Patience Rewarded at Verve Cup

Published on August 8th, 2015

Chicago, IL (August 8, 2015) – Day Two of the Chicago Yacht Club Verve Cup Offshore started hot and slow with an hour-long postponement. Racers relaxed on the lake until the wind started to fill in at 11:15 A.M. with a steady but shifty breeze of 8-12 knots. The wind held out for the rest of the day as clouds rolled in, and each section was able to complete three races.

“The race committee has done a great job getting a lot of races in and cutting down the time between the races,” said Shawn O’Neill, owner of Eagle a Sydney 38 racing in ORR 2. “Because of that, we have seven races in the till after just the first two days.”

The Tartan 10 is the largest class represented at the Verve with 22 entries. At the end of Day One, Erica was leading the Fleet, but they dropped out after the first race today due to a broken forestay. This equipment failure cost them 69 points, and they dropped to 11th place. With Erica gone, Winnebago and Meat are tied with 30 points each.

Brian Kennalley, owner of Meat, said that their sights aren’t only set on Winnebago in the highly competitive fleet. “I reckon if you spend too much time and effort focusing on one boat, you could end up with 10 boats ahead of you. If you look at the standings, anyone in the top six or seven could move up if one person makes a mistake and has a bad race.”

In ORR 2, Eagle is maintaining a significant ten point lead ahead of Surface Tension, a Nelson Marek 36. O’Neill says that this doesn’t mean there is any lack of competition, though. “Today was much harder for our boat than yesterday, and in one race we only beat Surface Tension by 5 seconds.” Overall, however, the weather was one of the main challenges of the day. “The conditions really changed a lot today. There were a lot of times when we had to make some quick sail changes. It’s a lot of fun, but you really have to watch your p’s and q’s.”

The Farr 40 Fleet has been ramping up their boat speed and perfecting tactics all season. Half the fleet has had at least one bullet during the event so far. “The maneuvers around the marks are top-notch in the front of the fleet; you really have to be fast around those corners,” said Great Lakes Farr 40 Fleet Captain Leif Sigmond. Sigmond and Marcus Thymian, co-owners of Norboy, are sitting in second place behind Inferno at the end of Day Two. With solid tactics and an early season win in the Chicago NOOD Regatta, Sigmond adds that, “[Phillip Dowd’s] Inferno is really the boat to beat this year.”

A Saturday distance race has been run in tandem with the buoy courses since 2010. Matt Gallagher, owner of Endeavour, a Beneteau 37, is especially appreciative of this race option. “I think it’s great that Chicago Yacht Club offers this race because a lot of boats like ours are not suitable for buoy racing. Frankly we would have gotten slaughtered if we were doing the buoy racing, but instead we got to spend a great day on the water.”

Racing concludes Sunday, August 9. Additional details here.

Source: Morgan Kinney, Chicago Yacht Club

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