A Hail from the Rail

Tom HubbellFleet News, Leadline

Hoover Sailing Club Thistle Fleet 126
Bothersome Appropriate Distance (BAD) Regatta
Saturday May 8, 2021

Fifteen Thistles showed up to race the no-frills, BAD Regatta organized by Fleet Captain Mike McBride.  COVID-19 precautions were the order of the day.  The cold front passed by the night before and a barely-fifty degree clear day with a north to northwest breeze started the day.  Clark Wade and MC team ran six races creatively using a variety of horns, flags, and timing devices and well-placed marks.  The usually shifty NW breeze deteriorated to an on-and-off west to north breeze which drove everybody crazy.  That there were six different race winners is testimonial to the fickle, sometimes great, or not, dying cold front.  Or you could observe that the best worst-race was 7th, as proof of the scramble.

Post-race socializing was at a spinnaker pole distance and masks were seen.  Rachel Lavender’s pottery made excellent trophies. From Cleveland, the Sheddon team with two little kids and parents, Nicole and Jesse, were outstanding finishing in second place.  Skippers John Shockey, Steve Lavender, and Kit Holzaepfel finished second, third, and fourth.  Stu Fisher was on a roll to win until retiring from the last race.  The Hubbell-Yingling team won with five finishes in the top four places, and a seventh.

Thistles on the Big Lake

Thistle Lake Erie District Championship at Edgewater Yacht Club on Lake Erie June 5 and 6 delivered a mind-boggling array of wind shifts, puffs and holes, and a scramble of scores.  Thirty-four boats took on the challenge. The conditions were right for a thermal but that never really materialized.  The breeze varied from southwest to north and from 5- 15, but the spells of breeze-on were very short.  At the end of five races Ben France’s team posted one less point than the Stu Fisher team; Ben started sailing at Leatherlips in his youth where such conditions are routine.  It wasn’t his team’s first rodeo either.  Stu is obviously one of Hoover’s star players.  Matt Sessions’ boat was next.  Your correspondent’s team was hot on the first day but clueless on day two.   It was definitely a ‘what you see is what you get’ kind of regatta.  Forecasts and probabilities were useless.  Well done Ben, Jeff Eiber, and Sara Paisley!

Other Fleet 126 News by Ann Jones

Thistle Class Association Approves New Builder
For more information contact Beacon Composites owned by Alex Venegas, and located at Creedmore, North Carolina by phone at 704-813-8408, or email Alex@beaconcomposites.com

Please know that our former builder Great Midwest Yacht Company, owned by Doug Laber, here in Sunbury is available for our repair and parts needs. You can contact Doug by phone at 740-965-4511 or email dlaber.aol.com

Congrats to Steve Lavender! Steve came in third in the June pursuit race. Four Thistles participated, including Steve, Bob McNitt, Nadia Reynolds and Clyde Findley.

Thanks to our Great Race Committees! Everybody has shown up on time and done excellent work. We even ran the races for the Interlake Regatta on June 19, and the conditions were especially challenging. The wind ran the gamut from a whisper for the first race to white capping at the end of the day, which culminated with the righting of a turtled Interlake near the dock. Let’s keep up the fine work!

ON THE HORIZON – Here are some upcoming events:

  • July 3 & 5 HSC Independence Series race
  • July 5 (Monday) Independence Series Awards & Picnic
  • July 6 (Tuesday) Sears Cup Junior Regatta, HSC (see below)
  • July 17-18 (Sat &Sun) Thistle Great Lakes Championship, North Cape Y.C., Monroe, MI
  • July 31-August 6 (Sat-Fri) 75th Thistle Nationals, Cleveland Yachting Club, Rocky River, OH
  • August 28 (Saturday) HSC Past Commodores’ Roast

This should be a great spectator sport! Jamie Jones will run the Area E Sears Cup Finals. Jamie says he expects 5-8 junior teams from Ohio and Michigan. The top team qualifies for the Sears Cup Finals to be raced at Marblehead, Massachusetts in August in RS21’s. (An RS21 is a 21-foot keel boat that requires a crew of 4 people. Its stern is open (like a 505’s) and it has a hard chine (like an Interlake’s). Jamie also mentioned that he plans to use 3 boats from Hoover Sailing Club in our local competition. So come on out and watch the Juniors make Thistles go—FAST!

A WORD TO THE WISE – HEATSTROKE isn’t much fun! First you get dizzy, sweat a lot, and feel nauseated. Then you quit sweating, pant, and probably faint. At that point somebody needs to call 9-1-1. To prevent that situation, dunk your hat/life jacket/shirt in the lake and put them back on. You should drink lots of water or a sport beverage to stay hydrated, and stay in the shade of the sails whenever possible. If all else fails, just go in—it isn’t worth making yourself sick! My mom taught me that, ‘She who fights and runs away, lives to fight another day!’ 

LOOKING AT THE LAKE It’s full and we have had lots of interesting wind! It looks kind of green, but that’s okay–Commodore Charlie Vasulka says so. He told me green is good but BLUE green is terrible, so don’t worry! Just come on out and enjoy weekends and Wednesday evenings (beer and burgers included) on the water and the patio. WE MISSED YOU A LOT LAST YEAR, SO COME ON BACK!

More photos from the BAD Regatta can be found at https://www.lisaksphotos.com/Sailing/2021-5-8-Thistle-BAD-Regatta/