Smooth year for Chicago Mackinac Race
Published on July 16th, 2019
Mackinac Island, MI (July 16, 2019) – The 111th Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac is in the books as the final competitors made their way to the finish line early this morning. Of the 266 boats that began either Friday (Cruising) or Saturday (Racing) in Chicago, a resounding 265 finished and marked one of the highest completion rates in recent years.
The wind conditions favored the lighter side of the spectrum, with teams that played the delicate balance of hugging the Wisconsin shoreline and then venturing into the middle of Lake Michigan finding huge dividends. The move was contrary to tradition which finds veteran teams typically jumping over to the Michigan shoreline early in the Race.
This was Doug DeVos’ 39th CYCRTM, and it’s one of only four or five times he spent significant time in the middle of the lake and sailed on the west side of the Manitou Islands. He and the Windquest TP52 team earned the Royono Trophy as the first monohull to finish CYCRTM.
“This definitely was a race when finding the right spot was very good and finding the wrong spot was very bad, so it was a very tricky race in that regard,” he said.
Jim Weyland, owner of the One Design 35T Chico 2, noted how after looking at the forecast and predictions, all signs pointed toward going up the Wisconsin shoreline. “We knew it was a risk but felt at least 50 percent certain,” he noted, competing in fifth CYCRTM.
The team’s risk-reward strategy paid off as Chico 2 not only won Section 4 but also won the large boat Racing Division for the Chicago Mackinac Trophy.
In the Mackinac Cup Trophy, Rob Evans, the 29-year-old owner and skipper of the J/109 Goat Rodeo, sails with members of Clemson University’s Sailing Team. They have won the J/109 section the past two years, and not only finished first in 2019 but finished on top of the “small boat” Division on corrected time.
Earth Voyager, a Formula 60 trimaran co-skippered by Ryan and Todd Howe from Rochester Yacht Club, NY, won the Martin D. Rieck Trophy as first multihull to finish. They were also the first racing boat overall to cross the line early Sunday morning.
Caliente, a Kris White 44 owned by Michael Steck from Winfield, III., earned the Manitou Passage Trophy.
In the Cruising Division, Peter Thornton’s classic 104’ ketch Whitehawk, came steaming in Sunday afternoon as the first cruising boat to finish for the Ile Aux Galets Cup.
First overall in the Cruising Division, Ryan Johnson and his Perico team in Cruising 2 won the Vanena Cup on corrected time.
New for 2019 is the Point Betsie Trophy for the team challenge. Three boats, one from each Division, join forces and the lowest cumulative team score wins. The 2019 inaugural winning team is “Red, White and Blue,” comprised up of Chicago Yacht Club member boats Eagle (Chicago Mackinac Trophy), Intangible (Cruising), and Providence (Mackinac Cup).
Background: The 111th Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac presented by Wintrust will see the 266 entries start from the Chicago Lighthouse, just off Navy Pier, for the 289.4 nm course to Mackinac Island. The Cruising Division will start on Friday July 12 with the remaining fleets getting underway on Saturday July 13.