October 12, 2008

Carrera races to First Place at Dana Point Harbor Championships

Dana Point, CA

"Carrera" crew Dan Bunce, Reiner Butz, Bruce Cooper, Skipper Ralf Butz, Rick Walker, Jeff Bunce
(Dan Geismann not shown)

Big breeze, big waves and big speed were on order for Saturday's two windward-leeward races at DPYC's Dana Point Harbor Championship. 17 boats raced in 20 knots of wind with slamming swells upwind and ultra fast spinnaker sailing on the short 1 mile downwind legs. There was a lot of exciting sailing with all boats, ranging from the J-130 "Braveheart" and Farr 40 "Ohana" to the Capo 26 "Orski" and Islander 36 "Rasa", starting and scoring as one class!

Carnage took its toll on some of the pre-race favorites. Defending Champion and winner of four of the last five DP Harbor Championships, Biff Bunney's Henderson 30 "PowerPoint" broke their main halyard and Viggo Torbensen's IMX 38 "Martela" broke 3 front halyards. Both did not finish up the day well taking DNF's.

Race 1 saw "Martela" show off their good crew work and tactics to win easily and the big boats taking the first five spots, with only Bruce Lotz's J-29 "Sedona" slipping in at fourth amongst the big boats. Race 2 was windier and wilder! Boat and sail handling was the most important element with the short course W-L racing. Many boats choose not to sail with spinnakers and sailed speedy VMG courses "wing on wing" dead downwind to the bottom gate. On Ralf Butz's Carrera 280 "Carrera" we flew the mid-size asymmetric spinnaker and were sailing hotter angles and were planing 100% of the runs with 12-16knots of boat speed! All the boats were flying downwind! Downwind speed was king for "Carrera" who won race 2 easily. "Braveheart" sailed very consistently for the day and took another second place in Race 2. Again, the big boats scored at the top of the fleet in the challenging wind and waves.
After the first day, Lance McCabe's J-130 " Braveheart" was leading with 4 points, with "Carrera" 2 points back, "Ohana" 3 points back, "Reach Around" 5 points back and "Sedona" trailing by 6 points.

Sunday's Random Leg race was looking to be set off in light offshore breeze according to the weather report. However, a building south westerly wind built early before the start and continued to build through the day. All the racers were back on the race course, except for "Power Point".

The RC picked their famous course #20 that is a predominately reaching race and very little tacking and jibing. This has been a great race for the slower handicapped boats in years before and proved to be dominated by the little boats this year! "Braveheart" easily finished first across the line and had to wait and see the fleet sail to the finish in the building breeze! "Sedona" sailed smooth and out paced the fleet to win Race 3 with "Carrera" close behind in second place. Everyone waited to see where "Braveheart" had corrected! The results came in with "Braveheart" out of the top five which was too many points to stay in the lead.
The overall winner and 2008 Dana Point Harbor Champion is Ralf Butz's "Carrera" with second place going to "Sedona", "Braveheart' third, Dave Zaveski and Don Skrdlant's Santana 30/30 "Schock Wave" fourth and Matt Beattie's Henderson 30 "Reach Around" in Fifth.

"Carrera" sails with Ullman Sails Fiberpath main and #1 genoa, Ullman Sails Airx full size spinnaker and Ullman Sails CZ code zero spinnaker!

For full results, please -click here-