattersonFL[OCS]2[OCS]52222312425
43173Dave ChadwickBrowns Creek SA/ AL433244[6][5]453335
52896Philip MyersonCedar Point YC/ CT[6]4443533546[DNS]41
62732Boris MezhibovskiySebago/ Brooklyn/ NY[DNF]7[9]65646665556
71378Paul GingrasSailfish Club/ FL3[9]2767[8]7787761
81626Jeff DunmallCAN[10]108[11]7878878677
91610Gregory PoppHalifax SA9[11]698[11]111091010991
102119Melissa SolnickSebago/ Brooklyn/ NY887810109[11][11]11111092 
111738Tony CorkellPalm Beach SC/ NC712[DNC][DNS]991091099892 
121983David SolnickFraglia Vela Riva/ ITA5551011[DNC][DNC]DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC101
RS Aero 9
12210Marc JacobiCedar Point YC/ CT[1]111[2]111111110
21982Madhavan ThirumalaiCedar Point YC/ CT32221332[4]2[4]424
33172Sean FidlerCrystal Lake YC/ MI234[DNC]3[7]23242227
42639Jim MyersWatch Hill YC/ RI44[OCS]3[6]244355337
51041Jim BuffumWeekapaug YC. RI663456666[7][7]654
61126Ash BeattyLake Canyon YC/ TX55[DNC][OCS]4555566DNS54
72279Mark SchwegmanPointYC/ South Africa[DNC][DNC]DNCDNCDNS4DNFDNSDNS33563

Related Articles

RS Aero Demo - Sunday at Northcote Birkenhead YC
Book your spot for a demonstration sail onboard an RS Aero this Sunday with NZ Sailcraft NZ Sailcraft are running an RS Aero Demonstration this Sunday at Northcote Birkenhead Yacht club from 10.30am - 1.30pm Posted on 13 Jan
RS Aero Boat Setup Tips
Top boat bimbles and tricks to get the best from your RS Aero Peter Barton from the RS Aero Class Association show us some top tips and boat bimbles to get the best out of your RS Aero. Posted on 17 Dec 2020
Video: Top 5 Rule 42 Mistakes
And how to avoid them in Single-Handed Dinghy Racing Find out what the Top 5 most common mistakes are when it comes to Rule 42 when sailing a single handed dinghy and find out how you can avoid getting a penalty because of it. Posted on 10 Dec 2020
RS Aero New South Wales State Championship
Held for the first time at Georges River Sailing Club The RS Aero NSW State Championships 2020 were held for the first time at Georges River Sailing Club over the weekend of 14/15th November, on the beautiful waters of Botany Bay. Posted on 20 Nov 2020
RS Aeros at the Turkey Bowl Regatta
First taste of winter at Corinthian Yacht Club of Seattle's annual event The annual Turkey Bowl Regatta of November 14-15 gave the first taste of winter. However conditions were great for racing and everyone was excited to be on the water in this well attended regatta with 73 competitors in total including 23 RS Aeros. Posted on 19 Nov 2020
RS Japan Open at Hayama, Tokyo
A total of 29 mixed RS Class boats take part A total of 29 mixed RS Class boats including visitors from Shimizu and an RS100 who sailed over from Enoshima! This year saw a good increase in the number of youths and females in both pairs and single-handers. Posted on 13 Nov 2020
RS Aero UK Youth Championship at Burghfield
Epic racing for 39 young sailors who took part The forecast was very windy and many events across the country were cancelled. With a suggested peak in the wind around midday we looked to get racing in early on Saturday and review at lunchtime. Posted on 2 Nov 2020
Dinghy Racing Channel: How to rig an RS Aero
Peter Barton from the RS Aero Class Association shows us some basic tips Peter Barton from the RS Aero Class Association shows us some basic tips for setting up your RS Aero before getting out on the water. Posted on 22 Oct 2020
Puget Sound Sailing Championship
21 RS Aeros take part at the Corinthian Yacht Club of Seattle event An enthusiastic group of 21 RS Aero sailors showed up for the annual Puget Sound Sailing Championships hosted by Corinthian Yacht Club in Seattle. Posted on 15 Oct 2020
RS Aero Italian Open National Circuit 3 in Rome
Twenty-one boats in winds between 6 and 30 knots Really difficult conditions that did not stop the sailors engaged in the Roman leg of the Italian Open RS Aero Circuit, held on Saturday and Sunday at the Tognazzi Marine Village, on the beach of Capocotta. Posted on 13 Oct 2020
North Sails 2019 - NSVictoryList - FooterCyclops 2020 - SmartlinkNano - FOOTERSelden 2020 - FOOTER