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Fast Bayview Mackinac Race

by J/Boats 31 Jul 2021 09:36 PDT
Bayview Mackinac Race 2021 © Bayview Yacht Club

Bayview Yacht Club, one of the nation's most storied and historic sailing clubs, is pleased to present the 97th consecutive running of the Bayview Mackinac Race.

The 2021 race started Saturday, July 24, with the first of 188 boats crossing the starting line at 11:30 a.m. on Lake Huron, just north of the Blue Water Bridge. The entire fleet sailed what is called the Shore Course, a 237.0nm blast straight to Mackinac Island to finish off the iconic Old Round Island Point Light, the red and white lighthouse.

J/121 sailing Bayview Mackinac RaceIn the thirteen-boat ORC B Division, Bob Christoph's J/121 Loki managed to finish the race track in just under 27 hours, a fast race to say the least in mostly reaching, waterline drag race (no planing) conditions. As such, the race turned into a big boat dominated affair. Up against two very well-sailed Santa Cruz 52s, LOKI still managed to pull off a third in class!

Racing in the fourteen-boat ORC C Division was Keith Stauber's J/35 PAPA Gaucho II, managing to complete the track in just over 32 hours to take fifth in class.

Tim McGuire's J/112E Elevation led a sweep of the podium by J/Teams in the twelve-boat ORC D class. The silver went to Brad D'Arcangelo's J/109 Consig, and the bronze medal went to Greg Thomas' J/130 Pendragon.

The eight-boat J/111 class saw another highly competitive battle all the way north to Mackinac Island. The top five boats all finished within a half-hour of each other. Winning was Brad Kimmel's Diablo in 29 hr 22 min elapsed. Second was Jeff Schaeffer's Shmokin Joe in 29:44 and earning their second podium finish for the two Mac Races, taking the bronze, was Scott Sellers' No Surprise just three minutes behind. Rounding out the top five was Carl Hanssen's Variance in fourth and Tim Clayson's Unplugged in fifth place.

Also enjoying tightly fought racing the whole race was the fleet of eleven J/120s. Winning with an elapsed time of 28 hrs 51 min was Charlie Hess' Funtech Racing, followed by Henry Mistele's Night Moves just seven minutes astern, and Mike Kirkman's Hot Ticket another eight minutes further back. The balance of the top five included Mike Fozo's Proof and John Harvey's Sleeping Tiger, in fourth and fifth, respectively.

In a similar fashion to their J/111 and J/120 stablemates, the ten J/35s pushed one another hard. As per the betting odds, it was multiple Mac Race winner, Bill Wildner's infamous MR Bill's Wild Ride, that finished in 30 hrs 38 min for the ORC H Class win. Second was the Bayer family's Falcon just five minutes behind, and third was Dennis Meagher's Snipe another 13 minutes in arrears.

Larry commented on his team, "Antionette's second Mac race on bow, Kevin's first with us. The rest of us have been sailing together for over 20 years. Jim and I for 37 years! I bought Bad Dog in 1996 and she is J/35 #105 built in 1985. The boat has way more Mac races on her than I do, as it has been to the island every year since she was splashed at least once and sometimes twice for both the Port Huron and Chicago Macs. It was my 22nd Mac race! We followed this up on Wednesday with a line honor, section win, and overall win Mackinac Island YC's Around the Island race which is way more fun than the Mac race as it is over in just over two hours!"

Dean Fitzpatrick sent us this photo of the top three J/35s. Dean commented on the race, "it was an unusual downwind start, and the spinnakers were flying for eighty miles! All nine J/35s were tighter than sardines. It may have been the closest race to Mackinac of all time, 97 years! Bill Wildner's MR Bill's Wild Ride nosed out Ed Bayer's Falcon and won by less than a third of a mile. Dennis Meagher's Snipe was in the hunt the entire 205 miles and got third place."

Sailing the eleven-boat ORC M Division were a trio of J/29s. Top banana honors went to Mike Gualdoni's Centurion, taking the silver medal.

Finally, absolutely dominating the five-boat ORC P Doublehanded Division was Brad Faber's J/111 Utah, a repeat winner, finishing in 30 hrs 18 min; safely winning on ORC handicap time by 1.5 hours!

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