2012 Nantucket Invitational – Report by Chris Gould
Invitational Regatta Starts IOD Season
Flags and burgees hung limp all morning Friday from the yardarms at Nantucket Yacht Club, as
International One Design Invitational Regatta entrants waited ashore. Six visiting teams, from
as far as San Francisco and Chesapeake Bay, and six local teams couldn’t argue with the weather
forecast consensus – little or no wind for the three day event. Following hours of postponement
and with little to lose, principal race officer Eric Robbins called for crews to prepare boats. At
least it was an excuse to be on the water, beginning the season for many. Another hour’s wait
for wind followed the tow beyond the jetties to the starting area.
Race officials’ persistence paid off, as a light northwest breeze filled in. Near-solstice daylight
allowed three races to be conducted. Perhaps to everyone’s surprise and delight, Nantucket
Sound delivered fine sailing conditions again through the weekend, with all of the scheduled
eight races completed.
The team led by Fishers Island skipper Kevin Farrar won the event with a net score of 14 points.
Farrar and tactician Charlie Van Voorhis are both former IOD world champion skippers, along
with trimmer Tom Walsh and foredeck, local Carolyn Grant, who is waterfront director for Great
Harbor YC and herself multiple-time IOD world championship crew member.
Jack Hamilton of Hyannis, after giving Farrar a strong challenge on Saturday, ended deadlocked
on points for second place, winning the tie-breaker with Tom Price of Gibson Island, MD, who
finished third. The top local team, led by David Poor, finished fourth. Other local skippers
included Dan MacKeigan, Colin Sykes, Robert Constable, Sam Shipley and Peter McCausland.
The depth of competition was impressive, with ten of the twelve competitors nabbing a third
place or better finish.
Accepting top honors, Farrar praised Nantucket as the premier venue in the world for
IOD racing, citing the fleet of fifteen perfectly matched, modern IODs as an unparalleled
resource. Nantucket IOD fleet captain Ian McNeice was justly proud of the regatta execution,
acknowledging the contributions of many local volunteers who provided race management,
onshore support, and accommodations for visiting sailors. Nantucket Yacht Club staff,
membership and facilities afforded warm hospitality despite weather complications.
Thanks to Porter Dawson for the sailing photos and Ian McNeice and Judy for the shore photos.