MEXORC COPA CORUM — last thing racers wanted was to arrive in Mexico and then have their very expensive sailboats stuck in Puerto Vallarta, racking up berthing fees while waiting for resolution of bureaucratic issues. Organizers received their fair share of phone calls over the impounding issue, but for the visiting racers the whole impound issue was ultimately irrelevant. "I've worked eight MEXORC's from 2000, and have been the PRO since 2008," says Bruce Green. "The numbers have been pretty much the same since I've been involved. The addition of the J/70 fleet this year helped or we would have been down considerably in the big boat area." Although the impounding issue concerned a lot of people, he says, "The boats from the San Diego to Vallarta race had no problems, although a lot of pre-planning went into the preparation so none were expected."
lmost anyone's concerns would quickly be vanquished once they experienced the sailing conditions on Banderas Bay — which, as it has been said, are fabulous. As the morning sun rises over the bay there usually isn't more than a wisp of wind present. The sun's heat warms the nearby mountains and, just as in San Francisco Bay, a thermal breeze develops. It typically remains light until the early after noon and can jump rather quickly from around 5-8 knots up to a high of 15-20 knots. Prior to the start of a MEXORC race, crews might have teed up the number one or two headsail, only to have to swap it out with the number three just after the warning gun was fired. With the sometimes-sudden wind increase would come larger swell activity and the foredeck would certainly get doused. Thankfully, though, the air temperature is in the mid-to high 80s so you never get cold, you just cool off. The typical afternoon breeze holds Page 90 •
from about 1 p.m. until early evening, when it usually calms down and returns to what it was that morning. Bill Helvestine, owner of the Santa Cruz 50 Deception, was the only Bay Area skipper lured by Banderas Bay's enticing sailing conditions to enter MEXORC this year. But J World's Hula Girl, owned by Wayne Zittel and Barry Demak, was also in town, having participated with Deception in the San Diego-Vallarta race — with paying customers on board. They didn't enter Hula Girl in MEXORC, but will keep her in Mexico for continued chartering opportunities for the next few months. Fortunately for Bill, while four of his crew returned to the Bay Area after the San Diego to Vallarta race, four more flew into town for MEXORC to replace them. Demak raced with Helvestine on the first day and his local friend Rick Taylor filled in with Bill's "Deceptionists" for a total of three days. Demak and Taylor then joined Zittel to finish out the regatta on a chartered J/70 — getting second
place in their one-design division. Meanwhile, various friends and spouses came aboard Deception in order to make the whole event a success. "Our week on Banderas Bay was an
"Then just before the start we saw a whale right on the starting line..." absolute delight," says Bill. "Warm water, warm weather, no foulies — what a treat for us Bay Area sailors! The racing was well organized and competitive. Barry Demak said at one point that Banderas Bay was the best place to sail in the world, and I believe him." The Deceptionists were generally pleased with their performance, save for a few mistakes here and there. Ultimately though, Deception came in sixth. "We didn’t place well, because our rating
The May 2014 issue of the West's premier sailing and marine magazine.