Please select your home edition
Edition
Rooster 2020 - Impact BA - LEADERBOARD

2021 Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta St. Petersburg at St. Petersburg Yacht Club - Day 1

by Laura Muma / Sailing World 3 Apr 00:22 PDT 2-4 April, 2021
2021 Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta St. Petersburg © Paul Todd / www.outsideimages.com

While a late-season cold front passed over Tampa Bay for an unexpectedly chilly start for the 120 teams competing on the first day of the Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta St. Petersburg, the sailors racing in the national regatta series happily bundled up to tackle the brisk breeze and soak up the sunshine. Many of the smaller boat classes delayed racing until the strong 20-knot breeze settled down in the afternoon, but the Melges 24, J/70s and J/24s, and PHRF fleets charged ahead to start on time and capitalize on what proved to be ideal racing conditions.

Eamonn Delisser and his team on the J/24 Main Squeeze started off strong with four first-place finishes. This is Delisser's first time competing at the Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta in the J/24 class (he's sailed many NOODs on a different boat), and he pragmatically summed up today's conditions as shifty. "The breeze would go left, but you could still get out of a right shift. It didn't matter where you went because it [the breeze] was going to come back," Delisser says. "While we don't normally have the boat speed, we certainly had it today so I can't argue."

Tomorrow, says Delisser, will be a different day, however. "Truth be told," he says, "as the day got lighter, our competition got faster....I was better in the heavy stuff; they were better in the lighter stuff."

For John Bauman and his team on the Lightning, Raging Bull, boatspeed and conservative tactics paid dividends. "I would rather sail conservatively than pull a high-risk move," Bauman says. "Given there are no throwouts for this event, I'm glad we played it the way we did because we ended the day with three second places. My crew [Fred Strammer and Monica Morgan], who are much better than me, wanted to be more aggressive, but I tried to hold them back a little bit.

"When it comes to sailing, I'm an idiot savant. Because I have such a great crew, it allows me to ignore everybody and just focus on the telltales and going fast. The more I can trust the crew and drive the boat, the better we are."

While many of the teams lamented about the light-wind spots that peppered the racecourses in between much larger puffs, one team quickly adapted to capitalize on the changeable conditions.

Paul Perry, who's calling tactics for Kevin Holmberg on board the Tampa-based Sonar Fawkes, says he noticed early on that every time there was a puff, there was a wind shift to the east. "We started scanning to see also where the holes [light spots] were that we could use strategically," Perry says. "Since we had more than enough power, we would find the lulls in the course and use them to get back across the fleet."

The strategy and execution is working, as the team leads PHRF 3 with three first-place finishes today. The duo have sailed together for two years and Perry says he and Kevin have established great communication between them. "Today we decided to sail our own race. Playing the fleet was secondary," Perry says. "The majority of our success was keeping our heads out of the boat, sailing fast and not missing shifts. And it seemed to work out OK for us."

For Gary Schwarting and his Obsession team, currently leading the Melges 24 fleet, today was about much more than racing sailboats, as he and fellow sailors paid tribute to their friend and fellow Melges 24 sailor, George Haynie, who passed away earlier this week.

"Many of the Davis Island [Florida] sailors gathered together on the water and organized a toast to George," Schwarting says. "George was one of my best friends and he's done more for the sport of sailing in this area than anyone I know. We sailed against each other and with each other for over 20 years in Melges 24s; he is already so missed."

Racing resumes for the fleets at 10 a.m. tomorrow, with the addition of the North Sails Doublehanded Distance Race and the Cruising World Rally fleets.

For more information on the NOOD events, visit www.sailingworld.com/tags/helly-hansen-nood-regattas.

Full Results available here.

Related Articles

Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta at Marblehead Race Week
Widnall's Javelin wins IODs and Coveted Cressy Trophy There were mere points between the top boats in several classes and one tie that needed to be broken on the morning of the final day of the Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta at Marblehead Race Week. Posted on 26 Jul
Marblehead NOOD returns
Eastern Yacht Club will host more than 100 teams across 12 fleets After a year hiatus, the 2021 Helly Hansen National Offshore One Design (NOOD) Regatta at Marblehead Race Week returns to Marblehead, MA, July 22 to 25. Eastern Yacht Club will host more than 100 teams across 12 fleets. Posted on 20 Jul
2021 Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta Marblehead preview
Fifteen J/70s registered so far with may top northeastern teams participating The 2021 edition of the Helly Hansen Marblehead NOOD Regatta will be taking place the weekend of July 22nd to 25th, hosted by the famous trio of yacht clubs lining Marblehead Harbor- Eastern YC, Corinthian YC, and Boston YC. Posted on 11 Jul
2021 Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta Chicago overall
One final race at Chicago NOOD; Team Mojo wins big Team Mojo, the Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta Chicago's overall winning team, took its lumps early in the regatta but ultimately won the seven-boat Beneteau First 40.7 class and the overall title. Posted on 14 Jun
2021 Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta Chicago day 2
Racing ahead of the thunderstorm World-champion sailor Andy Horton, said that no one on their Great Lakes 52 team believed the forecasted afternoon thunderstorm would materialize but when it did, he agreed ending racing early for the day was the right call. Posted on 13 Jun
2021 Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta Chicago day 1
Chicago sailors celebrate return to racing Courageous owners Ray Douglas and Kris Maybach jumped the gun in the opening race of the Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta Chicago series, drawing an over-early penalty and forcing them to re-start behind the rest of their eight-boat J/109 fleet. Posted on 12 Jun
Stage is set for Chicago NOOD
150 sailboats arrive to compete in the Chicago stop of the nation's largest regatta series The colorful battle flags and race boats are filling the docks outside Chicago Yacht Club's Monroe Harbor station as more than 150 sailboats arrive to compete in the Chicago stop of the nation's largest and longest-running regatta series Posted on 11 Jun
Annapolis NOOD a celebration for J/crews!
J/22 Scooby crowned as overall winner! J.R. Maxwell and the crew of the Annapolis-based J/22 SCOOBY were happy with their results Saturday in the big breeze of the 2021 Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta Annapolis; consistency being the key in the highly tightly competitive 15-boat fleet. Posted on 9 May
Bonnier Corp names Sarah Renz as Event Director
To oversee the Helly Hansen National Offshore One Design (NOOD) Regatta Series Sarah Renz has been named Event Director for Sailing Events, Bonnier Corp., it was announced today by Jonathan Moore, Executive Vice President, Events. Posted on 7 May
2021 Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta Annapolis overall
Battles to the end J.R. Maxwell and the crew of the Annapolis-based J/22 Scooby were happy with their results after the windy opening day of the Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta Annapolis—consistency being the key in the highly tightly competitive 15-boat fleet. Posted on 3 May
J Composites 2020 - FOOTERVaikobi 2021 FlexForce - FOOTERHella Dual Colour Floodlights - 728 x 90px - 002 gif Bottom