Hulls in the harbour, Butts in the bar
Published on June 20th, 2018
The majority of the 2018 Newport Bermuda Fleet crossed the St. David’s Lighthouse finish line either just before or after sunrise today. Between 0400 and 0500 local time, the finish-line team stationed at St. David’s Lighthouse logged 38 finishers. Nearly the entire fleet were expected to finish by the end of the day.
The race officials on station at the finish are a Royal Bermuda Yacht Club team led by past commodore Leatrice Oatley, standing rotating four-hour watches from Sunday through Thursday. When we visited their trailer this morning before dawn, the B Watch was on duty, and there were dozens of boats a mile or two offshore; green lights were the boats hard on the wind approaching the finish, red lights were the boats reversing course to head back around the island for Hamilton Harbour.
The results remained provisional, but what quickly became clear is that the smaller boats in most classes did best, and the smaller classes in each division (for an explanation of the divisions, click here).
In the St. David’s Lighthouse Division, the provisional leader on corrected time was an entry in the smallest class, the Columbia 50, Grundoon, owned by James Grundy, three minutes ahead of Thomas Campbell’s Cal 40, Nicole. In the Finisterre Division, the smaller boats leading in Class 11 were correcting ahead of the bigger boats in Class 12 and 13. Peter Torosian’s Tartan 4100 Pinnacle was the provisional leader but with several boats still to finish.
Of the 169 boats that started, two had retired. Ruse, a Swan 44, dropped out early and began motoring and arrived in Bermuda this morning. Balliwick, a Blue Jacket 40, suffered damage to its steering system. At noon EDT, the boat was proceeding at about five knots under jury-rigged steering with 65 miles to go.