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MASTER MARINERS REGATTA

"The kids have done anything from reefing out the seams to crewing, sanding, and varnishing." hoist. Conditions prevented us from being able to fly it, but we still finished only 10 seconds behind the second-place boat, which did fly its spinnaker. Not too bad for a boat that was in the boatyard two days before." Page 64 •

Latitude 38

• July, 2019

CHRIS REBUCK

Grinning While Bearing It The start line between Golden Gate and St. Francis Yacht Clubs sent off the Bear boat division at 12 noon. Russell Katz and family are caretakers of #35, Renegade. Under his leadership, this 1946 beauty has run the regatta course since 2011. "Bears are the smallest boat in the regatta at 23 feet LOA, but comprise the largest single class to participate. The past several years we have had between five and nine boats in the race," he says. "Things are always close and exciting, with various different boats winning the Gerry O'Grady trophy for the Bear class." Most recently, the prize has rotated among Huck Finn, Magic, Chance, Kodiak and Panda. For 2019, recognition goes to Tim Maloney on Magic. Continues Katz, "Regatta conditions were perfect — just enough wind to move us along nicely, but not so much that you got beat up. We had a good race other than some spinnaker issues during the

MARTHA BLANCHFIELD

T

he 2019 Master Mariners Regatta experienced a reassuring surge in participation, following years of concerning decline. "Racers saw quintessential San Francisco Bay breezes and early summer afternoon sun," says Cory Lancaster, vice commodore and 2019 regatta chair. Notable entrants included Mayan, the storied Alden schooner; Macora, a gaff cutter recently relocated from Los Angeles; two Kettenburgs; and a number of smaller boats. "Also in attendance was nearly every large sailing charter vessel on the Bay, plus the locally designed Birds and Bears. A new non-competitive parade class was also introduced this year." Hosted on Memorial Day weekend, Saturday, May 25, the event commenced with a flag-fluttering boat parade along the western end of the San Francisco Cityfront.

Renegade sailed lean, with only skipper and mate; normally the entire Katz clan is onboard. "Since 2011, the kids have been racing with us. Once the boat was in sailing condition, and Christine and I felt they were old enough to participate, the youngsters hopped onboard." Wooden boats have always been a passion of Katz, who notes that his wife and kids are very supportive. "They have helped get the boat to where she is today. The kids have done anything from reefing out the seams during her original refit, to crewing, sanding, and varnishing." In the four-boat Marconi 3 division, sailing a 15.6-mile course, was the IOD Youngster. Jennifer Thornton, all smiles experiencing her first San Francisco Bay classics boat race at the tiller, says, "Sailing is so much fun when you are that close to the water. You really are in the elements! Luckily water conditions were

not too choppy for our mostly reaching day." Owner of a Schock 35 at Vallejo YC, she enjoyed the day's proximity to other boats. "We came in second — a surprise because we did not see Folly all day." Folly finished first, earning the Homeward Bound perpetual trophy. "Versus our competition, we were able to round more closely to the marks, then come out to the windward side. One thing I've learned from Ron Young, owner of Youngster, is that the smallest amount of sail trim makes a significant difference on a boat like this — down to one fourth or even one eighth of an inch." Classic Acts Brian Boyd competed in the Ocean 2 class (yachts over 30 feet to less than 40 feet on deck with an NC PHRF rating), alongside three sister Farallone Clippers and two other vessels. At the helm of

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Latitude 38 July 2019  

The July 2019 issue of the West's premier sailing and marine magazine.

Latitude 38 July 2019  

The July 2019 issue of the West's premier sailing and marine magazine.