Light winds plague Bayview Mackinac

Published on July 16th, 2018

Detroit, MI (July 16, 2018) – The “slowest race in decades” implies and defines the light winds plaguing the Bell’s Beer Bayview Mackinac Race, which began on Saturday, July 14, albeit with four postponements that pushed back many of the 16 afternoon start times, some by almost two hours.

As of 5:30 this afternoon, only 13 of the bigger boats from the 259-nm Cove Island Course had finished. Thirty four boats had dropped out, and no team from the 204 nm Shore Course was in sight.

“The Cove Island Course finishers are all Class A and B…the closest Class C is still 60 miles out, and D, E, F, G and H are behind that,” said Bell’s Beer Bayview Mackinac Race Chair Gary Shoemaker. “As the classes go up, speed goes down because the boats are smaller.”

Though there is no time limit, organizers traditionally stop recording finishes at noon tomorrow, but for this 2018 edition they will stay at their posts until 6 p.m.

“We have our big awards party at noon, so we hope the winners are in,” said Shoemaker. “We only have the harbor until Wednesday (July 18) at noon because of the Chicago Mac, so we couldn’t postpone until the next day.”

Shoemaker estimates the race is 24 hours behind a normal year. One boat still out there has a chance to win Cove Island Class A. That’s the Ker 43 Abracadabra. And the Santa Cruz 52 Sin Duda!, also still out there, has a shot at winning Class B. As for the other classes, it’s anyone’s guess.

On the tracker, a dozen boats on the Cove Island Course are less than 50 miles out, then a “big clump” of boats is between 50-75 miles out. The Shore Course is losing wind along the Michigan shoreline, so it could be a long night; the leaders are 20 miles out but spread over a 60 or 70-mile trail.

“The interesting thing is that Sailflow is saying that by midnight the gradient wind will be blowing 20 on the nose, so who knows,” said Shoemaker.

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bayview mac course

Overview and close-up of the 259 nm Cove Island and 204 nm Shore Course for the Bell’s Beer Bayview Mackinac Race.

Source: Media Pro Int’l

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