by Barby MacGowan
Even with all the “ins and outs” of the course, Rosehearty never put her spinnaker up. “It was pretty windy (18-20 knots), and we had broken our spinnaker earlier in the week, so it was a risk vs. reward thing,” said Rosehearty’s tactician Paul Cayard. “We had good tactics and lay lines, sailed in all the right places and were able to hold everybody off without it.” Cayard saw Perseus^3 deploy its kite and have some problems, which may have contributed to the team’s fourth-place finish. “The angles just weren’t right for us to put it up; it was a little painful to go slow but the right thing to do when racing these boats.”
Near the end of the race, two boats from another class were ahead of Rosehearty, slowing it down, while Meteor was advancing quickly from behind. “We focused on staying in front of Meteor; otherwise, they were going to pass us and they’d be winning the regatta.”
In Les Voiles Blanche class, Koo also stakes her first-place position on a tied overall point score with yesterday’s leader Q, while in the Elegantes, P2 trails leader SPIPP by only four points for second, tied on point score with Sojana.
P2’s tactician Tony Rey said his team spent last night repairing a spinnaker that blew out yesterday, causing the team to start their three-race series with a fifth-place finish. “The pressure is higher when you are dealing with your own adversity,” he said with a chuckle this morning before racing, “but today will be windy and not so wiggly. This is a course that separates the men from the boys. It sounds innocuous and benign, but it’s plenty wiggly for these boats.”
In Mademoiselles, today’s winner Axia, also a defending champion, is now in third overall, tied in scoring with two others behind her, while Adela stands between her and overall leader Wisp from yesterday. According to Axia’s tactician Robbie Doyle, his team’s seventh yesterday hurt them, but mathematically, it’s still possible for them to win. “Wisp has to make a mistake, but mistakes are made, as we’ve proven,” he said.
The J Class had a glorious day of sailing, starting off with a thrilling 2.5 nm downwind leg. Yesterday’s leader Velsheda suffered a penalty after the start, clearing the way for Hanuman to lead the entire way around the 26-mile course.
All to say, there are no runaway winners going into tomorrow’s final day of racing when a race around the island, this time clockwise, will conclude the on-water competition.
The ‘Bucket Trophy’ will be presented to the overall winner of the 2017 St Barths Bucket. Yachts eligible for the prestigious award will be the class winners with five or more yachts in class.The class winner who prevails in the ‘most competitive, closely contested class’ will be the overall winner.
The class with smallest series point differential between first and fourth place finishers will receive 1 point with each class in succession receiving 2, 3, 4 or 5 points. Additionally, the class with the least overall time differential (total time/total distance for all races) between the first and fourth place finishers will receive one point, with each class in succession receiving one additional point as above.
The above mentioned points will be added together for the overall competitive class score. The class with the lowest number of points will be considered the ‘most competitive, closely contested class’.
The winner of this class will be the overall winner of the 2017 edition of the St Barths Bucket.
Should there be a tie, the class winner with the most yachts in class wins. In the event the tie remains unbroken, starting prowess will determine the overall winner (total time for all starts, from scheduled start to crossing the line – with the smallest total time prevailing).
Special Needs Children Project
St Barth schools have 40 special needs students with various motor and cognitive challenges. Outside the school system there are other island children with even more severe disabilities. The existing program facilities and services are not adequate to help these children and their families thrive.
This project supports the island’s first dedicated, handicap-accessible space suitable for assessment, treatment and coordinated support services, and provides the additional special educator and psychological services these children need to achieve greater autonomy, better school integration and a better quality of life.
The 2015 St Barth Bucket was proud to contribute to this initiative of the local St Barth Lions and Rotary Clubs.
Watch replay of all St. Barths Bucket Regatta races on TracTrac
|This morning, dockside at The Bucket, it sounded rather funny for sailors to be talking about a “Not So Wiggley Course” with such reverence, but when the day was done and a second of three races had entered the 2014 regatta history books, it was quite clear why. Mademoiselle, Elegante and Gazelle classes took on the long version (27.1 nm) of the course, which started on the west side of St. Barths and wound its way around smaller islands and rocks to the north, while the Grande Dames sailed the shorter version (22 nm) in winds that were a few knots less than yesterday’s yet just as feisty. The “not so” in the course description was obviously tongue-in-cheek, as the 38 superyachts -ranging in size from 27.5m/88′ to 66.7m/216′-zigged and zagged more than the usual number of times while crews executed numerous sail changes as well as spinnaker hoists and takedowns, alternately winding their charges up to gain advantage, then dialing them down to safely share close quarters at rounding marks with their magnificently sized competitors.
Leading in the Elegantes class after finishing third today and combining that with a first from yesterday is the 54 m/180′ Vitters Ketch Marie, whose tactician Tony Rey, in describing his day, was beaming like a little kid who had just gotten away with something bigger than he expected.
“Anybody who says superyacht racing is champagne and cocktails and taking it easy hasn’t been to The Bucket,” he said. “It’s an absolutely spectacular exercise in teamwork to get these things around the track.”
Rey said he was pleased with Marie’s start and the first third of the leg but then encountered the classic situation of gaining so much that suddenly the team was in the mix with way more boats than he was comfortable with. “It was just mildly terrifying, which is a typical feeling in the afterguards at Bucket Regattas,” said Rey, who counts this as his fifth Bucket Regatta aboard Marie. “This means we’re having a good day.”
Marie’s crew had a few missteps with its maneuvers (including “breaking a spinnaker and putting it in the water”), but others in the class did, as well, and six boats were abreast coming around Roche Table.
“It was absolutely spectacular; there were 40 meters on each side,” Rey said, alluding to the International Superyacht Rule that requires boats to leave 40 meters in all directions between themselves and their competitors. “I didn’t need sun screen because there was shade from all the sails.”
Seahawk, in Grande Dames class, hit the rocks off Roche Table but was able to clear itself and sail to fifth, nevertheless, claiming the top spot on the leaderboard for a second day.
When Clan VIII briefly lost its steering at the same spot, it infringed on the rights of Zenji, causing Zenji to miss a turning mark, but, as is the case in most such Bucket instances, the Clan crew gracefully accepted its penalty and no doubt plans to supply some drinks to the Zenji crew at the Bucket Bash later this evening.
“This was the kind of day that taxes bow and mast teams first because of the physical hoists and drops,” said Jonathan Kline, the safety officer aboard Clan VIII, “then safety officers and tacticians second because of the close quarters of the ‘wiggly’ course, with the fleets converging and crossing.”
Cape Arrow won the Gazelle class today with less than six minutes separating her from second-place finisher Nilaya, but the two are inverted on the overall scoreboard for Nilaya’s advantage going into tomorrow’s final race.
Moonbird has the most consistent finishes (2-2) in Mademoiselle class to lead overall, with Bequia having fallen to second from first yesterday.
|New to the 2014 Bucket – The Golden Pineapple Award, Sponsored by Hotel St Barth Isle de France. The Bucket Directors have added this award to the 2014 edition of the St Barths Bucket to reward an essential element of the event, who will WIN THE PARTY?For more information, and the full list of entries, visitbucketregattas.com/stbarths/Racing concludes on Sunday March 30.Live race tracking by TracTrac enhances the Bucket experience for friends, families and fans of the Bucket. Access that link atbucketregattas.com/stbarths/dailyupdate|