Saturday, February 14, 2009

February Mainsheet Column

Welcome to the 2009 season fellow Albergers! This year's racing column will be written in the plural because we have 2 racing commodores this year - J Bergquist and Andrew Cole. We hope to see you out on the race course this season, and we hope that some of you who haven't raced in a while will consider coming out and doing a race or two this season. Before we go any further, let's take the opportunity to thank Tim Williams, our Racing Commodore during the past 2 seasons, for a job extremely well done. We have seen a continuous growth in racing attendance and enthusiasm for racing under Tim's leadership and the new co-racing-commodores have some big shoes to fill.

Now on to what you all want to hear about, the announcement of the 2008 awards. As will probably come as no surprise to most of you, Tim Williams and his crew on Lingin #244 made off with most of the hardware in the process of putting a good old fashioned thumpin on the rest of us by winning every regatta they entered. Together with Lanny Helms they took the trophy at the Canadian friendship team race, but the rest of the season was a veritable LinGin tour de force. A good deal of fun was had at Tim's expense during the annual dinner with many references to his 'project list' for the boat, but the rest of us should all be in awe at how consistently they always manage to find a way to win. And win they did!

Other awards of note include TC Williams who won the Gerhard trophy for 2nd place overall in the High Point scoring and Jonathan Adams who won the 'most improved skipper' award for his continuously improved performance through the course of the season. There were many new faces out on the race course this year, and that was a great thing to see. There were a number of people who *almost* qualified for high point but didn't quite make it. It would be really great to see a couple more high point qualifiers this season and I think that there's a good chance we will get there.

Complete High Point Standings:

1. Tim Williams
2. TC Williams
3. Lanny Helms
4. Jonathan Adams
5. Harry Gamber
6. J Bergquist
7. Andrew Cole

Hmmm...the two last place boats seem to have gotten the commodoreship. I wonder how that happened?

This season we have increased the racing schedule just a little bit with an emphasis on trying to do at least one additional event on the Magothy. Given the success of last fall's Canadian weekend (the biggest Canadian turnout we have had in many years thanks to Larry, Mike M, and Phil!), we have decided to do a spring regatta at PSA which is going to be on May 9-10. This regatta is going to be run by MRSA the first day and PSA/A30 association the 2nd day. We are going to try and co-ordinate it with a cruise so that there will be a good post-race activity dimension, and it is going to count for 3 different high point races. This means that if you do this regatta and Canadian races, you will qualify for High Point. It would be really great to see us get some more of the Magothy boats to qualify for high point, so I hope that some of you up on the Magothy will come out and race with us at this regatta. It will be a lot of fun!

The rest of the schedule is pretty similar to last year. We will be doing the NOOD on April 24-26, Miles River on May 23, Ted Osius Regatta on June 7, Syronelle Races in Canada on June 13-14, Oxford on September 12-13, Queenstown on September 19-20, and Canadian Races at PSA on 10/17-18. We will also have PSA overnight (6/27) and Hospice cup (9/26) as 'provisional' non high-point races and if we have a good turnout we may do these as 'official' races next year.

One other thing to keep in mind is the upcoming seminars whose schedule is printed in this edition of the mainsheet. The seminars are a great opportunity to get out and meet other Association members, talk shop, socialize, and learn new things. We hope you will all come to the seminars and after-parties.

Before we sign off, we'd like to introduce ourselves to any of you who have not met me before. J has owned an Alberg since 2002 when he bought Calliope #287. His racing experience has been sporadic, to be generous, as he has been distracted by many things (projects, work, you name it), over the course of his boat ownership. But he has always enjoyed racing his boat, even in those seasons when he was not able to do it much (can anybody remember engine replacement?)... J is a first year medical student this year and also still works part time, so he is not sure how much time he is going to have this year for Alberg racing. But he's hoping to get out enough to at least qualify for high point. I hope y'all won't hold it too much against me on the occasions where I am unable to get out there and participate.

Andrew and Ann Cole joined the Alberg family in the summer of 2005. After meteoric initial PHRF success in the 2005 Good Old Boat Regatta, Andrew assumed his rightful place at the back of the Alberg one design fleet and has over the last few years steadily worked to improve his position in both Wednesday Night Racing and High Point. 2008 brought the first High Point qualification for Andante since Lou Maas retired from racing, and brought the Coles and several of their friends the first summer of Alberg recreation. In addition to assisting J with Racing Commodore responsibilities, in 2009 Andrew will work with the other CBYRA cruising one design fleets to share ideas on fleet building and participation bolstering activities. Andrew is looking forward to a second full season of High Point racing with the goal of improving upon, or at least equaling, his 2008 result.

If last season is any indication, this is going to be a great year with lots of excitement. We are looking forward to seeing you all out there on the water!