Severn Sailing Association’s Sunshine Open had 43 sailors for 4 races over two days of overcast weather and light to moderate winds. Eric Reitinger (Brant Beach YC) won the 34 boat Men’s Standard rig fleet while Kim Couranz (Severn Sailing Association) won the 9-boat Women’s Laser Radial Fleet.
Saturday started out slow with a long sail out to the course in little wind. Eventually the wind filled in to just over 5 knots and we got the first race off. It was an Olympic course with a really wide wing mark. After the first 3 legs the RC smartly shorted course to ensure the race was finished within the time limit. Gary Hurban picked the shifts right and picked up the first bullet.
After a brief postponement following the first race, the wind filled in to around 10 and a second race was sailed. In this race Luke Shingledecker (SSA) got the gun. The forecast had called for rain to move into the area in the afternoon, but other than a few sprinkles, nothing materialized.
After racing on Saturday, the sailors were treated to a Yngling keg and a great Steak, Chicken or Salmon dinner.
On Sunday the sailors arrived at the club to find no wind in sight. The first warning had already been moved up an hour to try and get more races in on Sunday as only 2 races were run on Saturday. The RC towed all of the boats to the race course. Once there, the committee boats anchored with the lasers streaming behind for over 2 hours in the 2-3 knots of current. By 1 PM the wind finally started to fill in to just over 5 knots and a race was started.
Despite the left side of the course looking great at the bottom of the course, it was the right side that had more pressure and a better angle/current combination. John Gebhart (SSA) was the first to discover this and got an early lead at the top mark. James McKenna (SSA) caught John on the downwind and wound up first across the line.
The wind continued to build despite the horizon starting to look a little ominous. The forecast had been for severe thunderstorms to move in late in the afternoon. Nothing materialized. The final race was sailed in 10-15 on a long 5 leg course. Luke Shingledecker (SSA) got another bullet and was followed by David Schoene (SSA).
Eric Reitinger didn’t win a race, but his consistency paid off. Eric was in or among the lead pack of boats in every race, and his 3, 2, 6, 3 was enough to give him 8 points over Luke Shingledecker in 2nd. David Schoene finished 3rd followed by Bob Tan (SSA) and Brady White (SSA).
In the Radial fleet Lauren Schoene (SSA) took 3 bullets, but a 6th in the first race was too much to overcome and Kim Couranz’s bullet and 3 seconds gave her 1st overall. Kayla Ellis finished 3rd followed by Margaret Podlich (SSA) and Dorian Haldeman (SSA).
Both Eric Reitinger and Kim Couranz won the opportunity to represent Area C at the Men’s and Women’s US Sailing Singlehanded Championship held at Pensacola Yacht Club on July 29-August 1st.
Despite the dismal forecast, the folks at SSA including PRO Mike Waters and the rest of the RC did a fantastic job with the conditions they were given. And thanks to Fleet Captain Dorian Haldeman for putting everything together.