Spirit Walker wins 2013 ORR Great Lakes Championship Series

Published on March 6th, 2014

The Offshore Racing Rule (ORR) has announced the winners of the 4th annual Great Lakes Championship Series.

First place: Vern McCain/ Bob Hillier, Muskegon, MI, Spirit Walker (BSH 41)
Second place: Chris Saxton, Detroit, MI, Vortices, (J/145)
Third place: Bill Martin, Ann Arbor, MI, Stripes, (Great Lakes 70)

“Racing under the ORR rule is a very honest handicapping system and makes for great competition between boats of different designs,” said McCain.

According to ORR spokesperson Frank Kern, 2013 is the first year in which all current ORR certificate holders qualified. “In 2012, we had 48 entries versus 93 for 2013,” Kern stated. Kern expects an even larger fleet of competitors with the Chicago Race to Mackinac following the Bayview Mackinac Race in 2014. He predicts many of the competitors from the eastern Great Lakes will participate in both events.

Bill Martin, third place winner, was pleasantly surprised to be part of the winners list. “We are never able to sail the entire series; however, as a class, the ORR Rule has served us well,” Martin observed. “While there are small differences in our boats, ORR has more than adequately adjusted to provide fair racing.”

This was the fourth consecutive offering of the ORR Great Lakes Championship Series and entries continue to rise each season. To qualify for the series, racers needed a valid 2013 ORR certificate and must have raced in two of the following races, with one of the two being a Mackinac Race: Queen’s Cup, Bayview Mackinac Race, Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac, Verve Cup (point to point race) or Bayview Long Distance.

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