Stark Raving Mad and Simpatico win Onion Patch Divisions — Storm Trysail tops Teams

Onion Patch SeriesHamilton Bermuda, June 29, 2014— Ask anyone who has done it… The Onion Patch is one tough series to win. It is a challenge to yacht, skipper and crew to prevail in these three spectacular events and venues.

The Onion Patch series had two winners in 2014, Jim Madden’s Swan 601 Stark Raving Mad VII won the traditional IRC series and the Henry B. DuPont Memorial Trophy. William Riley in his Pearson 39 Simpatico won the new ORR scored Navigator’s Race Series and the new Richard Kempe Memorial Trophy. Mrs. Neil Kempe presented the new trophy in her husband’s memory. Dick Kempe, a past commodore of the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, was instrumental in introducing the Cruiser Division into the Newport Bermuda Race in 1990. 

Organizers had added a new, more relaxed Navigators Race Series format for the 25th running of the traditional series. The NYYC and RBYC each added a round the cans flexi-course for each day of racing. The new series for cruiser oriented race programs was scored under ORR ratings. 

In the IRC series, Madden’s Stark Raving Mad had a 6 in the NYYC Annual Regatta, a 3 in the Newport Bermuda Race among the Onion Patch Entries, weighted at 1.25 and a 2 in the RBYC Anniversary Regatta for 11.75 points. Second place went to the US Naval Academy TP52 Constellation skippered by Josh Forgacs scoring 11-1-1 for 13.25 points. Third place was Rives Potts’ McCurdy & Rhodes 48 Carina with 5-4-5 for 15 points. 

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Bermuda Race Prizegiving

PrizegivingSave the Date:  Newport Bermuda 2016
June 17th…  110th year & 50th Race

By Talbot Wilson

Hamilton, Bermuda, June 29, 2014 - Royal Bermuda Yacht Club – It's a quiet Sunday after the Saturday evening prizegiving, crew dinners and the last party at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club for Newport Bermuda 2014. Return crews are now packing groceries, topping off tanks and clearing Bermuda Customs for the long cruise home. Time now for some 1600 racers and their guests in Bermuda to return to the ‘real’ world.

Although the prizegiving had to be moved from it’s traditional spot on the Governor’s House lawn to the Pier 6 on the Hamilton waterfront, it was certainly a gala affair. Prizewinners enjoyed a happy half-hour with Gosling’s Dark ‘n Stormy cocktails before His Excellency the Governor of Bermuda Mr. George Fergusson presented 112 regular prizes.

The Governor also presented three special recognition awards on behalf of the Bermuda Race Organizing Committee...

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Actaea takes St. David's Lighthouse division.  Shockwave wins Gibbs Hill Lighthouse.

Bermuda RaceBy John Rousmaniere

Hamilton, Bermuda, June 28, 2014: Actaea, skippered by Michael and Connie Cone from Philadelphia, PA and Shockwave, a 72-foot Mini-Maxi sloop owned by George Sakellaris from Framingham, MA, are the big winners in this year's 49th Newport Bermuda Race.

The 635-mile race across the Gulf Stream had 164 starters on June 20 at Newport, RI, in five divisions, each for a type of boat. The race has no single winner (only division winners), although the winning St. David’s Lighthouse Division boat is generally regarded as the race’s top boat. The fleet was started in 15 classes, each with its own prizes. Ten boats retired from the race due to damage or to tight schedules brought about by slow going in erratic winds. The conditions made for challenging racing that favored both smaller boats and crews who accurately analyzed the complicated conditions and kept their boats sailing as fast as possible toward Bermuda. Boats were often tightly clumped, with reports of 30 or more boats nearby or within sight.

The St. David’s Lighthouse Division, for normal cruising-racing boats with amateur crews, was the largest division with 99 boats. The winner is Actaea, a modified Hinckley Bermuda 40 yawl sailing her tenth Newport Bermuda Race under the command of Michael Cone (Philadelphia, PA). After finishing dead last in his first Bermuda Race, in 1996, Cone began a multi-year upgrade of the boat. He summed up the metamorphosis with two concise points. “We had a great working crew and a fine tool.”

Actaea sailed in Class 1, for the smallest boats in the division, as did the second and third-place boat - Flyer (Douglas R. Abbott, St. Michael’s, MD) and Sinn Fein (Peter Rebovich, Sr., Metuchen, NJ). After five days of racing 635 miles, the margin between the three boats on corrected time was just 45 minutes. This is Sinn Fein’s seventh trophy-winning performance in as many Newport Bermuda Races since 2002, including victories in the St. David’s Lighthouse Division in 2006 and 2008. The fact that she was even sailing was a triumph. After being nearly destroyed in Hurricane Sandy in 2012, she was rebuilt by her crew.

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Constellation wins Anniversary Regatta IRC. Nanuq wins Navigator’s ORR Race

ConstellationHamilton, Bermuda, June 27, 2014 - Royal Bermuda Yacht Club - The US Naval Academy TP52 Constellation has won the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club Anniversary Regatta held Friday June 27 in Bermuda’s Great Sound and adjacent waters. Only the second race counted in the results and Constellation won that.His Excellency the Governor of Bermuda Mr. George Fergusson, who sailed aboard Constellation in both races, was at the helm of last leg of the final race. He drove the yacht from the Great Sound, through Two Rocks Passage and on to the finish off the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club in Hamilton Harbour.

Race 1 was a windward-leeward course that was eventually abandoned following a protest against the Race Committee that raised the point that boats had sailed the proper course. The Race Committee abandoned Race 1 under RRS32.1(e) “for any other reason directly affecting the safety or fairness of the competition.”

Apparently there was confusion over the course being sailed. The course posted on the signal boat was Course 1, a windward-leeward, three-lap course. Constellation rounded the leeward mark for the second time and then saw the Principal Race Officer sighting the line and the secretary in place to record finishers. They thought they needed to finish and returned, crossed the line and got a horn, signaling a finish. Boats them followed across the finish line and got the signal.

There were two misses… miscommunication and misunderstanding. The committee abandoned Race 1 as unfair competition.

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Actaea Tops 96 St. David’s Lighthouse Entries For Bermuda Race Win

Actea CrewActaea won the St. David’s Lighthouse Division in the 2014 Newport Bermuda Race. Michael and Connie Cone’s Hinckley Bermuda 40 yawl raced in Class 1. They started in Newport, RI on Friday June 20 at 1:00PM EDT and finished in Bermuda off St. David’s Lighthouse almost 122 hours later.

She corrected her time ahead of Llwyd Ecclestone’s 66 foot Kodiak, the division’s line honors winner, 80hr 25min 58sec to 83hr 57min 40 sec and corrected ahead of the other 96 boats in the division. Actaea won her division by some 40 minutes of corrected time over Douglas Abbott’s Class 1 Cal 40 Flyer. The Cones are from Philadelphia PA and sail on the Chesapeake Bay.

Michael Cone was depressed when he walked into the awards ceremony for the 1996 Newport Bermuda Race. “I swore that I’d never ever do this race again,” he remembered. His Bermuda 40 yawl Actaea was the last boat to finish that year, which meant that his wife, Connie, would be presented with the Galley Slave Trophy as the cook who had sailed the longest time and, therefore, prepared the most meals.

Salvation for the Cones came in the unlikely form of that year’s race winner, George Coumantaros. After he was presented with the St. David’s Lighthouse Trophy, he told the crowd that he had been racing to Bermuda since 1952—26 races, all with disappointing endings until now. “We’ve been like Jason chasing the Golden Fleece,” he said. “I’d like to give all who sail for the Lighthouse Trophy some advice: don’t despair, keep trying, and if you don’t win it by the time you are 75, withdraw.”

Cone recalled, “I was really upset, and he addressed that feeling in his wonderful speech. So I decided to come back.”

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Shockwave repeats Gibbs Hill win as Actaea snatches St. David’s Lighthouse Division

Shockwave, skippered by George Sakellaris of Framingham MA, crossed the finish line in the Newport Bermuda Race at 6:34 Bermuda time Monday to take line honors in the 49th Newport Bermuda Race. All of the boats in the Gibbs Hill Lighthouse Division have now finished. Based on provisional results, Shockwave can be confirmed as the class 9 and division winner, taking home his second Gibbs Hill Lighthouse Trophy in a row. This is the first boat to win consecutive Gibbs Hill Trophies since the prize was dedicated to the grand prix,l division in 2002.

Hap Fauth’s Bella Mente and Caol Ila owned by Alex Schaerer finished second and third in the class and division.

For the St. David’s Lighthouse Division corrected time honors, first we thought the Class 2 Navy 44 Swift was the one, then as Class 1 boats began to finish. Five of the top 6 in the Division are in that class. Initially, it was the Tartan 41 Aurora, then the Cal 40 Flyer, before the Hinckley B40 Actaea stole the show.

Actaea is a classic cruising yawl owned by Michael Cone of Philadelphia Pennsylvania, PA.. Her crew are John Vj Chiochetti, Constance H. Cone, co-owner and watch captain, James Dalton, George J. Fallon, Rex Miyashiro, Stewart Rose, and Stanley Sneath. Cone is a member of Corinthian YC.

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