Per Petersonís Andrews 68, Alchemy, won the second annual Campbell Cup Sunday against four other West Coast 70 Class Association sleds. The regatta, named for legendary sailor Mike Campbell, was hosted by Long Beach Yacht Club with take-home trophies supplied by North Sails.
David Vossís Piranha dominated his competitive 10-boat Farr 40 class in a weekend challenged by changing wind conditions between Southern California storm systems.
Saturday dawned with a steady drizzle over the area stopping shortly before the warning for the first race. The light breeze of 6-8 knots filled later in the day to 9-10 knots with the clouds parting briefly to let the sun shine down. Sunday showed about the same wind conditions but was sunny most of the day before the horizon darkened near the end of the dayís racing. The rain held off until after the trophy presentations.
Chuck Skewes, Alchemyís main trimmer and self-described 'speed guy,' accepted the perpetual Campbell Cup trophy for Peterson, giving credit to their driver Will Stout and navigator Artie Means.
'The wind turned out to be better than was predicted for this weekend,' Skewes said. 'We donít do a lot of buoy races so we came out Wednesday to practiceÖ in the pouring rain [laughing]. We learned a lot and it helped.
'We had good starts Saturday against OEX and GI [Grand Illusion] but only did okay while going through a few lead changes. Sunday we continued our good starts, getting a really big lead on GI in the first race. Going into the last race, we concentrated on keeping track of OEX and where we were in relation to them at all times.'
Voss, president of the US West Coast Farr 40 class, finished the regatta four points ahead of second place but pointed out the class is closely matched.
'You never know where you are going to finish in this Farr 40 fleet,' Voss said. 'The fleet is very tight and my crew did a great job. The crew is always the key to winning and they did it for us this weekend.'
Voss announced that the Farr 40 class intends to sail the Campbell Cup next year as part of their championship series.
'We had a class meeting last night,' Voss said, 'and decided we are expanding our series. Next yearís Campbell Cup will be the eighth race in our West Coast Season Championship Series.'
In the West Coast 70 class, the boats were scored under Ocean Racing Rules (ORR) ratings which factor in not only the specific measurements of each boat but also the average wind conditions for the racing venue.
After Saturdayís racing one of the teams filed a request for redress feeling that the race committee used the wrong wind rating for the conditions. The protest committee judges heard the request but ruled to deny the request for redress.
LBYC Commodore John Busch clarified the issue.
'The ORR scoring system is based on a difference between various wind speeds,' Busch said, 'and this weekend we had breezes that fluctuated both days. The race committee did the best job they could to access the wind and apply the correct wind factor for each race condition.'
Peter Tong and his Santa Cruz 70, OEX, took second place in the 70s class, although his boat is not really configured for buoy racing. Tactician Randy Smith commented on the weekend.
'We basically sailed our boat on what wind we had at each start,' Smith said. 'I had a full-time guide, Jim Bateman, who used a spreadsheet to figure out where we had to be and who we had to beat. Heís a CFO [Chief Financial Officer] so we figured he was the perfect person for the job. At any moment in the race, based on wind speed, we sailed our boat, jibing and adjusting to gain seconds of boat speed.
'Yesterday we had a phenomenal day, nailed every shift, every laylineÖ we were high on life! Today Alchemy sailed very well and didnít make any mistakes. They deserved to win. Peter loves LBYC and is very supportive of the 70s fleet. He really looks forward to these races.'
Ray Godwinís Temptress, a local favorite, finished second in the Farr 40 class and has been making great improvements in their performance over the last year and enjoys sailing in this fall regatta.
'This is probably the best finish weíve had this year,' Godwin said, ' and this is a fun regatta. We dodged the kelp and kept fighting for position. The first race today we lost control of our spinnaker and brushed against Far Niente. We decided do our [penalty] turn with the spinnaker up, but that didnít turn out too well. It cost us time at the finish.'
Godwin placed second in the last race but almost had a problem making the start.
'The battery on our radio went dead and we didnít know the race committee had changed the starting sequence [starting the Farr 40 class ahead of the West Coast 70 class]. We looked up and saw everyone charging for the line at about a minute before the start and got up to the line just in time.'
The regatta namesake, Mike Campbell, was a huge supporter of big boat racing. He owned and raced a series of sleds including his most recent, the Tim Kernan-designed 70-foot Peligroso. In October 2006 he sponsored a 70s regatta at LBYC, bringing together seven West Coast boats: Holua, Grand Illusion, Vicki, Skylark, Alchemy, Westerly and---of course---Peligroso.
The regatta was not run in 2007 or 2008 because of the conflict with the Long Beach to Cabo San Lucas International Yacht Race. Mike passed away in mid-October of 2008 and the regatta resumed in 2009 as an appropriate tribute of the fall regatta that Campbell started in 2006.
Alchemyís Skewes talked about owner Per Petersonís introduction to the West Coast 70 class.
'Per first raced with these boats two years ago in [LBYCís] Cabo race. It was 2008 and just two weeks after Mike had passed away. Just before the Cabo race, Per was invited onboard Victoria [the Campbell familyís beautiful motor yacht]. This was his first meeting with those in the 70s fleet.
'Per wants to thank the race committee, the volunteers and the Campbell family for holding this great event.'
West Coast 70 Class
1. Per Peterson, Alchemy, Andrews 68, Oceanside Yacht Club
2-3-1-2-2, 10 points
2. Peter Tong, OEX, Santa Cruz 70, Long Beach Yacht Club
3. Tom Corkett, Mirage, SC70, Newport Harbor Yacht Club
4. Edward McDowell, Grand Illusion, SC70, King Harbor YC
5. Chris Welsh, Ragtime, Spencer 65, Newport Harbor YC
Farr 40 Class
1. David Voss, Piranha, Cal YC, 3-1-4-1-3, 12
2. Ray Godwin, Temptress, Long Beach YC, 2-4-2-6-2, 16
3. Oscar Krinsky, Chayah, Alamitos Bay YC, 6-2-1-4-4, 17
4. Jeff Janov, Dark Star, Cal YC, 1-3-11(DSQ)-8-1, 24
5. Dirk Freeland, Skian Dhu, Santa Barbara YC, 5-8-3-2-6, 24