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A successful CRAB Cup

Published on August 19th, 2023

The 2023 Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating aka CRAB Cup took place on August 19th on Chesapeake Bay with 84 boats sailing over two courses. Over 650 sailors and supporters of Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating (CRAB) celebrated a successful pursuit race.

Sixteen Harbor 20s sailed a government marks course on the Severn River. Sixty-one Pursuit Racers raced a government marks course on the Chesapeake Bay while the Chesapeake Racer Cruiser Association (CRCA) had seven entries in a Time on Time (ToT) Division Race sailing the same course as the Pursuit Racers but utilizing the Rule 26 5 minute start.

The wind for both circles was from the northwest somewhat steady at seven knots at times gusting to twelve. The 5.0 nm chosen Pursuit Course required a down wind start to the first mark. The racers were well behaved to avoid the 15 minute penalty for crossing the line early. However, it did result in significant congestion at the line with many boats starting well past their designated start times. Still there was only one over early.

Walt Pletcher, last year’s winner sailing Deep State, a Viper 640 finished first with an elapsed time of 1:17:35. John Dodge, who finished third, sailing his J105 Kobayashi Maura, tactically held off Katsu, Jamie Wright’s RP45, at the final rounding mark prior to the finish, preventing Katsu from ultimately overtaking Deep State. Katsu’s elapsed time was just 20 seconds later than Deep State while having started twelve minutes behind.

The six Beneteau First 22As skippered by CRAB guests with disabilities and crewed by CRAB volunteers all finished within 5 minutes of each other with an average elapsed time of 1 hour 47 min. Three boats exchanged the lead during the race. RDML (ret.) Tim McGee on Club Mac was the first CRAB boat to cross the line.

Two divisions comprised the Harbor 20 racers. The full crew division was won by Jon Forst in Killer Rabbit and the Single-handed division was won by Garth Hichens in Sugar.

This year’s Poker Pursuit for power boats, which involves traveling to landmarks on the Bay and submitting a photograph in return for a playing card enjoyed its usual dedicated following. Congratulations to Champion and CRAB guest Lydia Deckman for her win in the Poker Pursuit. Honorable mention goes to “Worst Hand” Jim Whitcomb and “The Colonel’s Hand.”

The Skippers Challenge continues a record of success with over $77,891 raised and still more coming in. Kudos and warmest appreciation to the 36 teams raising funds this year. The live auction, raffle, and CRAB swag store raised over $10,000 at the party. CRAB wishes to thank everyone for their generous support and safe participation in The CRAB Cup and looks forward to seeing everyone again in 2024 on the water and at the best party in town.

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Source: Bill Levatino, EYC RC Chair

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