sshow bob

2018 Downeast Challenge

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A bunch of us are trying to reinvigorate the tradition of intermediate distance, ocean races in northern new england.  To that end, we've revived the Downeast Challenge, racing from Marblehead to Boothbay Harbor.  We'll have a full moon, and are hoping for a fun, low key event. Please consider joining us.  Accommodations are available in Marblehead for boats coming in from out of town.

Marblehead Yacht Club is hosting its Downeast Challenge ocean race to Boothbay Harbor Maine on July 27-28.  Sail by the light of a full moon and enjoy complementary Rumson's Rum and Rising Tide Beer, plus a free T-shirt for each skipper.  For more information or to register today, visit http://www.regattaman.com.

 

 

 

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I cant do it this season, but this is exactly the kind of race I have been looking for.   My boat prefers distance races than around the cans.  This looks like a blast.

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We are hoping there are more like you and like us who would be into this sort of thing.  We knew that this year turnout might be light, but we're getting great interest.  We are not wedded to this part of the season for future years.  Is there a part of the season that would suit you better?

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The dates seem good.  End of July, beginning of Aug seems like a good point to have the event.  My only concern would be conflicts with other events like the June Moon Chase Race closer to Boston which is a 40nm race and would probably attract the same group of sailors.

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32 minutes ago, MauiPunter said:

The dates seem good.  End of July, beginning of Aug seems like a good point to have the event.  My only concern would be conflicts with other events like the June Moon Chase Race closer to Boston which is a 40nm race and would probably attract the same group of sailors.

I disagree. I don't think there's much overlap here. The Downeast challenge is a destination race, one you can use as a starting point for a week or two in Maine. Boats like mine aren't going to do the Downeast challenge because we're not equipped for cruising. There are a few boats that are going to compete in the JMCR because it's a pursuit qualifier for MBSA. I think both are great for the sport, and I hope they're both very successful!

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41 minutes ago, ryley said:

I disagree. I don't think there's much overlap here. The Downeast challenge is a destination race, one you can use as a starting point for a week or two in Maine. Boats like mine aren't going to do the Downeast challenge because we're not equipped for cruising. There are a few boats that are going to compete in the JMCR because it's a pursuit qualifier for MBSA. I think both are great for the sport, and I hope they're both very successful!

You are probably right, but, for me, it would be a conflict cause I like long distance races.  

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yeah? where were you for the Lambert then, hmm? ;)

Nothing like spending 2 hours getting from FR to halfway rock on a 95 mile race. Still, it beat being ashore ;)

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10 minutes ago, ryley said:

yeah? where were you for the Lambert then, hmm? ;)

Nothing like spending 2 hours getting from FR to halfway rock on a 95 mile race. Still, it beat being ashore ;)

I had a conflict (wedding).   I'm also going to miss the Berringer Bowl ( going to be sailing back from Halifax that day), but I am planing on sailing the June Moon Chase Race, and the Harbor Islands, and the Boston Light.

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5 hours ago, ryley said:

I disagree. I don't think there's much overlap here. The Downeast challenge is a destination race, one you can use as a starting point for a week or two in Maine. Boats like mine aren't going to do the Downeast challenge because we're not equipped for cruising. There are a few boats that are going to compete in the JMCR because it's a pursuit qualifier for MBSA. I think both are great for the sport, and I hope they're both very successful!

Good afternoon, guys.  Its interesting and helpful to get your feedback on this, both in terms of interest and perception.  This race was actually conceived for me as the first step in establishing a shorthanded racing circuit in northern New England.  My goal for it was to serve as part of a training regime ultimately leading to a Bermuda 1-2 effort.  Although cruising boats are certainly welcome, we didn't intend that the race serve primarily cruising sailors.  Ryley, I would appreciate feedback about what leads you to conclude you wouldn't race in this race because you're not equipped for cruising?

Eventually, I hope that this race would be scheduled so that the Monhegan Race follows it closely, allowing people the option of racing to Maine, then doing that race.

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5 minutes ago, sshow bob said:

Good afternoon, guys.  Its interesting and helpful to get your feedback on this, both in terms of interest and perception.  This race was actually conceived for me as the first step in establishing a shorthanded racing circuit in northern New England.  My goal for it was to serve as part of a training regime ultimately leading to a Bermuda 1-2 effort.  Although cruising boats are certainly welcome, we didn't intend that the race serve primarily cruising sailors.  Ryley, I would appreciate feedback about what leads you to conclude you wouldn't race in this race because you're not equipped for cruising?

Eventually, I hope that this race would be scheduled so that the Monhegan Race follows it closely, allowing people the option of racing to Maine, then doing that race.

What I mean is that I think the race itself is very cool, and one that I would do in my Freedom 45. Racing RockIt 2.0 up to Maine would be fun, and then it would be a grind to get it home - yes, I can carry water, and there's a shower in the cockpit, and I have 2 jetboils. But to enjoy Maine with that boat means hotels and restaurants, where the Freedom is self contained, can live on a mooring as easily as a dock, and has a proper water heater and galley (and heat if I need it). If I go to Booth Bay, then I want to see Eggemoggin Reach or Blue Hills or continue on to Southwest Harbor and ogle some Hinckleys. going to Boothbay to turn around and do 100+ miles back to Boston wouldn't be nearly as much fun. To be honest it's bad enough having to go back 45 miles after the Beringer. It's a huge time commitment where less than half of that time is spent racing. The delivery back after Beringer always feels like a grind.

All that being said, I did plan to do the old "Lobster Run" from Stonington to Boothbay in RockIt, unfortunately Corinthian stopped running it. I wholeheartedly support building a long distance, short-handed circuit for Mass Bay/GMORA - I know several skippers that would embrace that, and I'm happy to help in any way I can.

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Got it - thanks for that!  I just got off the phone with the former chair of the Lobster Run, and we're looking into reviving it, or developing this race into it, or something similar. Too late for this year, of course, but would you be more likely to race this race if it fed Monhegan the next weekend, or perhaps fed the Rocks Race in Penobscot Bay?

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Great Idea Sshow Bob! Can't do it this year due to scheduling conflicts but hope to see you in Boothbay July 28!

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5 hours ago, ryley said:

What I mean is that I think the race itself is very cool, and one that I would do in my Freedom 45. Racing RockIt 2.0 up to Maine would be fun, and then it would be a grind to get it home - yes, I can carry water, and there's a shower in the cockpit, and I have 2 jetboils. But to enjoy Maine with that boat means hotels and restaurants, where the Freedom is self contained, can live on a mooring as easily as a dock, and has a proper water heater and galley (and heat if I need it). If I go to Booth Bay, then I want to see Eggemoggin Reach or Blue Hills or continue on to Southwest Harbor and ogle some Hinckleys. going to Boothbay to turn around and do 100+ miles back to Boston wouldn't be nearly as much fun. To be honest it's bad enough having to go back 45 miles after the Beringer. It's a huge time commitment where less than half of that time is spent racing. The delivery back after Beringer always feels like a grind.

All that being said, I did plan to do the old "Lobster Run" from Stonington to Boothbay in RockIt, unfortunately Corinthian stopped running it. I wholeheartedly support building a long distance, short-handed circuit for Mass Bay/GMORA - I know several skippers that would embrace that, and I'm happy to help in any way I can.

Ille criew forre you if you wantte......             :)

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I have confirmed that any boat travelling to Marblehead to race will be provided a mooring and launch service at that end, free of charge.  In Boothbay Harbor, I can help arrange moorings for people who might want to leave boats for a little while.

We have people willing to serve as delivery crew (and possible a delivery skipper or two) from Maine to Marblehead either before or after the race, if that helps anyone join us.  We can put seasoned crew on a few boats, too, if anyone needs that.  

In short, we really want people to join us, and have a great time.  Please let me know how we can help you do that!

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10 entries as of tonight. Not a bad start! 

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38 minutes ago, ryley said:

10 entries as of tonight. Not a bad start! 

Just saw that! We are really excited to try and make this race something people can enjoy. Thanks for supporting it.

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Sounds like a fun one.  If I was a BO and had time on my hands to get there I’d be all over it.   Beautiful area.   

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On 7/3/2018 at 2:54 PM, sshow bob said:

Got it - thanks for that!  I just got off the phone with the former chair of the Lobster Run, and we're looking into reviving it, or developing this race into it, or something similar. Too late for this year, of course, but would you be more likely to race this race if it fed Monhegan the next weekend, or perhaps fed the Rocks Race in Penobscot Bay?

if you revive the lobster run I guarantee I will sign up for it. I don't care what it feeds - I just want to do the run :)

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1 hour ago, ryley said:

if you revive the lobster run I guarantee I will sign up for it. I don't care what it feeds - I just want to do the run :)

Can I have until next year to get it done? :D  Since its a similar length to Marblehead Halifax, do you think we should alternate against that race?  Would you be interested if it were a similar length but started in MH and ended in Maine?

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sure why not. part of the appeal of the lobster run was the course - starting in my hometown (mostly), doing a side of the cape I never see, and ending in a town I love. It's a race that my boat can do, as opposed to n-b or b1-2, which although I could qualify for, is a real crapshoot and a little too far on the danger side for me to do in my boat. Despite the fact that I have about a 100 mile delivery at either end of the race, I think I prefer the original lobster run course, but I could be persuaded to race something different.

I think alternating something like that with the M-H would be a good idea, but if you're serious let's talk in September and come up with a plan.

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On 7/7/2018 at 11:25 AM, ryley said:

if you revive the lobster run I guarantee I will sign up for it. I don't care what it feeds - I just want to do the run :)

The Lobster Run was a great race - did the inaugural race and it was a nice one - except for the breeze shutting down right after a J160 finished and we went from a clear handicap lead to a 2nd place finish as we basically drifted for a full night until a light breeze filled in at sunrise so we could finish - in 2nd on corrected.

Here is a pic from a "nice" cell that greeted us at Block Island a few hours into the race

http://i149.photobucket.com/albums/s43/chjensen/Mixed stuff/SANY0503.jpg

 

 

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1 hour ago, sshow bob said:

SANY0503.jpgGreat photo. I hope you dont mind if I imbed it.  Would you join us if we reinstated it?

No worries.

 

I would definitely like to do that race again - not on my boat though - right now I only have a VX One, which is obviously not suitable.  Are you a member of Corinthians?

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1 minute ago, Keith said:

That's a f'ing nasty looking little system...

It punched out at 45-50 knots for about 20 minutes - followed by a very active electric cell that lasted for a couple of hours with pissing rain and lots of lightning.  The cell in the picture was about 5 miles in diameter

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Reminds me of the squalls I was dodging coming north too Hawaii from W.Samoa through the ITZ.

I would use my radar to monitor them, and try to track them, but they would shift and morph into different shapes as they went through, fun times...

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1 hour ago, Christian said:

I would definitely like to do that race again - not on my boat though - right now I only have a VX One, which is obviously not suitable.  Are you a member of Corinthians?

I am not, and so I should clarify because I am not trying to grab their intellectual property.  What I'm really asking is about interest in a race of similar length, starting and ending at similar points, and concurrently asking about a race of similar length, perhaps starting in Mass Bay.  What I'm interested in personally is a race of a couple of nights.  That said, I am local to Boothbay Harbor Yacht Club, formerly the destination club, and they've expressed interest in providing support the race. 

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4 hours ago, sshow bob said:

I am not, and so I should clarify because I am not trying to grab their intellectual property.  What I'm really asking is about interest in a race of similar length, starting and ending at similar points, and concurrently asking about a race of similar length, perhaps starting in Mass Bay.  What I'm interested in personally is a race of a couple of nights.  That said, I am local to Boothbay Harbor Yacht Club, formerly the destination club, and they've expressed interest in providing support the race. 

I am not suggesting/accusing you of trying to hijack the Corinthians defunct race.  If you are trying to get it going again, you might very well get some support from the Corinthians if you get in touch - I am sure they would be happy to help

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Thanks, Christian. I didnt feel that you were suggesting anything, just that i should be fair by being clear. 

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13 hours ago, jackolantern said:

Newport to Marblehead would actually be a good race

I'd like that - much less delivery at both ends for me!

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12 minutes ago, ryley said:

I'd like that - much less delivery at both ends for me!

Fair - except that the receiving club and the organizing effort are in Maine! :ph34r:  

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Fine, I'll go to Boothbay. sheesh! ;)

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I think there will be one boat from Portsmouth, NH heading up for this.

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We've decided to punt on our trip Halifax and will do the Berringer and the Downeast Challenge instead.  So, count us in.

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I really wanted to do this race, but its the same weekend as the Newport Folk Festival, which is nearly as holy of a summer weekend as the 4th of july.  Otherwise we'd be racing.  Since we typically plan to cruise up to Maine in mid/late august I'll  tweak the schedule a bit to get a fun delivery to vacationland next year.

I want to echo the support for more overnight races in our area as well.

 

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44 minutes ago, MauiPunter said:

We've decided to punt on our trip Halifax and will do the Berringer and the Downeast Challenge instead.  So, count us in.

Really happy  you, even though Im sorry to hear halifax is off.

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9 minutes ago, sshow bob said:

Really happy  you, even though Im sorry to hear halifax is off.

We will do it another time.  No biggie.   Wind isn't looking that great anyways, with a light headwind for more than half of the trip if the GRIBs are correct.  Really dont feel like motoring most of the way.

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So, I am looking at the starting area chart and it looks pretty tricky with lots of stuff to hit.   What is the usual route out of that area to head north?  Are there restriction for the race on exiting the start area?  I'm not super familiar with the Marblehead waters. 

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3 minutes ago, MauiPunter said:

So, I am looking at the starting area chart and it looks pretty tricky with lots of stuff to hit.   What is the usual route out of that area to head north?  Are there restriction for the race on exiting the start area?  I'm not super familiar with the Marblehead waters. 

I'm actually surprised they are starting there as opposed to FR. There is a Mass Bay GSI exclusion zone around Bakers Island and the reefs around there (let me know if you need the GSI's with the exclusion zones). It makes me think they want you to go out through Eagle Island Channel, but if it were me I'd go out almost due east out of Children's Island Channel, outside of N2 at Newcomb ledge, and then figure out what the breeze does to get you around Cape Ann. As you're approaching the cape, you can't cut Thacher Island, but there is a channel between it and londoner ledge, but the wind tends to be better further off shore. Otherwise, it doesn't look like there's much in the way of marked exclusion zones. It looks tight in marblehead but it's actually much easier to sail than it looks on the charts.

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1 hour ago, ryley said:

I'm actually surprised they are starting there as opposed to FR. There is a Mass Bay GSI exclusion zone around Bakers Island and the reefs around there (let me know if you need the GSI's with the exclusion zones). It makes me think they want you to go out through Eagle Island Channel, but if it were me I'd go out almost due east out of Children's Island Channel, outside of N2 at Newcomb ledge, and then figure out what the breeze does to get you around Cape Ann. As you're approaching the cape, you can't cut Thacher Island, but there is a channel between it and londoner ledge, but the wind tends to be better further off shore. Otherwise, it doesn't look like there's much in the way of marked exclusion zones. It looks tight in marblehead but it's actually much easier to sail than it looks on the charts.

I was thinking Eagles Island Channel depending on wind direction.  Definitely tricky if the wind angle isn't just right.  Due east is safer bet, but shaving off some distance is the name of the game.  I definitely would like to see a map of the exclusion zones.  I assume we have to adhere to them.

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image.thumb.png.629ef9477587d8da297d74313d109778.png

Here's the exclusion zone. note that c3 west of bakers and c5 are not part of the exclusion. It's only about a half mile farther to go out the south to get to bakers island, so keep that in mind when you're formulating your strategy. If you need a full copy of the GSI's drop me a PM with your email and I'll get them over to you.

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From one of the Marblehead side guys: I just read the SA thread. The SI's will be out soon. We'll have two starting areas, the first out of the way of NOOD's, and one further out in case of light air.  We just need to hear back from the boat doing RC how far he's willing to go.

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